By Linda Dillman
Connor Turney’s scouting journey began nine years ago as a Tiger Cub and is now culminating with an Eagle Scout project benefiting the Canal Winchester Area Historical Society.
His project involves restoring pathways throughout the society’s Chaney Elevator, Prentiss Schoolhouse and Queen of the Line Depot complex on North High Street at Oak Street.
The Canal Winchester High School junior, alongside mentors and family members, is redoing a brick staircase, a brick path that crosses a pair of train rails and a small set of wooden stairs at the front of the depot.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the completion of the project is scheduled for July 18 at 10 a.m.
“I chose this project because it was a good way to give back to the community,” said Connor. “I knew that the area was going to be used for more events, so I thought that doing the project could help make the area look nicer and safer.”
Challenges facing the future Eagle Scout not only included coordinating the people assisting him within social distancing guidelines established by the state, but tools as well.
“Midweek, we had a bit of a tool problem, so we had to adjust around that, and the screws used for the wooden stairs needed a special drill bit that we only had one of,” said Connor, who said an Eagle project centers both on the work and giving back to the community. “I think the best thing to come out of this project is the good press that the scout troop, the Historical Society and the farmer’s market are getting. I want to thank Mr. Tom Obert for his help in this project. He donated most of the concrete we used for the stairs, and brought his expertise to the project, and without him, this project would have taken a lot longer.”
Connor also thanked Brian Smithers, Rob Gilger, Bill Ruth, and Jeff Tomlinson for assisting him in the project.
Lisa Turney, the scout’s mother, said she liked her son’s project because of its contribution to the community.
“Connor had looked at several other projects, but this project was a more immediate need,” said Lisa.
She felt scouting is an incredible program for youth—not only because it teaches basic life skills, but also because it fosters a sense of community and a sense of commitment to that community.
“Since moving here, I have been really impressed with the community involvement of the scouts in Canal Winchester at all age levels,” said Lisa. “My children have had the opportunity to help with things as simple as cleaning flower beds and spreading mulch as Cub scouts. As they have gotten older, they have truly been able to give back and invest themselves in the community. From raising the flag at the football games, to actually helping build benches and patios in our parks. We may not have roots in Canal Winchester, but it is truly our town.”