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Scout Troop 27, Fox Island

Boy Scouts of America on Fox Island

Boy Scout Troop 27, headquartered at the Nichols Community Center on Fox Island, is the 'official' Fox Island Scout Troop. 

Boys aged 11 to 17 are encouraged to join; contact John Ohlson at 253-380-4100 for more information, or visit us on the web: Troop27BSA.com

Fox Island Cub Scouts Recruiting New Members

Pack 27's members at a recent Pack Meeting at the Nichols center.
We are seeking new members, grades 1 - 4, for Cub Scout Pack 27

 

 

Scouts Provide Warmth at Christmas

Scouts from Fox Island's Troop 27 and Cub Scout Pack 27 built the bonfire for this year's Christmas tree lighting Ceremony, helping keep carolers warm in the chilly night air.

 

 

 

FICRA Sponsors New Cub Scout Pack 27

October 6, 2011
At the October 2011 FICRA meeting, FICRA Board members voted unanimously to sponsor Cub Scout Pack 27, to be based at the Nichols Community Center on Fox Island.

To date, 7 boys have joined the Pack, and most have already earned their Bobcat badges!  Their first outing will be to Camp Ramblewood near Sequim. 

Fox Island boys ages 7 - 10 years old are encouraged to join, visit Pack 27 website for more information.

Boy Scout Troop 27 Goes to High Places!

Troop 27 on the summit of Mt. BeljicaFICRA Sponsors Boy Scout Troop
Boy Scout Troop 27, headquartered at the Nichols Community Center on Fox Island, is the 'official' Fox Island Scout Troop. 

Boys aged 11 to 17 are encouraged to join; contact John Ohlson at 253-380-4100 for more information, or visit us on the web: Troop27BSA.com

Meetings are held at 6:30 PM at the Nichols Community Center, on the second & third Mondays of the month.

Scouts of Troop 27 on the summit of 5,475 foot Mt. Beljica, in the Glacier View Wilderness area. 
Visit Troop27BSA.com for more information on how to join.  Don't miss out on all the fun, see you there!
 
Troop 27 Voted "Troop of The Year" for 2008
In it's first year, the Scouts from Troop 27 earned the distinction of being the best in the Tacoma/Gig Harbor area.  This honor is given to the troop that has an active outdoor program, trained youth and leaders, supports the advancement of its members and promotes youth leadership of the Troop.

Now in its fourth year, Troop 27 boasts 30 members, and six Scouts who have reached the Eagle Rank.


Scouts from Troop 27 learn about high-altitude cooking

Venture Crew 27 - High Adventure Coed Youth Group

Venture Crew 27 of Fox Island
Fox Island's Venture Crew 27 is looking for Gig Harbor area High School aged boys and girls
(ages 14 - 21) who are looking for
rugged high adventure or challenging sporting activities, in a follow-on program after Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, that is more age-appropriate for older teens.

Venturing is a year-round program for young men and women who are 14 through 20 years of age, to provide positive experiences through exciting and meaningful youth-run activities that help them pursue their special interests, grow by teaching others, and develop leadership skills.

Venturing is a coed program is designed for young adults who are looking for rugged high adventure or challenging sporting activities and still want to be a part of a Scouting program that offers the advancement opportunities and values of the Boy Scouts of America.

Contact Us if you are interested, and we'll send you some information about Venturing in Fox Island and Gig Harbor.

 

Colin Rivera Makes Eagle!


Colin Rivera, Troop 27's twelfth Eagle Scout, passed his board of review on August 12, 2013.  He is the first Scout in Troop 27 to complete his Eagle Scout requirements in 2013. 

His Eagle Scout project consisted of building raised bed garden boxes for the Fox Island Community Garden.

Fox Island's Troop 27 Welcomes 5 New Eagle Scouts

March 9, 2013
Cameron Allen, Colin Wilson, Nathan David, Sravan Konda and Spencer Godfrey all of Fox Island's Boy Scout Troop 27 have earned the Eagle Scout award, and received their Eagle Medals in a ceremony March 9th, attended by over 100 people, and featuring keynote speaker Congressman Derek Kilmer, PenMet Parks Executive Director Terry Lee, and others. 

Each Eagle Scout organized volunteers to complete service projects in the Gig Harbor & Fox Island area during 2012, including renovations to the Fox Island Sandspit Demolay building, replacement of an aging staircase on a beach trail, and picnic tables at the Sandspit.  Other projects included extending raised boardwalks at the Fox Island Nature Center, and new coldframes installed at the Wilkeson Family Farm Community Garden.

