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8115 is first all-girl troop in Northeast Ohio

April 10, 2019
J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

This year, the Boy Scouts of America have accepted girl troops and is changing the designations. All Boy Scout Troops will now be known as Scouts BSA Troops. The troops will either be all boys and signified by the number 9 starting off the troop number, or all girls signified with the number 8. At St. Michael's the former Troop 115 is now 9115 for boys and the newly-formed all-girl troop is 8115.

"This is the first new all-girl troop in Northeast Ohio and among the first all-girl troops in the nation," said Steph Kelly, scoutmaster of the new troop. "We have 12 girls in 8115 ranging from 11 to 16 years old."

The new all-girls troops were introduced into the Cub Scouts in June of 2018, according to Kelly. The all-girl troops were first allowed as of Feb. 1 this year.

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Members of Scouts BSA Troop 8115’s Fianna Patrol include Francesca Ditommaso, Olivia Weber, Charley Masters, Sophia Kadilak, Abby Mastasi, Arianna Burkey, and Sydney McLean.

"Half of the girls had a countdown going," she said.

The girls divided into patrols, with the older girls belonging to uWu Kazoo Patrol and the younger girls forming the Fianna Patrol. The word Fianna is Irish for deer. Both patrols are working on a design for their flags.

To begin, Troop 8115 started with leadership training. Last month they began picking up camping skills and learning about gear and cooking over a camp fire. Last week the learned how to pack a proper lunch and how to cook cinnamon rolls over a camp fire. This is all in preparation for their first camp out this weekend.

As for what the future holds for this new troop, Kelly said they can now earn all the badges the boys earn and can go after Eagle Scout projects.

"Some of the older girls have expressed the desire to do an Eagle Project," Kelly said.

Since the girls have a lot of catching up to do, they have developed an "EDGE" which stands for explain, demonstrate, guide, and enable. Using that guideline will help the new troop get up to speed faster.

The troop has also had some help from the boys side. Pat Kelly serves as Assistant Scoutmaster for Troop 2 in Poland and is Cub Master of Troop 9115 at St. Michael's. Last week he brought his camp fire knowledge and skills to the Troop 8115 meeting to pass along the skills to the girls.

By the end of April, Kelly said the all-girl troop will have made it through the initial leadership training. After that, the girls can begin to plan their annual calendar and pick their own monthly adventures in camping, hiking, travel, canoeing, and more.

Kelly said the Troop is still accepting girls age 11 and up and any girl considering joining is welcome to attend any meeting. Scout BSA Troop 8115 meets every Monday at 7 p.m. at the Family Life Center at St. Michael's Parish on North Broad Street in Canfield. For more information, email Kelly at



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