La Mesa fire station gets a new look from local Boy Scout

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La Mesa Fire Station 12 received a landscaping makeover from one of neighbors, Austin Badger, 16, Life Scout and junior at Grossmont High School. After a long scouting career, beginning as a Tiger Scout in kindergarten, Badger is in his final steps of his goal to earn the rank of Eagle Scout. Over the weekend, with the help of his comrades from Troop 324 of La Mesa, family and friends and local businesses, Badger transformed the front of Fire Station 12 from overgrown water heavy plants to a rock garden full of drought resistant plants.

La Mesa Fire Station 12 received a landscaping makeover from one of neighbors, Austin Badger, 16, Life Scout and junior at Grossmont High School. After a long scouting career, beginning as a Tiger Scout in kindergarten, Badger is in his final steps of his goal to earn the rank of Eagle Scout. Over the weekend, with the help of his comrades from Troop 324 of La Mesa, family and friends and local businesses, Badger transformed the front of Fire Station 12 from overgrown water heavy plants to a rock garden full of drought resistant plants.

Badger said he chose the fire station because it is close to home and he wanted to make an impact in his own neighborhood.

“It’s going to look nice and it’s educational being right across the street from the school,” said Badger. “Students will come by here, see this and understand that it is fireproof and drought resistant. It’s right by my house and I want it to have an influence on the kids that come by here. It’s something I will remember, I will see it every day and think, ‘I did that. That was me.’”

Daniel Holub, assistant scoutmaster, said this is one of the necessary requirements in order to earn Eagle Scout. He said this project involved converting their landscape out in from to a zero-scape landscape that is a drip irrigation that is more conducive to the natural surrounding desert landscape. It will save the City of La Mesa some on their water bill and be an attractive feature, he said.

“It’s a big step for Austin, kind of the home stretch,” Holub said. “When they get to the project that is a big hurdle for them. Now it is just a matter of wrapping up any merit badge or leadership requirements they might have.”
Holub said Badger did a tremendous job and one of his most involved scouts.

“Austin is the project manager for this, he had to come up with the idea, make the contacts and the project requirements is that it has to have lasting permanence,” said Holub. “It’s very moving to see all the effort that is put into it.”

Fire Captain Eric Danell said he was pleased to see a young man in the community see a need and want to contribute to the community.

“He is putting a lot of work and time and I think it is going to really improve the front of the property here,” said Danell. “I think we are very fortunate to have a young man that chose to do a project like that here.”
Badger said he could not have completed the project without the help of his troop, family and local companies.

He said his father, a professional landscaper contributed much of the plants from his own personal nursery, Bedrock Boulders & Landscape, Lakeside Land and Dan Martin Trucking donated materials and labor.
“I want to thank everyone that came out here to help me,” said Badger. “It means a lot to me that they support my scouting career and me becoming an Eagle Scout.”

Austin Badger’s mother, Julie Badger said it has been a long road since kindergarten and is excited seeing her son taking these last steps to Eagle Scout. “This is kind of like seeing the end of the journey,” she said. “He’s become a remarkable young man to take on this project, want to help his community and I can’t be more proud.”

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