MAHOPAC, N.Y. - Earlier this fall, Mahopac Boy Scout Troop 371 had a landmark day.  At the Centennial Golf Club, seven Troop 371 scouts were presented scouting’s highest award—the Eagle Scout rank.

As a requirement for the rank, Scouts Andrew Baron, Michael Buzea Jr, Austin Kuhbier, Chris Nealon, Danny O’Neill, Mario Termine, and Tommy Zelley all proposed, planned and led service projects at the Mahopac Public Library, St John’s RC Church, VFW Post 5491, the Chamber Park and Volz Town Park.

The Scouts, in consultation with the beneficiary organizations, researched their projects and prepared proposals for presentation to the Scout District Committee.  Upon approval, they began planning all aspects of their projects. This included meetings, budgeting and fundraising, drawings and sketches, material acquisition, recruiting helpers and organizing work sessions. In addition to the project, the Scouts were required to earn at least 21 merit badges, of which 13 were in required subject areas. They also held positions of responsibility while participating in the Scout troop meetings and activities. During their time in the scouting program, they developed skills of leadership, citizenship, camping, cooking, first aid, personal management and become self-confident and self-reliant members of our community.

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Their individual project descriptions follow.

Andrew Baron

The Mahopac Public Library was the recipient of this project. 

The library had a rusted broken bicycle rack on the side of the parking area.  The project involved the removal and disposal of the old rack and the design, fabrication, and installation of the new bicycle rack.  By Hammer By Hand, a local metalwork business in Mahopac, provided the workshop to fabricate the new rack. Baron worked with the workshop owner to learn welding and metal fabrication skills. A new planter was also constructed and placed next to the bicycle rack.

Michael Buzea

This was a beautification project for the Church of St John the Evangelist in Mahopac. The project involved the design and fabrication of planter boxes that were placed at both entrances to the main sanctuary of the church.  The six 2-by-4-foot boxes were fabricated out of wood and filled with topsoil.  Perennial plants that required minimal care were placed in each box. 

Austin Kuhbier

VFW Post 5491 on East Lake Boulevard was the location of this project.  The Post Hall, which is on Lake Mahopac, has docks and a swimming area on the lakefront. The permanent dock on the side of the property was extremely old and in very poor condition. The surface of the dock was replaced and about 30 feet of the end was removed.  Additionally, the fence that separated the area from the adjoining property was replaced.

Chris Nealon

This project was the installation of a permanent chess/checker in the Chamber Park in Mahopac. The chess/checker table also included permanent seats around the table. The table and seat are concrete and were transported to the park. 

Daniel O’Neill

This project involved the construction of a new nativity stable in front of the Church of St John the Evangelist in Mahopac. The new stable replaced an older one that was heavy and not easily disassembled and transported. Lighting, hay and moss were included. The stable was designed to be easily taken apart and stored on plastic containers during the rest of the year.

Mario Termine

Volz Park located up the hill off of Route 6 in Mahopac was the location of this project. The project was primarily the restoration of the existing trails and creating new ones. Many dead and fallen trees had to be removed. A new map and guide to the park were mounted in the frame at the park entrance. The area at the park entrance was cleared and landscaped. New benches made from recycled pallets were placed at the entry.

Thomas Zelley

This project took place at the Church of St John the Evangelist in Mahopac. The area in front of the Bishop Mahoney Building has a landscaped garden and picnic area. The garden was overgrown and in need of weeding and removal of dead plants. The picnic benches had rotted boards that needed to be replaced. All the tables were resurfaced and painted.

Article courtesy of David Ames/Troop 371