Girl Scouts banned from selling cookies near Dispo

A Michigan dispensary selling marijuana seemed like an ideal place to sell Girl Scout cookies after some local troops set up shop outside the facility and sold 1000 boxes last weekend.

At least that was the case until the Girl Scouts of the United States of America  got wind and frowned upon the idea — setting off a storm on social media and leaving scout leaders scrambling to smooth over the hubbub, calling it a “misunderstanding.”

After arranging to go back this Friday and Saturday, local Girl Scout members and families were told not to sell cookies in a "facility where they're not allowed to shop," said Jerry Millen, the owner of Greenhouse of Walled Lake. "I understand that, that's fine ... but they were set up on a public corner.

The troops setting up shop this weekend contacted Girl Scouts of USA to ask for permission, which they are not required to do. They were told by an employee who does not work for the product-sales department that it is not favored to sell the cookies at the dispensary — causing a lot of confusion, said Yavonkia Jenkins, chief marketing officer of Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan.

Jennifer Slayden, the mother of two junior Girl Scouts,  had planned on setting up shop in front of the dispensary this weekend with her daughters, a few other Girl Scouts and their mothers. But plans were suspended, she said, when the   troops from last weekend were "scolded after the fact."

Slayden said she was also told that it's not allowed because children aren't allowed to enter the store, when, in fact, they are.

Children with some form of "ailment" who have been prescribed a medical marijuana card can come with their parents to buy CBD products, Millen said.

The last group of troops  that sold cookies outside the Walled Lake dispensary did not ask for permission, so the Girl Scouts of USA. and Southeastern Michigan were not aware of the sale, which is allowed, Jenkins said. Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan troops can set up booth sales  on their own without approval.

After Millen and his team put the girls' success on social media, they started to gain some attention. Other Girl Scouts started to reach out to the dispensary, asking if they could sell cookies outside the facility.

"I said 'absolutely,' so I was gonna start signing them all up," Millen said.

Greenhouse of Walled Lake owner Jerry Millen, left, buys 301 boxes of Girl Scout cookies from Jennifer Slayden, 39, of Oakland County on Friday, Mar. 5, 2021, after Slayden, a mother of two Girl Scouts, was disappointed about her daughter's lack of opportunity to sell more Girl Scout Cookies after the Girl Scouts of the USA are forbidding the Oakland County Girls Scouts to sell their cookies in front of the Marijuana dispensary Greenhouse of Walled Lake after they had gangbuster sales last weekend.

The Girl Scouts called about seven other shops to ask if they can sell their cookies there this weekend,  but they were turned down each time.

Legally in Michigan, dispensaries are not allowed to sell food or drinks inside the facility, so Millen took it upon himself to buy 301 boxes of Girl Scout Cookies from the girls who were going to sell outside his shop today, to pass out for free tomorrow "just to prove a point." 

Greenhouse of Walled Lake owner Jerry Millen buys 301 boxes of Girl Scout cookies from Jennifer Slayden, 39, of Oakland County on Mar. 5, 2021, after Slayden, a mother of two Girl Scouts, was disappointed about her daughter's lack of opportunity to sell more Girl Scout Cookies after the Girl Scouts of the USA are forbidding the Oakland County Girls Scouts to sell their cookies in front of the Marijuana dispensary Greenhouse of Walled Lake after they had gangbuster sales last weekend.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Girl Scouts have had a hard time raising money.

"I used to be a Cub Scout and I sold popcorn and candy and I used to hustle and knock on doors," Millen said. "With the pandemic now you can't send kids door to door and things like that so it was a great setup for them last weekend and I'm sad for these young girls."

"The very first line of the Girl Scout law is 'I will do my best to be honest and fair,' and for myself and my children, we don't think that this is fair — that you can't sell here but you can at a liquor store," she said.

Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan is contacting the troop leader to resolve this matter, Jenkins said. 

"I would love for somebody from the Girl Scouts of America to reach out to me so I can coordinate the opportunity for these young ladies and several troops to come to my store, every weekend, until cookie sales are over, to sell their cookies," Millen said. "We put 1,500 people a day through this store. That's 1,500 potential boxes."

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The troops setting up shop this weekend contacted Girl Scouts of USA to ask for permission, which they are not required to do. They were told by an employee who does not work for the product-sales department that it is not favored to sell the cookies at the dispensary — causing a lot of confusion, said Yavonkia Jenkins, chief marketing officer of Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan.

"The troop leader was given incorrect information," Jenkins said. "Girl Scouts does not have a policy that prohibits troops from selling outside of or inside of legally operating businesses."

Jennifer Slayden, the mother of two junior Girl Scouts,  had planned on setting up shop in front of the dispensary this weekend with her daughters, a few other Girl Scouts and their mothers. But plans were suspended, she said, when the   troops from last weekend were "scolded after the fact."

Slayden said she was also told that it's not allowed because children aren't allowed to enter the store, when, in fact, they are.

Children with some form of "ailment" who have been prescribed a medical marijuana card can come with their parents to buy CBD products, Millen said.

The last group of troops  that sold cookies outside the Walled Lake dispensary did not ask for permission, so the Girl Scouts of USA. and Southeastern Michigan were not aware of the sale, which is allowed, Jenkins said. Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan troops can set up booth sales  on their own without approval.

After Millen and his team put the girls' success on social media, they started to gain some attention. Other Girl Scouts started to reach out to the dispensary, asking if they could sell cookies outside the facility.

"I said 'absolutely,' so I was gonna start signing them all up," Millen said.

The Girl Scouts called about seven other shops to ask if they can sell their cookies there this weekend,  but they were turned down each time.

Legally in Michigan, dispensaries are not allowed to sell food or drinks inside the facility, so Millen took it upon himself to buy 301 boxes of Girl Scout Cookies from the girls who were going to sell outside his shop today, to pass out for free tomorrow "just to prove a point." 

Greenhouse of Walled Lake owner Jerry Millen buys 301 boxes of Girl Scout cookies from Jennifer Slayden, 39, of Oakland County on Mar. 5, 2021, after Slayden, a mother of two Girl Scouts, was disappointed about her daughter's lack of opportunity to sell more Girl Scout Cookies after the Girl Scouts of the USA are forbidding the Oakland County Girls Scouts to sell their cookies in front of the Marijuana dispensary Greenhouse of Walled Lake after they had gangbuster sales last weekend.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Girl Scouts have had a hard time raising money.

"I used to be a Cub Scout and I sold popcorn and candy and I used to hustle and knock on doors," Millen said. "With the pandemic now you can't send kids door to door and things like that so it was a great setup for them last weekend and I'm sad for these young girls."

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The Girl Scout Cookie season was extended through April 28 to allow troops to sell as many cookies as they can, Slayden said.

"The very first line of the Girl Scout law is 'I will do my best to be honest and fair,' and for myself and my children, we don't think that this is fair — that you can't sell here but you can at a liquor store," she said.

Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan is contacting the troop leader to resolve this matter, Jenkins said. 

"I would love for somebody from the Girl Scouts of America to reach out to me so I can coordinate the opportunity for these young ladies and several troops to come to my store, every weekend, until cookie sales are over, to sell their cookies," Millen said. "We put 1,500 people a day through this store. That's 1,500 potential boxes."