By Danielle Coots
For the News-Current
BEAVERCREEK — To earn their silver award, Meaghan Evans and Emma Kieselhorst of Girl Scout Troop 30451 worked with Dave Suber of Beavercreek Parks to restore an old butterfly garden at Fox Run Park.
The silver award is the highest award a Girl Scout Cadette a middle school girl can earn.
“I really enjoyed restoring something and making it beautiful again,” Evans said. “We both enjoy nature and thought it would be nice to do something people of all ages could enjoy.”
Kieselhorst has been involved in the Girl Scouts for the past six years and Evans for the past five. They are close friends and wanted to earn the silver award together. Together, they contacted the parks department and made contact with Suber to see if there were any projects that they could undertake. He suggested the butterfly garden in the park, which is also in the neighborhood in which they live.
The silver award requires a commitment with a minimum of 50 volunteer hours per Girl Scout and the project requires a sustainable improvement to the community. The previous butterfly garden at Fox Run Park was overgrown and left unmaintained for years. An old wooded wall was covered in vines and the plants were entangled in weeds. The girls began the project on Aug. 10, 2015, beginning with pulling the vines from the wall, sanding, and painting it. They pulled weeds, planted new plants, built a small fence and continue to maintain it.
“Since we live in the same neighborhood, we would ride our bikes to the park,” Kieselhorst said. “Since the park doesn’t have a parking lot, it was difficult to transport the bags of mulch, plants, water and garden tools through the woods. Even though it was difficult, it was really nice to see the finished product.”
The girls will be presented with their silver awards in the spring during end of the year ceremony called the Green and Gold Banquet. It’s a ceremony for the Girl Scouts of all ages and all accomplishments.
“It was fun bouncing off ideas off each other,” Evans said. “We enjoyed working together.”
The butterfly garden was finished on July 12, 2016. The girls plan on adding plants and maintaining the butterfly garden until graduation from high school. At that time, they plan on passing the job onto the younger scouts.
Danielle Coots is a freelance writer for Greene County News.