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Girl Scouts to bridge the generation gap

| Friday, Aug. 17, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
Louis B. Ruediger
A mid-1960s’ Girl Scout sash owned by Patty Forringer, of Kittanning, rests against a sit-upon made by Forringer when she was a girl scout. The photo was taken while she attended Camp Chalet. From left: Robbie Dunmire, Lodi Swink, Patty (McCafferty) Forringer, Patty Bleech and Jean Brocious. Louis B. Ruediger | Leader Times

In honor of the Girl Scouts' 100th anniversary, a local celebration is in the works for Saturday.

As part of the celebration, the youngest Girl Scouts in the county will lead current and former Scouts across the Citizens Bridge in Kittanning in a timed event to match similar bridge crossings across the nation.

More than 217 girls and 45 adults from Sugarcreek, Cowansville, Ford City, Worthington, Kittanning, Elderton and East Brady will participate, said Tonilynne Stirling, service unit manager for the area.

Stirling said some of the highest Girl Scout awards will be given out during Saturday's event.

She noted that any past Girl Scout can join in the march across the bridge.

Patricia Forringer of Kittanning is a former Girl Scout who has fond memories of attending Camp Chalet in the mid 1960s.

She remembers taking a bus from the corner of North McKean and Chestnut streets to attend the day camp where she earned her camping badge.

She recently came across her sash while cleaning out her mother's attic.

Along with the sash, she also found the sit-upon she made back then – which was a folded up newspaper covered with vinyl used for a seat while at camp.

A black and white photo from that time shows her surrounded by friends and fellow Scouts.

In the picture, she holds a watermelon which the group had kept cool by submerging in a stream.

“They were good summers,” said Forringer. “We made good friends.”

Although the march is set to begin at 1 p.m., there will be plenty to do from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Kittanning Riverside Park.

Visitors can check out Girl Scout memorabilia while listening to live music and peruse the craft and food booths which will be set up throughout the park.

Juliette Gordon Low founded the first Girl Scout Troop on March 12, 1912, in Savannah, Ga. Today, there are 3.2 million Girl Scouts in the United States.

They are part of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts – totaling 10 million girls and adults – in 145 countries worldwide.

For more information on Saturday's event, call 724-548-1553.

Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-543-1303 or

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