Girl Scout Troop 1358 member Kyra Hartley reports that the group organized a food shopping trip recently to benefit those in need. They checked out food sale advertisements and organized a list of items they thought would be good to give the needy.
The six girls and nine members of Cub Scout Pack 306 then shopped at Harvest Foods.
"The girl scouts (Brownies) broke into two groups of three. The boy scouts broke into three groups of three and off they went," Kyra e-mailed.
"We got quite a few things on our list and bought things that weren’t on our list too. It was fun."
They bought things from all the different food groups, such as peanut butter, nuts, split peas, spaghetti noodles and sauce, jam, pancake mix, lentils, rice "and so much more that I can’t think of right now."
Each girl scout group had $150 to spend and a calculator to add up their purchases as they rounded the aisles. "We had an awesome time, especially me doing the calculating and getting to spend time with my Brownie friends," Kyra reported.
Kelly Hartley, leader of Troop 1358, said the mostly third-graders and one fourth-graders used $300 in funds they earned from cookie sales last year.
"This is the first year that we’ve done this and we were so excited that the Boy Scouts invited us to do this with them because it is such a good cause," Kelly said.
Last year they donated a portion of their cookie money to a family that needed help buying a head stone for their child.
Walla Walla Community College students conducting their own food drive picked up the Scouts’ food collection to take to a local food bank.
Kim Corcoran (Sully), Cub Scout Bear Den 306 leader, organized the shopping trip at Loney’s.
It is a new community service project that they may do again, she said. The whole Pack didn’t go, just the "Bear" group of third graders and a "Wolf" second grader.
"We had many other participants as well," Kim said, including the Walla Walla Valley Chamber of commerce, Blue Mountain Community Foundation, the Eagles, Dillwood, Burkel and Sully and Loney’s.
The Cub Scouts used $50 in donated funds from the Eagles. Also, Kim’s husband’s business, the accounting firm of Dillwood, Burkel and Sully, won the $300 prize from the Chamber’s table-decorating contest last year, which was donated to the grocery fund.
Kim said she had many goals. "First, I wanted the kids to know that people in need are in need all year ‘round. It is not just at Thanksgiving that you need to put a can or two into a bin.
"Second, I wanted my kids to know that grocery shopping is harder than you think. You have to use math and logic skills to get the best deal for your money."
She also wanted them to understand how an ad works by the reading involved in shopping as well as just numbers. She wanted them to work together toward a goal, "because working together lets everyone contribute and you learn from others."
She wanted to increase their awareness to the price of groceries: that "you can’t get much for $50 although that figure seems like a large one when you are 8 years old."
Kim wanted them to know how to shop within a budget. And finally, "I thought it would be fun; each group of three to four boys had $115 to spend and one group came within 8 cents of this figure."
"Loney’s took good care of us," she added. The store gave the group a 5 percent discount on all purchases, a free root beer float in the staff breakroom and transport of the food to the food bank.
Pat Wahl at Loney’s graciously gave his help to the group, Kim said.
The Cub Scouts will earn a patch for the activity and can check off some of the requirements towards their Bear badge.
"They loved it and we are considering making this an annual event, with a special fundraiser just for this project. If we can expand it to the whole Pack of about 35 kids, that would be even better."
The Pack is sponsored by St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, which has been 100 percent supportive in all ways possible, Kim said. "So, this couldn’t have happened without them, even though they didn’t even know it was going on"
To donate to the groups so they can do the drive next year, contact Dave Rudie at 525-7578 at the local Boy Scouts of America office, and the Girl Scouts Eastern Washington and Northern Idaho office, Spokane, 99201-2806, 509-747-8091 or online, www.gsewni.org .
Particulars have been pinned down for Walla Walla School District’s Everyone CAN Make a Difference-themed holiday food drive.
Food donations will support the Blue Mountain Action Council Food Bank and cash donations will also be accepted, the Walla Walla Public Schools online newsletter Week in Review reported.
