Special to Niagara Now/The Lake Report
While everyone has been disappointed this past year by the cancellation of activities, the Sparks, the five- and six-year-old Girl Guides, continued to gather in the safest possible way while meeting or, in many cases, exceeding provincial public health guidelines.
Last fall, we were able to meet outside with social distancing (hula hoops), Spark-made "sit upons" and masks. The restrictions didn't dampen the spirits of these incredibly outgoing, cheerful and resilient girls.
Having fun and participating in updated yet traditional Guiding activities is important but the Sparks are also proud of their community contributions.
In November, 19 veterans were thanked for their service when the Sparks mailed hand-written and decorated postcards to men and women identified by the Legion. It was definitely dark and nippy when we met outside to decorate grocery bags for Newark Neighbours' Christmas clients, but that didn't deter us. Accessorizing anything is what we do best!
Virtual meetings started and the girls heard from Spark Mom Emma Thwaites, whose family farm hires migrant workers. Then they created drawings to go into the welcome packages that are given to our migrant workers on their arrival in NOTL.
Creating virtual meetings that are engaging for young ones is a challenge. In February, when the Mars rover landed, Guider Ann Deuerlein used that as her theme. After talking about this amazing feat, the Sparks used Play-Doh to create aliens.
On Monday, May 3, we celebrated moms with a virtual tea party and fancy hats, many of them hand-decorated. Our thanks to Erinn Lockard and James Cadeau from Sweets and Swirls Café, who catered the event by baking yummy cookies, selecting special teas for moms and daughters, and delivering the goodies to all of our homes in beautifully decorated boxes.
Sparks introduced their guests and we heard heart-warming stories about each Spark from her mom. We ended the meeting by reading two books, Curious George's "Mother's Day Surprise" and "Winnie the Pooh: I Love You, Mama."
We will continue with virtual meetings for the remainder of the school year. Like everyone else, we hope that in-person meetings will resume in the fall. Registration for the 2021/2022 year will open soon on the Girl Guide website https://register.girlguides.ca/