The ceremony marks the advancement of a total of 11 Eagle Scouts from Fox Island's Troop 27 in just five years.  2012 was also the 100th Anniversary of the Eagle Scout award, and each of these boys received a 'Centennial Edition' of the Eagle badge, shown above, for completing their requirements during the centennial year.  Most of the new Eagles are also members of Venturing Crew 27, a coed Scouting group for young men and women ages 14 - 21 years old.  The Crew is planning to scale Mt. St. Helens in October, and perform a number of other service projects in the coming year.

Cameron Allen (top left) helped renovate the Fox Island Sandspit's old Demolay building, by removing an unsafe chimney and repairing the wall where it once stood.  The salvaged bricks were used by Nathan David's Eagle project, where he replaced a set of rotting stairs leading down to the beach, near the sandspit. 

Sravan Konda (below) built raised walkways for the Fox Island Nature Center, Spencer Godfrey built two new picnic tables for the sandspit and Colin Wilson built a coldframe for the Wilkeson Family farm garden in Gig Harbor.

Shown above is Eagle Scout Colin Wilson's cold frame, built for the Wilkeson's Family Farm community garden.

To the right is Eagle Scout Sravan Konda, and the raised boardwalk he built for the Fox Island Nature Center.

Find out more about Scouting on Fox Island  for all ages of boys at Troop27BSA.com Pack27BSA.com and VentureCrew27.com

 

 

Cameron Allen
Makes Eagle!


Cameron Allen, Troop 27's eleventh Eagle Scout, passed his board of review on January 4, 2013. He is the fifth Scout in Troop 27 to complete his Eagle Scout requirements in 2012.


Colin Wilson, Troop 27's tenth Eagle Scout passed his board of review on December 29, 2012. He is the fourth Scout in Troop 27 to earn the Centennial Eagle Scout badge, marking the 100th anniversary of the Eagle Scout Award.

Colin Wilson
Makes Eagle!

Nathan David
Makes Eagle!


Nathan David, Troop 27's ninth Eagle Scout passed his board of review on December 29, 2012. He is the third Scout in Troop 27 to earn the Centennial Eagle Scout badge, marking the 100th anniversary of the Eagle Scout Award.

Spencer Godfrey, Troop 27's eighth Eagle Scout passed his board of review on August 13, 2012.  He is the second Scout in Troop 27 to earn the Centennial Eagle Scout badge, marking the 100th anniversary of the Eagle Scout Award.

Spencer Godfrey
Makes Eagle!

Sravan Konda
Makes Eagle!

Sravan Konda, Eagle Scout

Sravan Konda, Troop 27's Seventh Eagle Scout passed his board of review on
April 16, 2012.  He is the first Scout in Troop 27 to earn the Centennial Eagle Scout badge, marking the 100th anniversary of the Eagle Scout Award.

 

Venture Crew 27 Celebrates Eagle Scouts
Evan Iverson and RickJohn Dodge


Eagle Scout Evan Iverson

Eagle Scout RickJohn Dodge

March 14, 2012
Fox Island's Venture Crew 27 recently produced it's first two Eagle Scouts, Evan Iverson and RickJohn Dodge.  Both young men had worked their way through the ranks as Boy Scouts, and recently joined Venture Crew 27.  Each had completed their Eagle requirements in December 2011, and passed their board of review in early 2012.  Congratulations!

FICRA Celebrates Six New Eagle Scouts!
April 9, 2011 - Five members of Fox Island's Troop 27 attain the rank of Eagle, the highest award in Boy Scouting.


Alex Ohlson
of Fox Island, Jesse Long of Gig Harbor, Grant Toepfer, Jensen Bond, Max Reetz and Dallas Thornton of Fox Island all earned the special '2010 Centennial Edition' of the Eagle badge.

The boys topped off an exciting year of Scouting in 2010, including sleeping in snow caves, canoeing in Puget Sound, sleeping under the stars and fishing at summer camp, and taking a trip to Fort AP Hill, VA to participate in the 2010 National Scout Jamboree, where they joined 40,000 other Scouts in BSA's Centennial Celebration.

Each of the Scouts completed a Community Service Project at the Fox Island Nature Center, which involved building three picnic areas, a raised walkway and staircase, and a trail improvement project that creates a new trail leading to the Nature Center's footbridge.

Only 5 percent of Boy Scouts earn the rank of Eagle, and of the 13 charter members of Troop 27, these six boys make up 46 percent of those who started the trail to Eagle together in Troop 27's first year.

Tony Moore, FICRA's Chartered Organization Representative to the Troop, presented a commemorative plaque to Troop Committee Chairman Bill Reetz, listing the names of the Eagle Scouts who have joined the "Troop 27 Eagle Scout Honor Roll".

The plaque will be displayed in the Scouts meeting place at the Nichols Center.

