FARMINGDALE, NJ - It’s the most wonderful time of the year – and we’re not talking about the holidays. Girl Scout cookie season is right around the corner! Beginning Friday, January 18th, Girl Scouts throughout Monmouth and Ocean counties will sell eight varieties of their tasty treats including Samoas, Thin Mints, Tagalongs, Do-Di-dos, Trefoils, Savannah Smiles, Dulce de Leche and Thank U Berry Munch at $4 per box.

“During the Girl Scout cookie sale, my girls learned to speak with new people and to be especially polite to anyone interested in buying cookies,” said Amy Toman, leader of Cadette Troop 1517 in Spring Lake Heights. “They know that smiles sell boxes!“

When you buy a box of Girl Scout cookies, you’re giving a Girl Scout the tools she needs to grow into the strong, successful woman she was born to be. The Girl Scout cookie sale provides an opportunity for girls to enjoy themselves while simultaneously learning five essential life skills including goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics. The Girl Scout cookie sale also teaches girls that they can make positive changes in the world around them – speaking for those less fortunate, fostering change where needed and having an impact close to home, and even on the other side of the world.

The Girl Scout cookie sale also provides girls with multiple opportunities to raise funds which help them achieve the goals they’ve set for themselves. Girls at all levels learn to set goals, whether it is a trip overseas or a week at camp, and achieve those dreams through determination and teamwork. Consequently, parents appreciate the program for both the life lessons taught to their daughters, as well as the goals and dreams girls can achieve that might otherwise be out of reach financially.

“When I was a Girl Scout, the cookie sale helped me develop entrepreneurial skills, business savvy and interpersonal relationships, “ said Lipica Shah of Millstone, Girl Scout Gold Award recipient and 2005 Young Woman of Distinction. “I also had the opportunity to hike Alaska's Matanuska Glacier, explore Ireland's Ring of Kerry and zip line through the rain forest in Costa Rica, most of which was funded by my Girl Scout cookie sale earnings!”

Equally as important, the Girl Scout cookie sale also supports other community organizations and our military. The Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore will continue its “Gift of Caring” program in partnership with the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean County developed as a service project where each troop/group can donate cookies to worthwhile causes. Girl Scouts in our community will also send Girl Scout cookies to soldiers overseas. Over the past two years, the Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore has donated more than 6,000 product sale items to help feed those in need both at home and abroad.

For more information on the Girl Scout cookie sale, visit www.girlscoutsjs.org/cookies