Girl Scouts from Troop 2406 in Riverhead who spent over a year working on their Bronze Award opened hearts of gold for their four-legged friends.
The ten girls, who have spent over a year logging 20 hours of community service necessary to earn their Bronze Award -- the highest honor a junior Girl Scout can achieve -- dedicated their efforts to helping the dogs at the Riverhead Town Animal Shelter.
Over the past year, the tireless girls organized a dog food drive, collecting three truckloads of dog food to donate to the shelter, and decorated dog cut outs.
"It was very easy for them to decide that they wanted to do something for the Riverhead Animal Shelter," said the girls' troop leader, Renee Hayes. "They all love animals. They were amazed to see how the community came together when they found out the shelter was in need."
During the food drive, which took place at Riverhead stores including King Kullen, Walmart, Petco and Waldbaum's, residents were very generous, Hayes said, donating 40 pound bags of dog food.
"The girls have always participated in food drives for the less fortunate, but this is the first dog food drive they were a part of. They had a wonderful time, by decorating shirts to wear, and some even painting their faces to look like puppies," Hayes said.
The girls, along with their sister troops, spent one Saturday in April collecting the three truckloads of dog food and supplies and also assisted in unloading the trucks at the Riverhead Animal Shelter.
Remaining hours to finish earning their Bronze Award were spent sanding and painting wooden dog cut-outs to decorate the outside of the animal shelter; the girls wrapped up their 20 hours this week.
On Friday, Riverhead Raceway owners Barbara and Jim Cromarty also helped to beautify the animal shelter. The pair were present for the planting of the first of 71 trees donated to the town animal shelter; the trees were contributed as part of a NASCAR program earlier this year. The trees are meant to give the dogs at the shelter comfort and shade.