I've mentioned these benches in passing, but wanted to do a full post on his project. As part of his work toward earning the Eagle Scout Rank, Classic Rock was required to...
"Plan, develop, and give leadership to a service project
for any religious organization or any school or community."
Last Spring, as he began to formulate his project, we discussed possible organizations he could partner with to provide something needed. He considered our church, certainly, but then discovered several of the parish's Scouts were already planning projects for the church grounds. The next obvious organization for our family to consider was the YMCA. We've been members for so many years and have really seen the difference the Y has made for our family and within our community. Many people do not realize the Y is actually a charity. A mission. We love our local Y and Classic Rock felt giving service to our branch was the best decision.
He spent a few days brainstorming possible projects that would benefit the Y building and grounds, then he arranged a meeting with the Branch Director. She gladly and joyfully accepted his offer to present the Y with his project and discussed some additional needs of their facility. After deliberation and input from some of the members, they decided new benches for the gymnasium was the perfectly scoped project. With some parameters regarding overall dimensions and materials desired, Classic Rock researched designs and plans for simple benches. Once he'd determined a viable option, he asked to present his information to the Property Committee. I checked him out of school early, he dressed in his full Class A uniform and readied his power point presentation. They agreed to his design ideas, loved his estimated cost - about $25 per bench - and encouraged him to move forward.
Then the work phase began in earnest. With his father, grandfather, Zydeco and a neighboring Scout offering help, Classic Rock constructed all the bench legs and pre-cut all the remaining boards. He sent an email to his fellow Troop members and asked for them to arrive early to a weekly meeting. They constructed five benches that evening and then he finished the sanding and sealing steps himself.
Out with the warped, wobbly, narrow benches!
Humoring his mother with "delivered" shot!
He delivered the first five benches in early December. The Y staff was thrilled to see the horrible benches go away and Classic Rock's creations take their rightful place. Within days, the Y members were stopping at the front desk to praise the wider, more comfortable seating. The shorter length also allows them to be moved around the gym, or even outside, as needed.
During the Christmas break, a few more Scouts spent the day with us building the remaining five benches. The boys were hilarious to listen to as they told jokes, gave orders, and generally insulted one another (all in good fun, of course). The younger Scouts earn service hour credit as they assist with these types of projects. Each Scouting rank requires a certain number of service hours be completed, so this day helped these boys advance in rank.
Zydeco helped Classic Rock seal all the benches with polyurethane, resulting in a massive mess of stickiness in the garage :) Once the benches were dry, Classic Rock loaded them for delivery.
Now for the paperwork and oral review! He's almost there!