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Girl Scouts roll out sustainable shopping project; local stores make it on the map

Girl Scout Sarah Kessler developed maps showing locations of sustainable fashion and secondhand stores in northern Minnesota, including locations in Akeley, Dorset and Park Rapids.

Girl Scout Sarah Kessler developed this map of secondhand stores in northern Minnesota.
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The Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin Lakes and Pines Council has introduced a sustainable store shopping map and a secondhand store map for north central and northeastern Minnesota.

Featuring stores in the local area, the maps highlight stores that sell responsibly and locally made and/or Fair Trade Certified products.

According to Sarah Kessler, a member of Girl Scout Troop 1483, she developed the maps as a Gold Award project. The Gold Award is the highest award a Girl Scout can earn, showing a lasting impact on the community and effecting change to a real problem.

“The more we know, the more we can make informed, ethical decisions,” she said. “This experience has taught me a lot about the reality of business and being sustainable.”

Kessler’s project focuses on spreading awareness about sustainable fashion. Her maps identify which stores provide sustainable shopping and secondhand clothing. The maps are available online at VisitGrandRapids.com under Things To Do / Shopping & Services, and on Instagram @fashion_or_planet_choose_both.


Local businesses listed on the secondhand stores map include the Akeley Regional Community Center, Akeley Thrifty Treasures, Angelic Enterprises and Bearly Used Thrift Store. Among the locations listed as offering sustainable shopping are the Little Dorset Shop and the Trading Post.

Kessler also made a short video about the project, which is available on YouTube at “Fashion Or Planet? Choose Both!” or youtu.be/bkuFrthgrhw.

Kessler, who has been a Girl Scout for five years, reached out to more than 80 stores from PArk Rapids to Grand Marais. She said she chose the topic because she was “surprised to learn how damaging the fashion industry is to the environment” and “wanted to show people how they could support a better industry.”

Kessler also serves as a Girl Scout national delegate and a member of the Girl Scout National Merchandising Team.

For more information about the Lake and Pines Council, call 800-955-6032 or visit www.girlscoutslp.org.

Related Topics: FASHION
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