BOY SCOUT EAGLE PROJECT AT SUNNYSIDEFrom August 2011 Tips & Tales
On June 4, 2011, Harvey Cox called and told us that Boy Scouts were working on the creek behind his house in the Glen on Glenside Drive. Harvey suggested that this Eagle Scout project would be a good article for Tips and Tales, so he invited us over and his neighbors, Sue and Dick Taylor, provided chairs for Helen and me to observe the work site in comfort.
The creek was originally designed to drain excess water from the lake next to the pavilion down to an existing creek near the west boundary of the Sunnyside property. When the rains were heavy, the creek would overflow the road and the banks and spread water to the backs of several houses on Glenside Drive.
Having been a scoutmaster for four years, I was aware of the amount of planning and dedicated effort necessary to reach the rank of Eagle. The selection, planning, and execution of the Eagle project was most challenging. Sunnyside was lucky in several ways. In years past, there had been two previous Troop 72 Eagle Projects; one built a bridge over a creek into the northeast end of the lake, and one built a bridge towards the southwest end of the creek.
A former member of Sunnyside’s corporate staff, Mark Graham, was our contact with the scout troop. Our Buildings and Grounds Director, Robert Schenk, met with the Scoutmaster and the Eagle scouts to approve the Eagle Project, order and coordinate the delivery of materials, and provide supervision during the project days. Our buildings and grounds staff previously cleaned up and dug out the streambed from the lake down to the intersection with the outflow stream, and one staff member stayed with the scouts during the project.
The Eagle candidate and project leader was Taylor Long of Troop 72 of the Grace Covenant Church. He attends Spotswood High School. Taylor had recruited nine scouts and two adult scout leaders from his troop, briefed them on the project objective, organized them into work parties, and supervised the work progress.
One group cut the landscape fabric and installed it over the streambed. The second group carried the rocks and stones from the stock piles to cover the landscape fabric and stream banks. It looked like some of the rocks may have been 25 - 30 pounds each, but each scout would move as much weight as they could carry from the pile to the creek bed.
As the distance from the pile to the uncovered landscape fabric got longer, one of the scout leaders drove the John Deere garden truck, with the boys loading the rocks from the pile into the truck, so the rocks could be moved closer to where the scouts were placing the stones. It looked like the boys ran out of landscaping fabric, so we left the project site.
I understand that additional fabric was delivered to the site and the boys came back on the following Saturday to complete the Eagle Project. The scouts of Troop 72 comprised a cooperative and dedicated group of boys of which we should be proud. I am also proud of Sunnyside for supporting the Boy Scouts of America and providing project opportunities to help them develop the American tradition of helping others.
Dick and Sue Taylor, who were among the first residents to move into the Glen, still live next to the “creek.” Dick said the nearby pond level doesn’t seem to stay up as much as it used to, so there’s seldom much, if any, water in the ditch now. But there has been some erosion at the southern end since the project was completed and it might be time to work on the project again. --Galen Moses