 


As 2011 begins, the boys have helped form Venture Crew 27, a BSA young adult oriented youth group sponsored by FICRA, for boys and girls aged 14 - 21.

Learn more about Scouting on Fox Island at:
 www.Troop27BSA.com
 

Scouting in our Community

The many contributions to Fox Island from Scouts over the years are greatly appreciated by FICRA and the Fox Island community.  Several of the projects completed by Fox Island scouts in recent years are described below.

Fox Island is home to Boy Scout Troop 27, Cub Scout Pack 27, and Venturers from Crew 27
Other Scout Troops in the Gig Harbor area include Troop 212, Troop 217, Troop 282
Boys aged 6 to 17 can join Scouts, and boys and girls ages 14 to 21 can join Venturing.

Junior Girl Scout Troop 4290, meets at the NCC.

Cub Scout Pack 202 - Fox Island, Gig Harbor, WAFICRA supports scouting in many ways, from providing opportunities for scouts to serve the community, to providing meeting space for island scout groups.

Fox Island's Cub Scouts participate in a Cubmobile race in 2007.

 

 

If you are interested in joining Cub Scouts, please contact:

bullet

John Ohlson from Pack 27 on Fox Island/Gig Harbor at 253-380-4100 or Contact Us

bulletLearn more about the Cub Scouting program

If you are interested in joining Boy Scouts, please contact:

bulletJohn Ohlson from Troop 27 on Fox Island, at 253-549-2701 (Nichols Community Center)
bulletMargaret Buchannan from Troop 282 in Gig Harbor, at 253-265-3521 (Gig Harbor Elks Lodge)
bulletRandy Turley from Troop 217 in Gig Harbor, at 253-858-5759 (St. John's Episcopal church)
bulletCliff Uehlin from Troop 212 in Gig Harbor, at 253-265-8345 (Chapel Hill church)
bulletLearn more about the Boy Scouting program


Fox Island's Tiger Cub Scouts, 2003

If you are interested in joining Girl Scouts, please contact:

bulletGirl Scouts of Western Washington
Junior Girl Scout Troop 4290 meets at the Nichols Community Center

 

 

Cub Scouts from Pack 202 and Girl Scouts from Troop 290 and Troop 1106 perform the Memorial Day flag ceremony at the Fox Island Cemetery.

 

 

Fox Island Cub Scouts Plant New Christmas Tree For FICRA

In the summer of 2005, Cub Scouts from Fox Island's Pack 202, planted a new Christmas Tree in front of the Nichols Center.

In a few years, the tree is expected to grow large enough to serve as the Christmas Tree for the Fox Island community tree lighting ceremony

In the meantime, it will be the 'little brother' tree to the traditional 20' tall one, which is decorated by the Fox Island Volunteer Fire Fighters, and donated by Ketcham Evergreens of Fox Island.

The Cubs also installed birdhouses in the
Fox Island Nature Center.


Cub Scouts Shea Brown, Garrett Stephens, Alex Ohlson, and Ben Long admire the new tree.

Fox Island's Eagle Scouts - In Service To The Fox Island Community


Musgrave family Eagle Scouts: Alex (2000), Robert (1992), Don (1962), Bob (1932) and Zach (1998).

The Musgrave family, three generations of Eagle Scouts, includes Don Musgrave (center) his father and three sons.

Don's father became an Eagle Scout in 1932, and Don became an Eagle Scout in 1962. Don’s oldest son, Robert, became an Eagle Scout in 1992. His second son, Zach, became an Eagle Scout in 1999, and his third son, Alex, became an Eagle Scout in June 2000.

Zach organized the painting of the Fox Island lighthouse for his Eagle Project in 1998. We did it during two low tides in late August and early September. We had 20 foot scaffolding the we had to put up and take down as we worked around the base. The 20 feet wouldn't even reach half way up. 

First we had to pressure wash the entire structure. It is a lot bigger than it looks from the bridge. We had older scouts and adults tied in at the top doorway door (there used to be an outside stairway according to Ed Winkle, who was living on the island at the time) and using long extensions to paint up and down. It was a lot of fun. Too bad they current owners haven't replace the top of the lighthouse and repainted again.

Robert earned his Eagle while a member of Troop 32 in Lakewood. His project was to create a flower garden at the entrance to Waughop Lake in Fort Steilacoom Park. They cleaned up an existing area, hauled in and arranged rocks, filled in with dirt and planted flowers and flowering shrubs. They also, repainted the entrance sign.

For his project, Alex organized and supervised the making and hanging over a dozen bird houses at the Gig Harbor Country Club. This was part of the Clubs certification as a "wildlife" golf course.

