Eagle Scout project builds up Camp Shalom

News | February 16, 2017

Camp Shalom has been a big part of Alex Dickman’s life. So when he was searching for a project to complete to become an Eagle Scout, improving an area at camp came to mind.

Alex is a member of Troop 203 in Long Grove. He’s been a Cub Scout, then Boy Scout, since he was in first grade.

“I asked them what I could do,” said Alex, who is in eighth grade at North Scott Junior High. “We decided on a worship area on a cliff that overlooks the river.”

It’s called Raccoon Ridge. Alex designed, secured the materials/tools/donations for, and supervised the renovation. The project included clearing the space, installing a railing for safety, adding seating for approximately 30 people, and mulching. He also got a crew of 20-25 people to work on each of the the two days of the project in September.

The list of tools and materials needed? Impressive – sledge hammer, wheel barrows, water buckets, shovels, miter saw, drills, level, rubber mallets, pitchforks and garden rakes are just some of the items that Alex and his crew loaded up in trailers and hauled to camp (or borrowed from Camp Shalom).

The most challenging part? Alex said it was leading and delegating the project well, so that everyone who signed up to volunteer had work to do.

Dwayne Heinrich is the maintenance director at Camp Shalom. In the summer, Raccoon Ridge gets a lot of use, but needed some attention, he said.

Alex’s team cleared the space farther out than originally envisioned, making it even better than anticipated, Dwayne said. “The area is now much safer for people to use because of the railings. The construction method using blocks will help control erosion, and make for better usability and comfort.”

One of the challenges had to do with the limestone being close to the surface in that area of camp – it took work with picks and bars to remove pieces of limestone, Dewayne said. Alex’s team also included a professional tree person who was suspended by a rope off the cliff to help open up the view of the river. The tree waste was then turned into mulch.

Alex donated money he raised above the cost to camp. Everyone who helped in some way received a thank you letter, including photos of the completed project.

“Also, at the end of each work day, I shook everyone’s hand and told them thank you for helping,” Alex said.

As for his future plans in Scouting? Alex plans to continue on as a long as he can, to help others become leaders – just like he has become.

9 Comments on “Eagle Scout project builds up Camp Shalom”

  • Henry Olsen

    February 18, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    Now you know first hand how a big project takes many people to make it go. You have also learned how a project requires leadership. The world always needs competent, servant leadership. So thank you for your service to God, to others and to yourself.
    Yours in Scouting,
    Henry Olsen

  • Jerry and Teresa Zinn

    February 16, 2017 at 11:56 pm

    Great choice for your Eagle project. I’m sure the pictures don’t do justice to the hard work that went into this project. You are well on your way to becoming an Eagle Scout. You will never regret this accomplishment. Sincere congratulations!

  • Deb Anderson

    February 16, 2017 at 9:33 pm

    Great story! Congratulations on a job done well, Alex! Lots of planning and hard work went into your project, and many people will enjoy the worship space you created! We are all proud of you!

  • Brian & Amy Lovig

    February 16, 2017 at 8:35 pm

    Wow! Great work, Alex!

  • Dennis and Kay Chaney

    February 16, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    We are so proud of this grandson of ours and hope to visit this worship area. It looks beautiful. What an inspiration to others.

  • Jennie Barnds

    February 16, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Way to go, Alex! We are so proud of the improvements you made that will be enjoyed by thousands of campers in the years to come.

  • Rachel Evans

    February 16, 2017 at 3:36 pm

    Raccoon Ridge is one of my favorite spots at Camp Shalom! Thank you for making it a safer and more beautiful worship space!

  • marci barnhart

    February 16, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    Very proud of the project Alex chose. David is an Eagle Scout and he carries a lot of the values & pride in his work ethics and the way he handles projects on a daily basis . Boys Scouts shapes wonderful young men…Alex is a wonderful example!

  • Marge Irwin

    February 16, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    WOW! You sure have the skills and know how to make things happen.
    Keep up the good work.

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