When Girl Scout Troop 4477 held its first meeting at Cathedral School, Kyla Rosman and Indigo Fish were first-graders and Natalie Markon was in second.
Markon is now a freshman at Superior High School. Eighth-graders Fish and Rosman will be starting high school in the fall.
Through the years, they've traveled, learned, camped and served the community together.
"We're the Three Musketeers," Markon said.
Although they're moving forward, the trio have left something behind. They raised more than $1,800 to purchase science equipment for the school as part of a Girl Scout project.
The project earned them a Girl Scout Silver Award, the top achievement girls in grades 6-8 can receive. Their focus was on school safety.
"I feel like we kind of tried a few things out before we settled on science," Markon said. "We wanted to make the school safer. I guess we thought the best use of our time was the science area."
Working with science teacher Alexis Cook, the girls determined what was needed: a fire blanket, chemical cabinet and eyewash/safety shower station so classes can tackle chemistry experiments. Then they focused on funding.
"It took two years to get everything together," said Staci Rosman, who leads the troop with Theresa Leopold.
The girls, along with fellow scouts Gabi Sakuray and Gabbi Saari, applied for grants and wrote letters to businesses asking for donations.
"I think it was actually a community effort, when you have everybody coming together to make something happen," Rosman said.
Now, they're turning their fundraising talents to a more personal goal: a 2021 trip to Australia and New Zealand sponsored by the Girl Scouts office. The price tag is $5,500 per scout.
"Each girl is going to earn her way there," Leopold said, through cookie sales, fall product sales and individual events like bagging groceries.
"We think it would be a fun experience to have together and meet new people and see what it's like on the other side of the world," Fish said.
Markon said she's never been on a plane, swam in the ocean or went scuba diving before, but she's looking forward to the new experiences with her friends.
"They have each other's back all the time," Rosman said.
The troop size has fluctuated over the years, from 16 to three. When it started, Rosman and Leopold put a lot of time into planning activities, from crafting and service projects to field trips. Today, the girls choose which badges to pursue and what they want to work on.
"Girl Scouts is really all about including the girls' voices in all of these plans and decisions," Leopold said.
The leaders, both former scouts, said it's been a wonderful experience to watch the scouts grow into young ladies.
Troop meeting dates now fluctuate because the teens are involved in sports and other activities. But they're committed to following the scouting path together.
"I just like meeting with each other and just having fun," Fish said.
"You also get leadership experience," Kyla Rosman said. "You can get scholarships."
Now that she's older and going to high school, Markon has felt pressure to drop Girl Scouts because it's 'not cool.'"
"But I stayed with it and I'm really glad I did because I'm still friends with these guys," Markon said. "I've done so much to change, even if it's little, I can see the effects are happening and it makes me feel better about myself."