Westgate Park will receive new exercise equipment thanks to Boy Scout Joey Landers of Parkview United Methodist Church Troop 33.
The equipment includes horizontal chin-up bars and a sit-up bench. It is made of galvanized steel and positioned between the main parking lot and sidewalk.
Landers, a junior at St. Charles Preparatory School, recognized a need for the equipment after visiting a workout space at another park.
“I realized we didn’t have anything at Westgate like that,” Landers said, who decided to shape his Eagle Scout project around the idea.
Landers presented the idea to his troop and developed a plan that included construction, fundraising and public relations. The project was approved by the Columbus Department of Recreation and Parks and the Friends of the Westgate Park (FoWP).
“He had to put together detailed plans and they had to pass inspection from the city,” FoWP president Sue Laughlin said.
Landers raised around $1,500 through donations from family, friends and businesses. The project received aid from the Lowe’s National Eagle Scout Project Impact grant.
“It’s a big project for Joey,” Laughlin said.
The equipment is slated to be installed Nov. 3.
“That day we’ll clear out grass and dirt, dig holes and pour concrete for the footers,” said Landers.
Landers said a sign would be posted at the Westgate Recreation Center instructing visitors how to use the equipment.
“There used to be an old sit-up station at the park, but it was made of wood, and of course it splintered and rotted over the years,” Laughlin said. “So he’s really tried to look ahead and make it something that the city would approve and we would be happy with.”
Landers hopes the project will be well-received by the community.
“It will give people a place to strengthen and warm-up, and hopefully it will improve fitness in the community,” Landers said.
There are a number of improvements at Westgate Park, including landscaping, signage, murals and enhancements to the enclosed shelter house.
The FoWP applied for a grant from the Columbus Urban Infrastructure Recovery Fund to drain, clean and refill the park’s pond, a site utilized by the children’s fishing program in the summer.
The proposal is still in the review process, but FoWP members said they will continue beautifying the area to attract more visitors.