Eagle Scout Troop 515 Planning Cleanup at Lake Howard in Winter Haven
by James Coulter
The Boy Scout motto is “to help other people at all times.” And what better way to help the people living on the Chain of Lakes than to help clean those lakes?
Eagle Scout Troop 515 will be hosting a cleanup at Lake Howard in Winter Haven on Dec. 2. The cleanup will serve as their troop’s scout project.
Through their project, which they have coordinated with city officials, they will collect litter and other debris along the lake shores and waters. They will also take notes to collect data to share with the City of Winter Haven.
“We service where we scout,” said Scout Master David S. Hayes. “That is the huge theme in our city.”
The Eagle Scout Troop in Winter Haven was established in 1977. They meet at Christ Cross Episcopal Church every Monday evening. Despite their dwindling numbers, they will be approaching their 100th scout.
“We are dwindling in troop numbers per unit, so there are fewerscouts in the community,” Hayes said. “We are still hanging in there. Scouting is a challenge, it is a journey, but we have great strong men here who are the future leaders of the country.”
Zack Zellers, 16, is a high school student at Lake Wales. He has been scouting since first grade. He is currently undergoing the process to become an Eagle Scout rank.
Zack remains excited for his troop’s upcoming project in December. He hopes to be able to service his local community and gain valuable life skills that he can use to better assist his community.
“I admire working with amazing leadership,” he said. “I have been on the scouting path for a long time, and I have life skills like etiquette to camping and survival skills. What I appreciate most is getting out there in the community feeling active and helpful.”
His father, Jason Zellers, has been involved with scouting for ten years. He appreciates how the local organization helps young boys like his son grow up into young men.
“It is exciting,” he said. “Many of the service projects these entire groups are involved with are very exciting. It is great to give back to the community. [I appreciate how it teaches them] leadership skills, responsibility, giving back to those less fortunate, whether it is a canned food drive or a community cleanup, [and] overall the responsibility to be a responsible young adult.”
For more information about the Eagle Scouts, visit their website at: https://www.scouting.org/