Lowell Torgerson - James Bond Look-alike - Sean Connery Impersonator Lowell 'Dick' Torgerson
Eagle Scout, James Bond Lookalike

Lowell Torgerson is one of the most convincing James Bond 007 impersonators you will ever see.

A former military man, Minister and Bed & Breakfast owner, Lowell has mastered the '007 Bond Look', and has also appeared as Sean Connery, and King Arthur.

Torgerson has appeared as James Bond at many corporate functions, Bond Nights, and much more.

Lowell passed away in 2014.


Alex (2010) & John Ohlson (1973), Eagle Scouts
The Ohlson Family - Two Generations of Eagle Scouts from Troop 27, including Alex (left) and John.  When Alex earned his Eagle Scout rank in December 2010, it was nearly 37 years to the day from the date his father John earned his Eagle in 1973.

John's old Troop 27 from Tacoma folded up in the late '70s, and never did start up again.  In 2007, when Alex was ready to graduate from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts, they decided to start a new Troop 27 right here on Fox Island.  With FICRA's sponsorship, the new Troop got started with only 7 boys.  By the end of the third year, membership had grown to 25 boys, and five of the original seven had earned their Eagle rank, including Alex.

Alex's Eagle project was to join forces with Eagle Scouts Jesse Long and Grant Toepfer to build three picnic and activity areas in the undeveloped area of the Fox Island Nature Center.

In November 2010, John and Alex founded Venture Crew 27, along with 8 other Fox Island youth; a coed youth group for boys and girls ages 14 - 21, based on Fox Island.

In November, 2011, John founded Cub Scout Pack 27, also sponsored by FICRA, completing the entire cycle of Scouting programs on Fox Island.

Matt Randle (2002) built FICRA's Fire Pit for his Eagle project, which is used for summertime fireside programs featuring storytellers, historical re-enactors, and marshmallow roasts. 
The fire pit was dedicated to Matt's Grandfather, George Miller, of the Fox Island Historical Society.


Matt Wiley (2004), son of Jeanette and Tom Wiley, built FICRA's cedar picnic tables, which are located in the Nichols Center gazebo.

Mark McKinney (2004) refurbished the FICRA flagpole, repainted and installed new hardware, and a tiled base.

Keith Buchanan (2005) built the Fox Island Nature Center's footbridge, involving over 500 hours of volunteer labor, and donated materials.

 


John Uehlin, (2006) with parents Cliff and Melaney, built the 10 park benches located at the Fox Island Nature Center.  His project made use of volunteer labor and donated materials.

Ryan Eason - Native Species Garden
February, 2007 - Eagle Scout candidate Ryan Eason of Boy Scout Troop 212 recently completed his Eagle Scout service project - a Native Species Garden, showcasing the various plants & trees that grow in the various climate zones of Washington State.

 

 

 

 

Above, Scouts Ryan Eason, Garrett McKinney and friend put the final touches on the garden

 

 

The garden features five distinct climate zones; Lowland Western Washington, Montane Forests, Sub-Alpine Forests, Alpine Forests, and the Ponderosa Forests of Eastern Washington.

Congratulations, Ryan on a job well done!

Nichols Center Gets New Flagpole
On Saturday, March 3rd, 2007, members of Cub Scout Pack 202, Den 7 raised the new flagpole at the Nichols Center.

The cubs built the new flagpole from a fir tree found on Fox Island, and they spent three months making it; stripping the bark, polishing the wood, and applying varnish & hardware.  The old flagpole was blown down in a windstorm in February, 2006.

Once the new pole was raised, the Cubs performed a flag ceremony, with a brand new American Flag, donated by FICRA.

 

 

 

Above: Pack 202's Cub Scouts hoist the new flagpole into place.

Right: Members of Den 7 performed the flag ceremony; Assistant Den Leader Brandon Stevenson, Den Leader Doug Nilsen, Blake Paffile, Walker Carlson, Blaize Stevenson, Dan Sheppard and Jonathan Nilsen.  Not pictured; Bobby Blaser.

Page Ollice - Nichols Center Deck
February 25, 2007 - Eagle Scout candidate Page Ollice of Boy Scout Troop 212 recently completed his Eagle Scout service project - a new deck for the Nichols Center.  Expanding on the old design, the new deck includes a 2' wider footprint, safer railings, and improved traffic flow from the main door to the stairs.


Page Ollice, his brother and Father Larry admire the completed work.


The new location of the staircase allows for easier traffic flow from the auditorium.

Garrett McKinney - Raised Walkways on Nature Trail
April 8, 2007 - Troop 212.  Garrett's project consisted of building several raised walkways over the wetland's marshes, protecting the area from the impacts of hikers traveling through the area.  The project was made especially difficult by the muddy conditions.


