Great Girl Scout Appalachian Trail Hike Kick-off Ceremony

Date Published: Feb 14, 2012

Harpers Ferry, WV (February 14, 2012) – The Girl Scouts of the USA will be holding their Kick-Off Ceremony at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC)’s headquarters and visitor center in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia on March 11, 2012, to launch their seven-month effort to hike the Appalachian Trail (A.T.). As part of their 100-year celebration of Girl Scouting in the United States, Girl Scouts from all over the country plan to hike the A.T. in sections, starting on March 12, 2012 (the anniversary of the first Girl Scout meeting) to October 31, 2012 (Girl Scout USA founder, Juliette Gordon Low's, birthday).  The goal is to have every section of the A.T., from Maine to Georgia, hiked by Girl Scouts “in bits and pieces.”

“2012 is the Girl Scouts of the USA’s centennial birthday! And what better way to celebrate our 100th anniversary than with a hike of great proportions. We’re marking the occasion by hiking the Appalachian Trail” stated Jennifer Pfister, Marketing & Communications Director of Girl Scouts of Virginia Skyline.

The Kick-Off Ceremony will begin at 11:30a.m. outside the ATC’s headquarters and visitor center. In case of inclement weather, the ceremonywill be held at Curtis Freewill Baptist Church, half a block away on StorerCollege Place.

Three Girl Scout Troops from across Virginia will be hiking into Harpers Ferry to be a part of the ceremony.  The ceremony will include speakers from the Girl Scouts, the ATC, and the National Park Service. The event is open to the public.

Angie Sheldon, Education and Outreach Coordinator of the ATC, stated, “The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is so excited with the amount of interest the Girl Scouts have in getting out and enjoying the Appalachian Trail.  It’s important, now more than ever, to encourage the youth to connect with their natural environment. What better place for them to have an adventure celebrating their anniversary, than along the Appalachian Trail!"

The Great Girl Scout Hike’s Honorary Chair, Mary “Mama Boots” Sands, inspired this celebratory hike. As a Girl Scout Leader in Kentucky (Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana), she began hiking and backpacking the A.T. in the early 1970s. Over the course of nearly 20 years, accompanied by groups of current and past Girl Scouts, she eventually section hiked the estimated 2,180 miles of the A.T.

Event: Great Girl Scout Appalachian Trail Hike Kick-Off Ceremony 
Date: Sunday, March 11, 2012
Time: 11:30a.m.
Location: Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s Headquarters and Visitor Center
799 Washington St., Harpers Ferry, West Virginia 25425

To learn more about this event or to get involved, visit

About the Appalachian Trail Conservancy
The Appalachian Trail Conservancy mission is to preserve and manage the Appalachian Trail – ensuring that its vast natural beauty and priceless cultural heritage can be shared and enjoyed today, tomorrow, and for centuries to come. For more information please visit

Contact: Javier Folgar
Appalachian Trail Conservancy
Tel: (304) 535-2200 ext. 117
Fax: 304.535.2667
Email: [email protected]

About the Girl Scouts
Founded in 1912, Girl Scouts of the USA is the preeminent leadership development organization for girls with 3.2 million girl and adult members worldwide. Girl Scouts is the leading authority on girls' healthy development, and builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. The organization serves girls from every corner of the United States and its territories. Girl Scouts of the USA also serves American girls and their classmates attendingAmerican or international schools overseas in 90 countries. For more information on how to join, volunteer, reconnect, or donate to Girl Scouts,call (800) GSUSA 4 U or visit

Contact: Jennifer Pfister
Girl Scouts of Virginia Skyline
Tel: 540.777-5113
Email: [email protected]

1 comment

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  1. Auth | Mar 13, 2012
    The trail is a magical place! And the lucky ones are those that are ctimmtoed to it and have chosen to make it a part of their lives. The good news is that there are many other magical places to discover, usually off the beaten trail, in the smaller more isolated towns. Life just moves at a different pace, and the people who settle in those places have often chosen to do so. And what makes these places special is the friendliness and generosity of the people who live there. And that caring spirit knows no racial or ethnic boundries. May you discover and enjoy other utopias as the years progress.Also, the more you share your trail experiences once you leave the trail, the more hope there is that other people will either become AT hikers or share with you their utopia experiences. We all have them.

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