By Judy Reed
Charley Nelson, 16, the son of Charles and Ginger Nelson of Courtland Township, made a lasting contribution to the Cedar Springs White Pine Staging area last weekend when he and his family and friends built a gazebo for the community to use.
Charley, a sophomore at Cedar Springs High School, built the gazebo as an Eagle Scout project.
According to his mom, Ginger, Charley has been with Troop #222, which is sponsored by Cedar Springs Rotary, for three years. When it came time to pick a project as part of the process to achieve Eagle Scout status, former boy scout leader and CS Rotarian Tom Noreen gave Charley some ideas of things that could be done, and when he met with City Manager Chris Burns, she gave Charley several options, one of which was the gazebo. “He really likes to build things,” said Ginger.
About 16 people helped with the gazebo throughout the day on Saturday, December 4. Work started about 9 a.m. and ended at about 8 p.m.
Burns couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome. “The City was thrilled to partner with the Scouts, specifically Eagle Scout candidate Charley Nelson, for the construction of the pavilion at the staging area,” remarked Burns. “Charley and his crew did a phenomenal job in less-than-ideal weather conditions. Thank you to all those who volunteered last Saturday to make this project a reality!”
Charley had his scoutmaster review Tuesday evening, and now has to go to a boy scout council board of review. If they approve it, Charley will get his Eagle Scout rank.
Burns said that a dedication of the gazebo will take place sometime in mid-January, and it will honor Gary Gust’s mother, Clara Gust. The Gust family donated the land for the staging area, with the understanding that some type of pavilion would be built to honor Clara.