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Eagle Scout builds garden to feed community


Boy Scout Aidan Walley is on his way to achieving the rank of Eagle Scout. His project that beautified the Community Presbyterian Church in Merrick will help benefit the larger community.

Walley, 16, a scout in Troop 225, regularly attends Boy Scout meetings and events hosted at the church. He even recalled racing homemade model cars there when he was a Cub Scout seven years prior.

The church’s garden, he recounted, always had more of a potential, though. For years they grew tomatoes and supplied them to a local food pantry, put poor soil held them back from yielding more crops.

As it came time for his Eagle Scout project, Walley decided he would build planter boxes with fresh top soil and mulch for the church to grow more plants. On May 22, he and a team of fellow scouts gathered at the church to start construction.

“Everyone there is super nice,” Walley said of the clergy and staff. “They let us have meetings there. They really deserve it.”

By the end of the day, the church was home to six 10-foot garden boxes, in which Walley and his team planted more
tomatoes, red peppers, squash and more. The crops will be donated to the food pantry at the Freeport Presbyterian Church.

Pat’s Farms in Merrick donated the vegetables, and more donations from My Hero Deli, Bagel Man and Lowe’s helped bring the project to fruition. Walley also held a car wash fundraiser on May 1 at Advanced Auto Parts.

“It’s all about heart and soul,” said Dave Walley, Troop 225 scout master and Walley’s father. The team planted roughly 120 plants, he added.

“It just feels good to get something done for the community and for other people,” Walley said. “It’s all worth it.”