December 12, 2012 - Good things happen when folks work together. A perfect example can be found in Addison where scouts, volunteers, local companies and government officials combined their efforts and resources to improve a public recreation facility by adding a parking lot.
"This stuff doesn't just drop out of the sky," said township Supervisor Bruce Pearson. "There's well-intended people who show up in the rain and the snow to put these things in so people can enjoy them."
Watershed Preserve Park now has driveway leading to a gravel-topped parking lot that measures 50 feet by 60 feet. "It can hold about six to eight cars," Pearson said.
The lot is located at the park's west entrance off Haven Road. It will allow park visitors to access a refurbished 1940s cabin, complete with wood-burning stove, located right by Loon Lake and its fishing dock.
Prior to the installation of the driveway and parking lot, visitors had to park on the road and walk in, which was neither safe nor convenient for them.
Fortunately, that's a thing of the past thanks to the efforts to Life Scout Sam Pack, Boy Scout Troop 297, Parks Committee Chairman Joe Schnur, his wife Pat Schnur, his son Joe Schnur, George Newbegin and Rod Blaysck and Scott Cope, all of whom contributed in one way or another to clear the rugged terrain of trees, stumps, brush, roots and rocks, then make it level.
Schnur was impressed with all the time, effort and ingenuity that Pack, an Addison resident who's pursuing the rank of Eagle Scout, put into making this project a reality by organizing and coordinating things.
"One thing I've got to give that young man a lot of credit for, he never quit," he said. "He was going to do it regardless of what it took."
"This is what the park needed," said Pack, who's a sophomore at Romeo High School. "They were ready to develop it, they just needed the organization and labor to be done, so I helped them with that and pulled it together."
Once the area was prepared, Pearson contacted Oxford Township Supervisor Bill Dunn about securing some gravel to coat the lot.
"I don't have all the answers, but I certainly know where to find them," Pearson said.
Dunn arranged for Pearson to receive all of his gravel from American Aggregates, an Oxford subsidiary of the Edward C. Levy Co. Addison received 140 tons of 21-AA crushed stone for $5 per ton as opposed to the normal price of $10. "Within minutes, he had my gravel for me," Pearson said. "When you have cooperation between townships, a lot of things can happen."
Consisting of 100 percent crushed stone, 21-AA (a designation that refers to the size of the stones), is a high quality material, far superior to standard road gravel.
Dunn also arranged for TKMS Trucking to haul all the crushed stone to the site for $2.50 per ton. "The dispatcher lady from TKMS couldn't have been nicer to me," Pearson noted. "The truck driver, a young guy, spent the whole day working with me."
Pearson used his own tractor to spread the stone. In the end, the whole project was completed for around $1,400.
"If I had to pay somebody to put that parking lot and driveway in, it probably would have cost me about $12,000," Pearson noted.
CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.