Amanda Riley (from left) Mandi Haroldson, Rachel Harrison and Kristen Uffmann, members of Senior Girl Scout Troop 80 in Martinez, pose with one of the large display Christmas cards they made to sell today at Wesley United Methodist Church in Evans.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
A Martinez Girl Scout troop has found a creative way to spread Christmas cheer and raise money for its activities at the same time.
The six girls of Senior Girl Scout Troop 80 have spent evenings and weekends for the past two months painting 6-foot-tall wooden greeting cards to be sold as holiday yard decorations.
They will sell four such cards from 9:30 a.m. to noon today in the parking lot of Wesley United Methodist Church on North Belair Road in Evans.
"We wanted to find another way to make more money because we always have yard sales, but they don't make that much money," said Mandi Haroldson, 15, whose mother, Juana, guided the troop's project.
Each card is made of two 6-foot-by 4-foot plywood panels hinged together to resemble a holiday card. The girls brought in Christmas cards and voted on their favorite images to use as templates for the project, which Haroldson had seen done in her hometown of Valdosta, Ga., 20 years ago. The image was then drawn out and put on an opaque projector, enlarging it to fit the larger-than-life cards. Haroldson is a troop co-leader and retired two years ago from Evans High School after 30 years as an art instructor.
"(My mother) introduced it to us because her hometown did it, but nobody in Augusta has ever really seen them," Mandi said.
The four cards feature one panel painted with religious images, including angels, a folk art Nativity scene and the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus. The second panel of each card is painted with a verse originating from a Christmas card, Christmas song or Bible verse, Haroldson said.
The Girl Scouts paint a gigantic Christmas card that will be sold today outside Wesley United Methodist Church. The troop will take orders for cards for next Christmas.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
"Most yard decorations are secular, but we kind of wanted to show the true meaning of Christmas," Haroldson said.
The cards, which are sealed with an exterior polyurethane, will be sold for $200 and will be customized with the family's name or personal greeting. The cards also will include a list of care and maintenance instructions.
The troop will be taking orders for more cards for next Christmas, which the girls said they'll get started on by next summer. They spent every Wednesday evening and lots of weekends finishing the cards up in time for Christmas this year.
"We'll continue doing it, but not at this rate," Mandi said. "This was the first time and we didn't know how long it was going to take."
Despite the work, the girls said, they enjoyed the project.
"We all enjoy painting," Kristen Uffmann, 15, said. "It's such a good fund-raiser because it is something we enjoy."
Rachel Harrison, 15, admitted she's not exactly a painter, but she still enjoyed the project despite going home covered in polyurethane.
"It's fun," she said. "It's a lot different."
The proceeds are used for troop activities. Haroldson said she's happy to have found a creative way to raise funds.
"It's better than having a yard sale," she said, laughing.
To order a custom card, call Haroldson at 860-2487 or e-mail her at email@example.com.
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