ELGIN, Texas — A room full of girls citing the Scout Law and Scout Oath. What they're doing may not seem like a big deal, but it is.
And they're the first young women in Elgin to do it.
For the first time, girls can do the same scout activities as the boys. This month, Boy Scouts of America — which has been around since 1910 — started welcoming young women to join its organization.
“Who here knows how to fold a flag properly?” Madison Woehl, senior patrol leader of Scout Troop 473, asked.
Woehl is leading the city's first all-girl troop within Boy Scouts of America. Wednesday night’s lesson was flag etiquette.
She said she’s waited a long time for this moment.
“I actually started crying in my car knowing that me and my mom were going to drop off paperwork at the BSA building, and I started crying and I was just balling my eyes out,” Woehl said. “I've been waiting for this for the longest time, and it just brought so much joy to me because I finally get to do what I love.”
Now she and more than a dozen other girls get to regularly go camping, hiking, “do the bow and arrows, the archery and all the fun stuff the guys got to do and when I was younger I was like, 'Why can't I ever do that?'”
“They want to throw a tomahawk, they want to shoot a .22, they want to do fire building and all that. That's what they want to do,” Scout Master Alicia Woehl said.
Those are things girls don't normally get to do.
They even sat-in on their first court of honor ceremony right across from the boys because now they can aspire to do that too.
“Knowing that we will be up there one day, getting our badges and ranking up and hopefully getting all the way to Eagle [Scout], that is just really special,” scout Aidan Flores said.
They’re able to prove that if boys can do it, girls can too.