Ben Zenker


Work that involves growing or acting as a leader.


From Eagle Project

Step outside the north entrance of Donlin Drive Elementary in Liverpool, NY and you will find a nature trail. It is a scenic route full of plant life and a great place for teachers to take their students for a quick outdoor activity. Unfortunately, in 2010, the trail had degraded from its original form so much that it was reduced to a dirt path containing many large ruts (caused by ATVs) and was the culprit of creating muddy shoes to all who walked its path.

My eagle project involved the renovation of this trail. We started by cutting back brush and invasive plant life that was making it difficult to maneuver through the trail. We cleared the drain pipes near the entrances of the trail and surrounded them with stones to help prevent future clogs. During mid-August of 2011, I led around 35 volunteers in the heavy lifting part of the project. We spent the day covering the trail with dirt (to fill in ruts and level off the trail), followed by 4 inches of wood-chips. At the end of the day, we installed one metal post at each entrance to prevent future motorized vehicle deterioration of the trail.

We also installed several cement trail markers with wooden plaques that were placed in the ground to identify nearby plant life. To complement the trail markers, I created a worksheet that discussed each specific plant in-depth, along with an accompanying illustration.

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