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Scout leads landscaping crew in a city beautification project

July 16, 2009|By MARLO BARNHART

As a soccer player, Kyle Marshall is used to watching the skies to determine whether a game will be played.

The weekend of July 11 and 12, Kyle was checking the weather for a different reason.

As part of his Eagle Scout requirements, Kyle, 15, supervised a massive two-day landscaping project at the Hagerstown Ice & Sports Complex next to Fairgrounds Park.

It turned into a three-day project, with Kyle and five of his helpers returning Monday, according to his mother, Patricia Marshall.

The Scouts worked all day Saturday and Sunday with a total of 10 people. On Monday, they put down about 20 more loads of mulch and finished cleaning up.

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A member of Boy Scout Troop 4, Kyle said he wanted to find something to help the community and figured this would be an ideal choice.

Kyle, his mother and Mike Kelly, Kyle's Scoutmaster, met with Junior Mason, director of parks and recreation for the City of Hagerstown, at the project site.

"We walked around looking at the site and Mason made suggestions," Patricia Marshall said. One of those suggestions was to have a light that will shine on the flagpole in front of the building.

Overgrown plant material - 50 wheelbarrow loads - and lava rock were removed, fresh mulch applied and new plants put in. Kyle said the city furnished the plants and the tools for the project.

Kyle said his role was to be supervisor and direct his fellow troop members and other friends in the efforts.

Kelly, who has been a Scoutmaster for 10 years, said he has had experience with the City of Hagerstown and Washington County officials on Eagle Scout projects such as Kyle's.

"They both have stepped up a couple of times," Kelly said. "They are happy to have the free labor."

While the project won't complete his Eagle Scout requirements, it will advance his position.

"I'm really excited about this," Kyle said.

Kyle will be a 10th-grader this fall at Williamsport High School, where he plays tennis and basketball.

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