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Scout adds flowers to FInk Park

Photo by Jessica Sly Joey Pate finishes drilling into the second layer of the frame for his flower bed project on Thursday.1 / 2
Joey Pate beams as he sits on the frame of the completed flower bed.2 / 2

Joey Pate secured a wooden frame to an identical base with a drill as he worked Thursday to complete a flower bed for FInk Park in Wadena.

Required to have a minimum of 100 hours of service to become an Eagle Scout, the idea for a flower bed in Fenk Park was pitched to Pate by Ron Bucholz, the city's public works director. Pate, 14, agreed and began work on the flower bed in the middle of May. The Harold Peterson Foundation donated $750 for the project, and the city of Wadena provided black dirt and landscape fabric.

Pate has been a Boy Scout for three years and joined because he wanted to and because his mother, Ann Pate, was the den leader when he was in Cub Scouts. As a Boy Scout, Pate only needs five more merit badges before he can become an Eagle Scout. After completing the flower bed, he will be another step closer to his goal.

"It's pretty much the highest honor in [rank]," Pate said.

When Pate began in the middle of May, he first compared prices for supplies. Pate obtained green and brown wood with pole barn nails to hold it together from Northwest Lumber and green wood and brackets from Ace Hardware.

"We spent about four hours comparing the prices of wood," Pate said.

At Pete's Nursery, Pate discussed with Mike Pete the types of shrubs and flowers he would recommend using. Pate decided that he would use Marigolds, Lantana flowers and a Blue Birch tree. The flower bed will serve as a decoration for the park and city of Wadena. The perimeter of the bed will be 36 feet with the wooden border being four layers tall.

With the flowers, bushes and tree planted, Pate expects that he will finish the project on July 1. It is fun to see how many people notice the flower bed, Pate said. On the finish date, Pate and others who assisted with the project will announce it as completed. However, Pate will not continue to maintain it afterwards.

"After I'm done with this, it goes to the city," Pate said.

Pate received help on the project from some of his friends: Zach Norenberg, Harlan Reece, Josh Lund, Drew Larson and Keith Paulson. The adults who assisted with the flower bed were Len Kalakian, Craig Reece, Ron Bucholz, Mike Pete, Ann Pate and Dr. John Pate. Sam Waln Sr. and Mike Cartell delivered materials.