Virginia Girl Scouts to be part of first-ever White House campout

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ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - Girl Scouts of Virginia Skyline will be given a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity by First Lady Michelle Obama, who will hold the first-ever campout at the White House this Tuesday, June 30.

Officials say the campout is co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of the Interior and will celebrate the National Park Service centennial as well as Great Outdoors Month. It will take place in one of the most historic backyards and national parks in the nation - the White House South Lawn.

As honorary national president of Girl Scouts of the USA, the First Lady will welcome 50 fourth-grade Girl Scouts to participate in activities to earn the new Girls' Choice Outdoor badges. The Girl Scouts will engage in both new and traditional outdoor activities, including rock wall climbing, putting up tents, knot tying, and orienteering.

Later that evening, the participants will be joined by NASA astronaut Cady Coleman, who will join a stargazing activity led by NASA staff and scientists on the South Lawn before the girls settle in for the night.

On Monday, June 29, six local Ambassador Girl Scouts will be in route to Washington DC for the campout where they will lead the activities for the outdoor badges. Girls from Virginia Skyline Girl Scouts will join girls from Girl Scouts of Central Maryland, Girl Scouts of Black Diamond Council, Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma and Girl Scouts of Nation's Capital to participate in a day of outdoor fun and exercise as part of First Lady Michelle Obama's "Let's Move Outside" initiative, which aims to get kids active outdoors in order to explore nature and develop healthy habits.

Local Girl Scouts attending:

Taylor Bauer, Staunton GS Troop 834

Samantha Houck, Goode GS

Aniyah King, Danville GS Troop 160

Chelsea Noel, Weyers Cave GS

Emma Pray, Elkton GS Troop 109

Whitney White, Danville GS Troop 160

"We are very excited to be joining the First Lady in her mission to help children move outdoors," said Jean Ann Hughes, CEO of Girl Scouts of Virginia Skyline Council in a written statement, released on Monday. "Helping girls explore the great outdoors has been a cornerstone element of Girl Scouts for over a century, and providing girls with unique opportunities like a White House campout is what Girl Scouts is all about. I want to thank the First Lady for this extraordinary opportunity for our girls!"