Elks, Brownies forge partnership | AspenTimes.com

Elks, Brownies forge partnership

Tim Mutrie

On the surface, it seems an unlikely partnership.

But Aspen’s Elks Club and a newly founded Brownie Troop have linked up in a partnership that works well for everyone, including the community at large.

And the partnership has enabled 20 ambitious, civic-minded Aspen girls to contribute to the community while learning to be model younger versions of the Girl Scouts.

The two groups officially celebrated their partnership at a dinner at the Elks Club Lodge last night. Brownie Troop No. 257 was launched in January, and since then, its first- and second-grade members have accomplished a number of things for the benefit of the community, and in turn, themselves.

“The Elks have provided a really lovely opportunity for us, they’ve enabled us to do a number of great things we couldn’t have done otherwise,” said Barbara Krutchkoff, troop co-leader and mother of a 7-year-old Brownie. “And the girls have all this energy and they’re happiest when they’re giving back to the community, it’s amazing.”

The Brownies and Elks recently teamed up to host a dinner for seniors of the valley, Krutchkoff said, with the Elks providing the lodge and dinner, and the Brownies serving the feast. On Easter, the girls volunteered to help hide Easter eggs for the Aspen Historical Society’s annual hunt. The Brownies stashed eggs in an area devoted to little children, and after the work was done, the Brownies joined in the hunt in the older kids’ area.

“We have a great group of moms involved, too – we’re going to call them the council of elders for next year,” Krutchkoff noted. “It’s a wonderful opportunity to teach our daughters things that aren’t emphasized in school, like respecting one another, values, and such. We’re giving them a sense of self-esteem by enabling them to work on these projects, and also to be fiscally responsible with dues and fund raising.

“The Elks are really excited about this cross-generational partnership,” she added. “The Elks have lots of money and these kids don’t have much in the way of resources, but they’ve got tons of energy. The whole thing seems to work really well.”

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