The walkways were prefabricated offsite, and installed on concrete pier blocks, to ensure resistance to rotting.

 

 

 

Garrett McKinney, standing on the newly completed walkway.

Ian Johnson - 'West Loop' of the Nature Center's Trail System

April 15, 2007 -
Ian's project completed the 'West Loop' of the Nature Center's trail system, allowing hikers to explore the westerly half of the 5-acre nature preserve. 

Volunteers from Troop 217 cleared new trails, placed log slab stepping stones, and installed plant identification markers along the route.

Highlights of the new trail include 'Stinging Nettle' meadow, (left) ancient nurse logs, and examples of the various plant species that grow on Fox Island.

 

 

Ian Johnson admires one recently completed  section of the 'Western Loop' trail, covering the undeveloped 
2 1/2 acres of the Nature Center.

Scouts Build New Bleachers For Nichols Center Ball Field
August, 2009 - Eagle Scout candidate Andrew Palmer of Troop #245 recently completed fundraising for his Eagle Scout project; new bleachers for the Nichols Center ball field. 

The bleachers were completed on August 8th, by Andrew and members of his Troop.  Constructed of pressure treated wood, and heavy grade bolts, the bleachers will provide sturdy seating for many generations of baseball fans.

Andrew Palmer of Gig Harbor's Troop #245 stands next to his finished Eagle Scout Project in August, 2009.

FICRA Gazebo & Deck get New Walkway
2010 - Eagle Scout Bryse Paffile of Gig Harbor's Troop 212 decided the Nichols Center deck had a problem with a muddy path, leading to the Gazebo. 

It is a popular spot, used by many to get in and out of the building during events.  When the ground is muddy, the mud seeps up through the grass, making a big mess, and mud gets tracked into the building.  Bryse decided to build a brick paver pathway and eliminate the problem.  The bricks will certainly take care of the mud problem from now on!

 

Fox Island Nature Center

Fox Island Nature Center & Wildlife Preserve
NEW Nature Center Trail Map!  Download your copy!

 

Watch our Wetlands Virtual Tour

An update on our projects at the Fox Island Nature Center Wetland Park.  Thirteen Eagle Scout projects have been completed at the Nature Center, since its opening in 2005.

2011:
Scouts build Footbridge
to span groundwater stream.

Sravan Konda completes the extension to the raised boardwalk linking the main trail loop to the Western Loop Trail.

2011:
Dallas Thornton added a brick pathway around the Native Species Garden, permanently incorporating the engraved bricks commemorating the donors who helped fund the purchase of the Nature Center Property in 2004.

2010:
Eagle Scouts Alex Ohlson, Jesse Long, and Grant Toepfer of Fox Island's Troop 27 have built three picnic areas in the undeveloped "Western Loop Trail" area.

Eagle Scouts Jensen Bond and Max Reetz  of Fox Island's Troop 27 have completed trail improvement projects.

2007:
Eagle Scout candidate Ryan Eason of Boy Scout Troop 212, has completed the Native Species Garden in the far left hand area of the diagram.

Eagle Scout candidate Garrett McKinney  of Boy Scout Troop 212, has built raised walkways across the marshy areas of the nature trail.

Ian Johnson of Boy Scout Troop 217 recently completed his trail-building project, which expanded the Nature Center's trail system, and installed plant identification markers along the trails.

Zach Briggs of Boy Scout Troop 282 completed construction of three picnic tables, and a picnic area.

The Cub Scouts have built and installed birdhouses in various areas of the park.

Click here to see more of the Girl Scout Garden

Girl Scout Troop 290, led by Leader Lise' Ohlson is recently completed a flower & shrub garden in the circular area at right.  They are working on a service project to help earn their Girl Scout Bronze Award.

Pam Britschgi created the garden design shown below.

Click for larger view

Our to-do list is growing shorter;

bullet

Complete construction of Kiosk Sign - John & Lise' O. Done!

bullet

Bird house installations - Cub Scouts Done!

bullet

Finalize landscape plan for trailhead area - Pam Britschgi Done!

bullet

Work Party to clear blackberries - Done!

bullet

Plant native species garden - Boy Scouts: Ryan Eason - Done!

bullet

Clean up storm debris and fallen trees from December 14th windstorm - Cub Scouts Pack 202 Done!

bullet

Build additional boardwalks over marshy areas - Boy Scouts: Garrett McKinney - Done!

bullet

Build new trails on western half of Nature Center & install plant identification markers - Ian Johnson - Done!

bullet

Build Picnic Tables around main entry area - Boy Scouts: Zach Briggs - Done!

bullet

Install roadside Nature Center sign - John O. & Boy Scouts: TBD

bullet

Install Donor bricks near trailhead area - John O.: Done!

