Bridges to the Next 100 Years – Saturday, March 10

Day 2 of the Poppy Patrol’s adventure in Savannah for Girl Scouts’ 100th anniversary weekend:

From our little bridge in the airport, we went on to “bridging” in a big way during a great event: Bridging to the Next Century, an event planned for maximum drama and fun by Girl Scouts of Historic Georgia. We all hiked across the Talmadge Bridge over Savannah!

Bridging is a meaningful theme and tradition in Girl Scouting. It’s an occasion for celebration of growth and sisterhood, and bridges of all kinds are fitting images for the journey of life growing up as Girl Scouts.

And what a great day for 3,000 Girl Scouts to cross a bridge together! The sun shone just right, from 7 to 11 a.m., as troops and patrols made their way by ferry and bus to the Talmadge Bridge. The bridge had been especially prepared with safety personnel and equipment so that we could hike across all morning. A happy mood prevailed as the sun shone, truckers saluted us with their big rig horns, and passing motorists waved greetings. Along the bridge route, host Girl Scouts greeted us with large posters that commemorated each decade in the first 100 years of Girl Scouting. As we crossed the finish line, we received stickers and high fives and cheers from the host team. Buses shuttled us to Forsyth Park for the birthday party of the century!

The park was dotted with information booths, activities and historic displays. We observed animals, dressed up in costumes, posed with a life-size puppet of Juliette Gordon Low, studied the evolution of Girl Scout uniforms, sang along with leaders from the stage, and exchanged SWAPS with new friends. We were all sisters in Girl Scouting!

A main feature of the park was the interactive bridge made for official bridging ceremonies and also just for fun. All day long, Girl Scouts enacted the many meanings of “bridging” by walking, dancing, singing and skipping along the bridge. A garden of daisies grew hour by hour as Girl Scouts recycled soda cans by stripping the aluminum into petals and adding embellishments like pom-poms and paint. Each flower was then stuck onto a dowel and “planted” into the ground next to the bridge.

The Poppy Patrol played joyfully all day and made lots of friends. We were quite an attraction in our T-shirts that made it obvious that we had come all the way from California.

Poppy Patrol Pop Trivia Question #2: Where were the only Girl Scout Senior Roundups held? There were just four of them in between 1956 and 1965. Senior Girl Scouts gathered at Roundups for a camporee where they shared history and customs.

Ready for a day of Girl Scout fun!

All of us boarding the ferry.

The view from the ferry–getting close to the Talmadge Bridge.
Walking across the Talmadge Bridge — there were markers for each decade of Girl Scout history.

A sign for the SWAPS tent. We collected so many amazing SWAPS!

Many Girl Scouts got their hair done in a fun, goofy way at a special booth.

The amazing bridge art piece!

We made it across the Talmadge–now we cross another beautiful bridge!

The bridge was designed by an architecture student at Savannah College of Art & Design. Watch the video above to hear more about the piece from Youth ChalleNGe Academy program director, Bob Hughes.

There were tons of entertainment by people like songstress Melinda
Carroll. Recognize this song?

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