In seeking out a neighborhood improvement project to attain Eagle Scout status, Ian Peterson didn’t have to search far from his Appling home.
A rundown park near the Columbia County school board’s former Appling headquarters needed some attention, Peterson said.
“The idea came to me from (Boy Scout pack leader) Ed Manders,” said the Greenbrier High School senior. “He mentioned to me about the park. ... I took a look at it and decided it needed to be redone.”
Peterson, 17, replaced five picnic tables, repaired swing sets and replaced landscape timbers bordering many of the parks picnic tables and trees.
The Columbia County school board gave him permission in October to take on the project, which allowed Peterson to seek donations for the needed materials.
With completion of the project, Peterson can earn Eagle Scout status.
Reaching Eagle Scout allows Peterson to follow in the footsteps of his father and brother, both of whom are Eagle Scouts.
But becoming an Eagle Scout is not something Peterson said he aspired to as a child.
“In the beginning, he (his father Walt Peterson) kind of made me be in it and I grew to like it,” he said.
“My Dad was born in Nebraska, and it was really big in the town where he grew up.”
In addition to becoming an Eagle Scout like his brother, Eric, Peterson said he also might follow him to Georgia Southern University. There, he might study mechanical engineering.
“Or I might decide to stay here and become an auto mechanic,” he said. “I know I want to do something like that, and I know I want to stay around here.”