July 16, 2018
School & Youth
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  • Erick Howard (right), seen here with SPUMC facilities manager Dave McKinney, recently led an effort to design, purchase and assemble benches on the church grounds as part of his Eagle Scout project.
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    Erick Howard (right), seen here with SPUMC facilities manager Dave McKinney, recently led an effort to design, purchase and assemble benches on the church grounds as part of his Eagle Scout project.

Eagle Scout Project Restores SPUMC Memorial Garden

John Kiser
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March 6, 2018

Wanting to give back to the people and building that graciously host his troop, Severna Park High School junior Erick Howard chose to design, purchase and assemble benches in the memorial garden of Severna Park United Methodist Church for his Eagle Scout project.

An active member of Troop 993 for the past five years, Howard felt compelled to help the church that not only sponsors his troop but also provides worship services for his family and others.

Due to the size and effort involved in this venture, Howard believed his plan would be suitable for his Eagle Scout project. This additionally fit the wishes of the church when he asked Dave McKinney, facilities manager, what the church’s pressing needs were during spring 2017. Once Howard had his idea, approvals and signatures from a variety of leaders were required so that he could sketch models and begin the construction process.

With the help of his mentor, John Haines, Howard finished his designs and informed his troop of his progress. By winter, Howard, McKinney and Haines, along with several scouts in Troop 993, were ready to break ground in the memorial garden.

After some long hours, a couple power saws and a whole lot of wood, the hard work of Howard and his team finally paid off. The last construction day was February 3, but the project is not finished.

“I will create a report on my project, stating any changes in design, man hours, cost, etc. The report then is sent to the Baltimore Area Council, and then I sit for my board of review sometime this summer or early fall,” Howard said.

Now that the benches have been installed at a clearing surrounding a podium in the garden, SPUMC can hold outdoor services and the scouts who diligently sacrificed many hours on behalf of enriching and improving their community can be compensated for their efforts.

Howard said, “Mr. McKinney was my liaison to the church and was a tremendous help in gathering support. Mr. Haines is my mentor throughout the project and ensured the design and product were sound constructions. My parents kept me on track and helped direct the process on the construction days. I also owe credit to my scouting friends that came out over the three days of construction to help me.”


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