Contact John Ohlson at 253-549-2701 for more information about these projects.

FICRA Purchases Wetland, Scouts Help Make it a Park

2004 marked the beginning of a new era in recreational opportunities for the Fox Island Community & Recreation Association (FICRA), with the acquisition of 5 acres of wetland and rainforest property now known as the Fox Island Nature Center and wildlife preserve. 2005 will see the grand opening of the new park, which opens this Saturday, in conjunction with the annual FICRA Fair.

This property was purchased with donations from Fox Island residents through a wildly successful fund raising drive following the 2004 FICRA Fair in August 2004. Over $40,000 was raised in just over 90 days, in one of the most successful fundraising efforts in recent Island history.

Volunteers helped clear overgrown trails and fallen trees to create the walking paths. Cub Scouts from Fox Island's Pack 202, Girl Scouts from Fox Island's Troop 290 and Boy Scouts from Gig Harbor Troops 282 and 212 also contributed significantly to the development of our new park, by volunteering for work parties and special community service projects.

Footbridge Project
Keith Buchanan (pictured above, and below right), an Eagle Scout candidate from Gig Harbor's Troop 282 took on the most challenging of the projects; building a 60' footbridge and viewing platform over the stream that runs through the property.

This project fulfilled his Eagle rank requirement to perform a project that benefited the community. After an arduous 3-month experience with the Pierce County Planning & Land Use department, which included a six week waiting period just to apply for the permits, the environmental review was completed, permits for the bridge were secured, and construction began on June 18th. Working conditions proved to be less than optimal; while digging in the muddy soil to place the concrete piers, the holes filled in with water as fast as they could bail them out.

Keith’s parents Bryan and Margaret Buchanan donated a third of the cost of the bridge, purchasing 143 bags of concrete and hardware for the bridge piers, which were hand-carried out to the work site by scout volunteers. A fundraising drive in July provided the funds to purchase the balance of the materials for the bridge, and the project was completed in time for the FICRA Fair on August 13th.

As an added incentive to boost the fundraising effort, Keith pledged to cut his long, red hair if he reached his fundraising goal of $2000. Donations exceeded $3000, and while Keith did get his hair cut, enough extra money was raised to pay for the park's informational kiosk, which will recognize those who have donated exceptional amounts of time and money to the park.

The Boy Scouts require Eagle candidates to complete their badge requirements prior to their 18th birthday. Although Keith started his project well in advance back in February, the delays in the permitting process caused the project to be completed with only three days to spare. He turned 18 on August 9th.

FICRA President and Eagle Scout John Ohlson served as Keith’s project advisor for the 6 month long project, providing planning assistance, carpentry expertise, and plenty of sweat equity in the bridge construction.

Many scout volunteers joined Keith in getting the bridge built.  Numerous work parties over the seven week construction period helped dig holes for the foundations, clear brush, haul concrete bags, drill holes and nail boards together.

The bridge was the final link that completed the nature trail loop, spanning the creek and crossing over several fallen trees.

On Saturday, August 6th, it all ended as it had begun; Keith and fellow scout Paul Sayre who broke ground back in June, put in the final 400 deck screws to attach the decking, to complete the project.

Park Bench Project
13 year old Eagle Scout candidate John Uehlin, (pictured below and at right with his father Cliff) from Troop 212 in Gig Harbor, headed up the second Eagle service project. He constructed and installed 10 park benches that are located alongside the trail at various points of interest through the wetland. The benches will bear the names of donors who contributed $500 towards the purchase of the wetland property last fall.

John pre-fabricated the benches in his garage using donated materials, and assembled them on site in assembly-line fashion.

The bridge and the benches are made of pressure treated lumber, Trex composite decking and legs of heavy concrete, to help them withstand the Northwest’s rainy winters.  The benches were built with 40 - 80# bags of concrete, 300 linear ft of decking, 680 deck screws, 93 board feet of treated lumber and 40-12 inch galvanized bolts.  Each bench weighs over 400 pounds.  All of the materials were donated by area businesses and other donors.

Teams of scout volunteers hauled the heavy concrete legs through the woods on garden carts and makeshift stretchers, often through tight turns and muddy trails.  

John's completion of his Eagle requirements at 13 years old is an unusual accomplishment. Most scouts use a bit more of their scouting career to earn their Eagle; most achieving Scouting's highest rank when they are 16 to 17 years old.

The Fox Island Garden Clubs have also pitched in to help shape our park. Plantings of natural plant species are planned to help landscape the main trailhead area. Bird houses and bat houses have been constructed from donated lumber, to be installed by Cub Scouts from Pack 202.

