For the past five years, 11-year-old Ellisyn Ahmann, of Dickinson, has been selling cookies as a Girl Scout, toting around her deliveries one box at a time. Recently, the young Girl Scout sold more than 4,000 boxes of cookies, making her the top seller in both North and South Dakota.
Right down to the T, Ellisyn has the number of boxes memorized that she’s sold — 4,482. At the beginning, she didn’t anticipate selling that many boxes of cookies.
“My goal was actually 3,000 boxes, but I reached 4,000 which was really amazing,” Ellisyn said, adding that her favorite boxes of cookies are Do-Si-Dos and Tagalongs.
Going out to sell cookies is something Ellisyn enjoys because it’s a way to make people happy, she said. Though each sale is different, Ellisyn recalls a moment that a box of cookies made a difference in someone’s day.
“... I had one lady that came up and we were giving out flowers (with) each box and she bought a case… She came over and she bought a full bouquet and she just started crying because that made her day,” she added.
From popular selections of Samoas, Tagalongs and Thin Mints, Ellisyn noted that she’s been fortunate enough to have plenty of customers who come back each year, wanting to purchase their order of boxes. One of her favorite moments as a seller is being able to interact with people, even if it means sitting at a booth inside a store for eight hours.
As part of Girl Scouts Dakota Horizons, which is combined with both North and South Dakota, Ellisyn has developed a skill set that has made her more and more confident each year.
“It’s just important because you can always just make friends and then you’re meeting new people if you’re shy. I was really shy at the beginning, and then I just started opening up,” she said. “And you just learn that it’s really fun.”
As her mother, Tiffany Ahmann noted that Ellisyn has so much determination to accomplish the goals she sets.
“It’s amazing. It was a lot of work and she couldn’t stop because (she’s) one of those can’t stop, won’t stop. We were like, ‘Okay, we beat it.’ She’s like, ‘How about the next goal?’ So it’s very exciting that she just keeps pushing for more goals,” Tiffany said. “… After school time, I pick her up and she’s ready to go and I’m the driver… She gets a lot of compliments from people when she’s selling. She looks them in the eye. She’s very confident in who she is. They’ll put her on the spot with questions and she can answer them. It’s been a really good confidence builder, which is nice.”
Though she’s had a lot of loyal customers, Ellisyn’s troop is also known for giving back to different organizations throughout southwest North Dakota from veteran causes, schools, law enforcement agencies to nursing homes.
“It’s been really nice because people do donate. Even if they can’t eat them, they donate,” Tiffany said. “... We donate the cookies all around, so it’s been nice to give back.”
Next year, Ellisyn is hoping to reach for another milestone and sell 5,000 boxes of cookies.