CORALVILLE — The girls of Junior Troop 620 in North Liberty had 20 activities to choose from in their pursuit of the coveted Bronze Award; they could have completed a neighborhood tree planting project, worked on a dog park for North Liberty, cleaned up local Girl Scout camps, or even made cat and dog items for an animal shelter.
Instead, they chose to race.
Girls Drive Too! was the name and the theme behind the first pinewood derby for the Girl Scouts. The Oct. 17 event was held in the Northwest Junior High in Coralville, and featured 37 racers in five age groups: Daisies, Brownies, Juniors, Cadets, and Seniors.
The girls decorated their cars– available as kits– themselves, or with some parental help. The creative designs of the wooden racers ranged from a rolling ice cream cone to a hot dog, and a gray squirrel complete with bushy tail. More traditional race car designs were seen as well. The cars were judged by age group in the following categories: Best in Show, Funniest, Original Design, Most Glamorous, and Spirit of Girl Scouts. Trophies were awarded for each category in addition to the top three finishers on the track.
In addition to providing a few hours of fun to their fellow Girl Scouts, the event also served a larger purpose: raising food and money for the North Liberty Food Pantry.
“It takes a lot of work,” said Ivy Vance, a Senior Girl Scout, of the eight months spent putting the event together. Eight of the 10 members of Junior Troop 620 worked on the project in order to earn the Bronze Award, the highest a Junior can earn. To qualify, a Junior Scout has to perform at least 30 hours of volunteer service.
“It’s a ton of fun,” Vance said.