FICRA has supported the Scouting program in helping many other Fox Island Scouts attain their Eagle rank, by sponsoring their community service projects at the Nichols Center.

Cedar picnic tables from Matt Wiley, the Fire Pit by Matt Randle, and refurbishing our flagpole by Mark McKinney are just a few.

FICRA would like to extend a big THANK YOU to all the volunteers, donors, and FICRA members who came together as a community to make our Nature Center a reality, and preserve a pristine, natural part of Fox Island for generations to come.

A grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for the park was held during the FICRA Fair at Noon on Saturday, August 13, 2005.

Ryan Eason - Native Species Garden Project
February, 2007 - Eagle Scout candidate Ryan Eason of Boy Scout Troop 212 recently completed his Eagle Scout service project - a Native Species Garden, showcasing the various plants & trees that grow in the various climate zones of Washington State.


Above, Scouts Ryan Eason, Garrett McKinney and friend put the final touches on the garden

Left: Ryan and Eagle Scout John Uehlin begin the preparations for the garden project.

The garden features five distinct climate zones; Lowland Western Washington, Montane Forests, Sub-Alpine Forests, Alpine Forests, and the Ponderosa Forests of Eastern Washington.

Congratulations, Ryan on a job well done!

 

 

 

Ryan Eason, standing next to the completed Native Species Garden

Cub Scouts Help Clear Trails

On Saturday, March 3rd, Cub Scouts from Fox Island's Pack 202 spent the day cleaning up fallen trees, branches and other debris from the trails at the Fox Island Nature Center.

The December 14, 2006 windstorm toppled more than 20 trees at the Nature Center, including this big Hemlock tree, near the trailhead at 9th Avenue.

The Cub dads cut up fallen trees, and the boys helped roll the logs out of the trails.

 

 


Above: Spencer, Nicholas Nerli, Max Batanian, Alex Ohlson and Zach Batanian explore the roots of the fallen Hemlock tree.

Below: Nicholas Nerli, Zach Batanian, Alex Ohlson and Nicholas Prindiville roll a log off the trail.

Below: Alex Ohlson, Nicholas Nerli, Max & Zach Batanian clear a trail of fallen branches.

 

 

 

 

Thanks to all of our Cub Scout volunteers: Tim, Zach, Max & Lucas Batanian, Paul and Nicholas Nerli, Connor and Nina Spencer, Kurt and Nicholas Prindiville, Alex & John Ohlson, Dave Alberding, Bryan Perkins, and Nicole Perkins.

 

Garrett McKinney - Raised Walkways on Nature Trail
April 8, 2007 - Troop 212.  Garrett's Eagle project consisted of building several raised walkways over the wetland's marshes, protecting the area from the impacts of hikers traveling through the area.  The project was made especially difficult by the muddy conditions.


The walkways were prefabricated offsite, and installed on concrete pier blocks, to ensure resistance to rotting.

 

 

 

Garrett McKinney, standing on one of the newly completed walkways.

Ian Johnson - 'West Loop' of the Nature Center's Trail System

April 15, 2007 -
Ian's project completed the 'West Loop' of the Nature Center's trail system, allowing hikers to explore the westerly half of the 5-acre nature preserve. 

Volunteers from Troop 217 cleared new trails, placed log slab stepping stones, and installed plant identification markers along the route.

Highlights of the new trail include 'Stinging Nettle' meadow, (left) ancient nurse logs, and examples of the various plant species that grow on Fox Island.

 

 

Ian Johnson admires one recently completed  section of the 'Western Loop' trail, covering the undeveloped 
2 1/2 acres of the Nature Center.

 
Girl Scout Troop 290 Plants Nature Garden

Girls from Fox Island's Junior Girl Scout Troop 290 recently completed their Nature Garden as part of earning their Bronze Award. This award is the highest honor a Junior Girl Scout can earn.


The girls admire the completed garden.


Tess, Sarah Aliya, and Heather stand atop the pile of dirt to be spread over the garden area.

 

 

Parents and members of Troop 290 add the finishing touches to their Nature Garden, which include a small dry creek bed, rhododendrons, forsythias, violets, poppies, vinca, flowering almond, primroses, and other perennial flowers.

Thanks go to Purdy Topsoil for their donation of 7 yards of dirt; The Fox Island Garden Club for their $100.00 donation (used to purchase plants) and FICRA for their donation of leftover plants from the Annual Fox Island Plant Sale.

 

Some tired moms at the end of the day,

Scouts Build New Picnic Tables for Nature Center
Eagle Scout candidate Zach Briggs of Gig Harbor Boy Scout Troop 282, recently completed his community service project by building three new picnic tables and clearing out a new picnic area for the Fox Island Nature Center.