The project goal is to help replenish local food bank supplies
The drive will be Monday-Dec. 18. Participants will be at area grocery stores Dec. 5. Collection sites will be at Walla Walla Public Schools and Walla Walla General Hospital Monday-Dec. 18.
Non-perishable items including tuna, macaroni and cheese, peanut butter, canned fruits and vegetables, pasta, granola bars are needed.
This year’s focus will teach students the importance of helping others.
For more information, contact Michelle Carpenter, Green Park teacher, at 527-3077 or firstname.lastname@example.org; or Lori Finn, Lincoln Alternative High School teacher, at 527-3083 or email@example.com.
The group is also planning a Fill the School Bus event to support the drive.
School buses will be parked in front of area stores for shoppers to fill with donated Holiday Food Drive items. That will take place from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Dec. 5 at Albertsons, Harvest Foods, Rose Street, SuperOne and times to be determined at Safeway and Walmart.
City of Walla Walla employees Dana Hood, with the Walla Walla Police Department, and Gary Goodwin, with Fleet Maintenance, delivered 50 coats for distribution to Walla Walla students as part of a donation from Union Work Force 1191W.
"Last year I was driving home during the big snow storm and I noticed a group of five kids walking down Ninth (Avenue) with only sweatshirts and sweaters on and they were freezing," said Gary, who is union president.
"I said to myself (that) we need to step up and do something for the kids. We feel real good as a union work force for the city that we were able to help out in these hard times and successfully complete the project."
The coats were delivered to district elementary schools this week for distribution to students in need. Maryelyn Hebel and Kay Schisler in the Curriculum Department delivered the coats to local schools, the Walla Walla Public Schools online newsletter Week in Review reported.
Former Walla Wallan Brendon Mendoza received a Renaissance Award for General Manager of the Year for the Olive Garden Denver Division Restaurants for his pace-setting performance versus the previous year at the Cheyenne-Las Vegas location he managed before he was promoted.
The award was a BVLGARI watch from Italy.
Brendon is a senior financial analyst with the Olive Garden Denver Division, which has 89 restaurants in 12 states and six in Canada.
Four different divisions were present out of seven total to celebrate their legacy of excellence, Brendon said. They also helped rebuild an elementary school that was damaged by Hurricane Katrina while they were at the gathering.
The son of Jill and Robert Zagelow of Walla Walla and the late John Mendoza, he graduated in 1996 from Walla Walla High School, in 1999 from Walla Walla Community College and in 2002 from Washington State University. Jill said they are going to celebrate the holidays with Brendon for the first time since 2001.
Walla Walla Public Schools online newsletter Week in Review reported that the Eastern Washington Autism Spectrum Disorder Association is selling Big Cheese pizza certificates to raise money for an equipment library for children affected by an autism spectrum disorder.
"Some of the equipment these children can use to communicate and help with sensory integration issues is quite expensive and out of reach for families," said Kathleen Gilmore, special education teacher.
Kathleen coordinates the district’s elementary autism program at Edison Elementary School.
"We hope to provide this equipment for families to use free of charge and if their child outgrows it, it goes back into our library where it can be checked out by another family."
The certificates cost $10 and are good for one large gourmet or specialty pizza, an $8 savings. From that sale, EWASDA makes $3 toward the library of equipment, Kathleen said.
"They make great holiday gifts for the paper deliverer, postal carrier, coworkers, or busy families." To purchase the certificates, please contact Kathleen Gilmore at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Several schools have been abuzz with mathematical strategies during math concepts events for teachers at Blue Ridge, Prospect Point, Edison and Sharpstein Elementary schools.
Anita Chin, a consultant with OrigoMath, visited the district to model lessons for the teachers. And more than 45 parents attended a district math night at Prospect Point to learn about changes in math curriculum and instruction.
Parents learned how the games, visual models and mental math strategies develop algebraic thinking.
Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at email@example.com or afternoons at 526-8313.