For my Eagle Project I decided to renovate the Nokesville Welcome Sign. While driving to one of my weekly Boy Scout Troop meetings in January 2015, I looked over at the Nokesville Welcome Sign, at the corner of Fitzwater Drive and Nokesville Road. I said to my father “I don’t think the sign represents Nokesville as well as it could”. After a few weeks of conversations with my Scoutmaster and other troop leaders, I decided renovating the sign would be my Eagle Project. I feel like a member of the Nokesville community. All of my time in Boy Scouts has been at Troop 671, right here in Nokesville.
However, I wanted to know more about Nokesville and not just fix the sign, so I did some research about Nokesville to really understand the community. During my research I discovered that Nokesville became a town in 1865, and was the location of a religious movement called the German Baptist Brethren, which later became the Church of the Brethren. This was especially interesting to me because the sponsor organization for Boy Scout Troop 671 is the Nokesville Church of the Brethren.
I learned the sign and the land it is on are owned by “Friends Uniting Nokesville” (F.U.N.). The F.U.N. organization is dedicated to uniting Nokesville community members, civic organizations, and businesses. I approached F.U.N. and proposed my project. They were immediately excited about the idea and approved it quickly.
The Nokesville Welcome Sign was originally built about 15 years ago by Mr. Scott Lewczak, owner of SignFarm. Over the years, weather, overgrown and unkempt plants, and pests had caused the sign to ”lose its appeal”. I called Mr. Lewczak to ask if he would be willing to help me renovate the sign. He said my timing was great! He had driven by the sign a few days earlier and had decided that he needed to address the sign’s issues.
To make sure the project was a success, I spent about 7 months planning the project, talking with community members, businesses, and organizations. In my plan I wanted to do more than just fix and update the sign with a new fencing material and a new color. I wanted to improve the overall look and landscaping. That included removing a large tree that had begun to overshadow the sign, improving the landscaping with a clean look using a retaining wall and gravel, and providing a bench for people to use.
After developing the plan, I listed the materials needed, estimated the amounts of the materials, and created a budget for the project. Then I focused on raising the money to pay for the project. I received monetary support from many Nokesville businesses and organizations, individual community members, and family and friends. I also received generous material donations and discounts from Lowes, SignFarm, The Stone Center, and Home Depot. It was incredible how much everyone supported the idea and wanted to help. It was really amazing.
With the extraordinary involvement of many of the Troop 671 scouts, leaders, parents, and friends, the renovation was completed on August 29. Being a member of the Nokesville Community is important to me and I wanted a way to show it. I appreciate everyone who donated their time, talents, and funds to support my project. I really hope everyone enjoys the results and continues to take pride in Nokesville. Yours in Scouting,
Carter Hancock, Eagle Scout