The tables were built from lumber left over from the footbridge project two years ago, and were just the perfect fit for Zach's project.

Built from heavy duty pressure treated lumber, they will last for years to come.

Work on the project included clearing invasive weeds and brush, leveling the picnic area, and spreading wood chips to help prevent weeds from returning.

Zach (back row, far right) joins his fellow scouts and dads in admiring the completed picnic tables.

 

FICRA would like to give a big Thank You to Zach and his fellow Scouts.

Fox Island Eagle Scouts Build new Picnic Areas for Nature Center

September, 2010
Eagle Scout Alex Ohlson of Fox Island's Troop 27 completed one of three picnic areas for the Fox Island Nature center as his Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project.

Using picnic tables brought home from the 2010 National Scout Jamboree, the boys created activity areas where dense tangles of invasive species once grew.

Alex was the first Scout from
Troop 27 (since its formation in 2007), to earn the Eagle Rank.


Volunteers work to clear blackberries.


"Cobra Camp" was the name given to his project, in honor of Troop 27's first Patrol.

 
Eagle Scout Jesse Long of Fox Island's Troop 27
built the "Cougar Camp" activity area, clearing out dense underbrush, blackberries and fallen logs, to form a shady picnic area framed by logs and natural features.

Jesse was the second Scout from Troop 27 to earn the Eagle Scout Rank.

September, 2010


Volunteers work to clear blackberries to make way for the picnic area.


Picnic Tables from the 2010 National Scout Jamboree were brought back home
to Fox Island and re-assembled at the Nature Center.

September, 2010

Eagle Scout Grant Toepfer of Fox Island's Troop 27, completed the third of three activity areas for the Fox Island Nature Center.

"Venture Camp" was created on a partial slope, with the area terraced off by using logs to create flat areas to sit and enjoy nature.

Grant was the third Scout from Troop 27 to earn the Eagle Scout Rank.


Picnic tables from the 2010 National Scout Jamboree were re-assembled at the site.


Hardy woodsmen plying their trade!

Trail Improvement Projects

November, 2010
Eagle Scout Jensen Bond of Fox Island's Troop 27 completed a staircase and raised walkway over a particularly muddy stretch of trail, that had become impassable due to the muddy conditions.

Jensen became the fourth Scout from Troop 27 to earn the Eagle Scout rank.

His project was further complicated by not one, but two fallen alder trees, one landing across the exact area where he had planned on building the staircase.


Had he started a month sooner, his staircase would have been smashed by the fallen tree.

December 2010
Eagle Scout Max Reetz of Fox Island's Troop 27 rebuilt a well-worn section of trail leading to the footbridge at the Nature Center. 

After years of blackberries training the path on various routes, Max created a wood chip surface with bender board edging that will keep the trail on track for many years to come.

Max is the fifth Scout from Troop 27 to earn the Eagle Scout Rank.




Wood chips were spread over weed blocker fabric, and bordered by synthetic bender board, to keep the trail well defined, and prevent weeds from growing in the path.

Brick Pathway Improves FICRA's
Native Species Garden

March 2011

Eagle Scout Dallas Thornton of Fox Island's Troop 27 wanted to give the Native Species garden a more formal look, and installed a brick path along the center of the raised garden area.

After four years of weed growth, the path in front of the garden had become overgrown with weeds and grass, covering up the engraved bricks that commemorated the names of the donors who helped purchase the Nature Center.

Dallas dug out all of the weeds and sod, and laid concrete pavers around the engraved bricks, making a formal, yet rustic path along the gardens.  Future Eagle Scout projects will complete the path along the full length of the raised garden area.  Dallas is the Sixth Eagle Scout for Troop 27.


Cutting the pavers to fit.

Before and after the path was installed

Raised Walkway Extension Eagle Project

December, 2011
Eagle Scout Candidate Sravan Konda of
Fox Island's Troop 27

The extension to the 2007 raised walkway project, added a new section to the Western Loop Trail entrance.


Volunteers lay the beams that will hold up the new walkway.


Sravan and his father, work to attach the final boards to the walkway.

Scouts Build Footbridge for FICRA's Nature Center

A companion project to the Raised Walkway Extension was recently completed on December 29th, by Scouts in Fox Island's Troop 27, where they built a 10' long footbridge over a groundwater stream. 

This bridge, made of pressure treated beams and Trex decking, resulted from re-routing the original trail that used to follow the streambed with stepping stones, and now crosses the stream.

Thanks to the Troop 27 Scouts, who put in a combined 35 hours in building the bridge, while working towards their next rank in Scouts.

 

Look for more Eagle Scout Projects on the Nature Center web page

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