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It’s the cookiest time of year

Margie Huerta reaches to take a box of gluten-free Girl Scout cookies from Katie Fellabaum, who is part of Troop 10164. Sales were booming on sunny Saturday. (Jim Thompson/Albuquerque Journal)

Copyright © 2021 Albuquerque Journal

As the top cookie seller in Girl Scout Troop 10642 in Rio Rancho, 9-year-old Katie Castillo normally racks up some of her sales by going door-to-door.

This year will be a little different.

Gone for now are door-to-door sales. But that doesn’t mean there will be any shortages of Thin Mints and Samoas.

Girl Scout Katie Fellabaum hands Kelly Campbell the cookies she purchased at Troop 10164’s cookie booth outside of the Albertsons Market at Academy and Tramway NE on Saturday. In just the first two hours, the troop sold 277 boxes. (Jim Thompson/Albuquerque Journal)

This year, Girl Scouts are operating drive-through socially distanced cookie booths, partnering with delivery services and making use of social media to make sure everyone’s cookie needs are met. Boxes of cookies are $5 each.

“It’s the Girl Scouts that are really saying, ‘We should try these things that other businesses are doing,’ because they see how businesses have had to shift into an online model, and like contactless delivery and curbside delivery, there’s contactless pickup,” said Rebecca Latham, CEO of Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails. “And so the girls are the ones saying, ‘Well, we can try.’ ”

This weekend kicked off Girl Scout of New Mexico Trails troop cookie sales, although Girl Scouts began selling individually to friends and family members Feb. 8.

To celebrate the occasion, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham officially proclaimed this weekend Girl Scout Cookie Weekend, which means Girl Scout booths and drive-throughs will be popping up around town.

Katie said her favorite part of the cookie sales is the cookie booths.

“It’s really fun seeing new people order some new cookies,” she said. “… We usually had to bring a lot of Thin Mints because that’s our most popular.”

This year, Katie, who is a Junior in the Rio Rancho troop, is having to market her cookies through different approaches, such as using yard signs with QR codes.

Katie’s troop leader, Anna Cummings, said she has been “pleasantly surprised” with this year’s sales.

“There’s definitely been a greater push to have the girls … reaching out about cookies online on social media,” she said. “The girls are doing a lot of videos, posting videos talking about Girl Scouts and cookies.”

Cummings said the digital selling techniques haven’t dampened any enthusiasm.

“We have a few new girls this year, and they’re just over the moon to be selling cookies,” she said. “It’s a really fun time and our regular little cookie pros are still just as excited as ever.”

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