By Katelyn Mary Skaggs
For six weeks Pacific resident Virginia Jenkins lived and breathed Girl Scout cookies. As a result, she ended up selling 1,003 boxes of cookies and was the top seller in the area.
Virginia was recently recognized for her achievement in a ceremony sponsored by Edward Jones.
Virginia, 10, is part of Troop 4263 and is not new to being a top seller. Last year she sold 706 boxes. One of her biggest motivators were the prizes she anticipated receiving.
“Mostly, the prizes and trying to beat my goal last year,” she said.
To meet her goal, Virginia walked and sold in four different subdivisions.
“Most girls only depend on their parents, but my dad only sold so many at work so I would go door to door instead,” Virginia said.
Her dad, Derek Jenkins, sold about 200 boxes at his work and as a family, the Jenkins’ themselves only ordered about 20 boxes.
When cookie time begins, the family makes sure everyone knows.
“We even put out a sign in our yard that lets our neighbors know it’s cookie time and they even knock on our door,” said Stephanie Jenkins, Virginia’s mom.
Being her third year selling Virginia has many repeat customers who will order more and more from her every year, according to Stephanie.
“There’s a few older ladies that who sit in their living room with their door open and just have the screen door [closed] just waiting for her to show up,” Derek said.
Going door to door, Virginia was able to see a lot of repeat customers and meet new ones.
“I know a lot of people now,” Virginia said.
Virginia said it got hard to keep selling at times but she kept going.
“I am just really proud of myself,” Virginia said. “You guys [her parents] kept telling me, ‘there was no way I would make it to a thousand,’ and look what I did.”
Along with the ceremony from Edward Jones, Virginia received prizes that include a jewelry box, beach towel, portfolio folder, owl stuffed animal, owl pillow, washi tape, s’more charm, lots of patches, a cup, journal, Cardinals tickets, free resident camp, and she will be one of the first girl scouts to sleep in a new lodge at Fiddlecreek Camp.
Even though it was hard, Virginia advises other girls to keep going if they want to keep selling.
“Be patient and not every door is going to say yes,” Virginia said.
Derek was the cookie manager not only for his daughter’s troop but another one as well. The Jenkins’ ended up with 386 cases of cookies in their living room.
It took three cars to pick up and bring all the cookies to the Jenkins’ house to be sorted. They moved all their living room furniture out to make space.
To get the cookies boxes inside the family created an assembly line and passed all the boxes into the living room through the window.
They ordered bags from a retail company and printed off receipts to make sure everything was correct and stayed organized. Stephanie said it took about a day to sort all the orders and it took about three weeks to deliver them.
The Jenkins’ waited until they sorted all the cookies to dive in and eat their own boxes.
“Being financially responsible for all those cookies and I didn’t want to start eating cookies and miss count boxes and eat more than we thought we did and owe more,” Stephanie said.
For next year, Virginia is looking to best this year’s record and sell 1,111 boxes.
“She has no problems talking to people and I think that is the kind of confidence that has made her good at selling,” Stephanie said.