NORTH CANTON The next time you are sitting at a bench in Price Park take a look at the base of the bench. Chances are you will notice flagstone, pavers and a more beautified sitting area.
Seth Brown earned his Eagle Scout rank by shoring up the bases of the benches and built an additional bench in Price Park for his project.
"I was looking for a project to do," said Seth Brown, who is a senior at North Canton Hoover High School, who plans on attending Case Western Reserve University to study biomedical engineering. "I went into the North Canton Civic Center and asked Brian Hill if there were any projects that needed done. This was one of the projects. I had to follow BSA (Boy Scouts of America) standards."
The city of North Canton had a project to secure the benches in Price Park by adding flagstone and putting pavers around the benches.
"The concept of adding flagstone is to prevent puddles from being created under the benches," said Brown, the son of Mike and Amy Brown. He has one sibling, Sean. "To complete the project, I needed to get 4x4 studs, sand, limestone and pavers to create a nice solid foundation, like an outdoor patio. Overall, I had to buy three 4x4, eight-foot long studs. The studs were put in the ground, then I put the pavers in the ground with sand and limestone."
Boy Scouts typically have to raise the money for their projects.
"I was fortunate," said Brown, who was a member of the Hoover swim team, a former member of the chess team, the Quidditch Club and is a member of the Breakfast Club (swim team members). "This is a project the city wanted done, so the city paid for materials. I provided the manpower and designs."
Brown started the project in July of 2017 and finished the project in early August.
"I worked on the project every weekend for three or four weekends," said Brown, who was a three-time state qualifier in the medley relay (finished ninth this year) and 400 freestyle relay (finished sixth this year). "The project was a little stressful because this was a project the city wanted. So I felt a little more pressure. After the project was finished, I went over to the Civic Center. The city came out and inspected the work and said the work was as good as they could have done."
Brown’s work crew included Derek McKinney, Kate Lochridge, James Nixon, David Nixon and Sean.
"This project included a lot of responsibility and planning," said Brown, who wanted to thank his Scout Master Jim Strauch for all he has done and for making his troop good. "I had to go into places and ask people for help. That is really the first time I have had to ask for help. Schools do not really teach kids how to ask for help. This was kind of nerve racking to ask for help because I am not an expert in this field. But the guys listened to me throughout the project."
Brown joined the Boy Scouts in first grade. He said his dad got him started in the organization and was his den leader. But his father never earned his Eagle Scout rank.
"I wanted to one up my dad," said Brown, who added that Nixon is the only other person remaining from his troop once it began. "The Boy Scouts teach life skills. It teaches morals. At Scout camp, you learn how to act. This is a good influence for young kids and teaches you to do the right thing.
"I would definitely recommend the Boy Scouts to boys. Scouting is definitely a positive. Scout’s teaches you to be a leader. I would push my kids to be an Eagle Scout. I might not be a den leader, but I will push my kids to be a Boy Scout."