Long has ambitious Eagle Scout projectPublished 9:14pm Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Dustin Long loved playing on the playground equipment at his local church.
Over the years, that equipment became old and unusable and Hope United Methodist Church no longer had a playground for its youth.
So Long, a member of Edwardsburg Boy Scout Troop 593, needed to come up with an idea for an Eagle Scout project, it seemed only natural that he would build a playground.
That might sound simple enough, but when other projects tend to be limited to building a path through a local wooded area for people to walk on or putting up a fence, Long’s plan calls for just a bit more effort.
The playground he wants to build at Hope United Methodist is going to cost about $15,000. That seems like a large project and it is. Now throw in the fact that Long has to complete the project by his 18th birthday, it turns it into a monumental project.
“I wanted to do something for my church that was something more than just build a path,” Long said. “I wanted to do something that would be beneficial to everyone for quite a while.”
Long admitted that many felt when he proposed the project that he was “shooting too high. They were very shocked when I told them it would be $15,000,” he said.
Long has already presented his project to the members of Hope United Methodist and plans another presentation for those who were not able to see the first one.
He has also made a presentation to area businesses and even at the annual Chamber Dinner for the Edwardsburg Chamber of Commerce.
In the past few weeks, he has increased his donations from $500 or $600 to $2,280.
He is also looking at possibly securing some grants for the project.
“If the grants do not pan out, I probably won’t be able to finish it. I don’t have a lot of other options right now,” Long said.
Donations can be made by sending a check, marked “playground” to Hope United Methodist Church, 69941 Elkhart Rd., Edwardsburg, MI 49112. Long can be reached at 663-8133.