Auburn Scout gets garden rolling

Eagle project will benefit residents
By: Bruce Warren Journal Staff Writer
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One Boy Scout and a couple of local design companies are making headway in creating the new community garden on a plot of land located behind Auburn’s City Hall. For Blake Willick, it’s more than a Scout project that will complete his final requirement to become an Eagle Scout with Troop 269. He said he wanted a meaningful project. “I wanted a project that was really going to last a long time,” Blake said. “Something that I could show my kids. I wanted something that would have a lasting impact.” The 16-year-old sophomore at Placer High School certainly has a vision for the future with this fundraising project, which is part of the Auburn School Park Preserve. City Manager Bob Richardson could not be happier with what Blake has done for this city project and what other non-profit groups have contributed. “Blake volunteered to get the plans together and find people who would do that,” Richardson said. “It appears that he’s finalizing the entire construction team now and the plans will go before the City Council in September. We would make the final approval of the project and construction will go forward. I think he’s done a beautiful job and I think it will be a project that he and the community can be very proud of.” According to Blake, there will be a circular-shaped structure similar to a gazebo in the middle of the garden. It will have lattice on top with a steel-beam construction below. There will be raised planter beds for disabled access, a compost area and even a potting shed to store garden supplies. Wood for the centerpiece will be purchased at Diamond Pacific lumber and supply company, Blake said. Blake has been working with Rob Littlepage & Associates, landscape contractors, as well as Michael Kent Murphy Architect, Inc. “They’ve made the plans for the project and we’re working on getting bids,” Willick said, during his lunch break Friday at Placer High. “Rob Littlepage spear headed the project for me and I really appreciate his help.” It helps to have Kevin Welch, his brother-in-law, in the construction business. Welch owns Capital Construction, and has helped determine the supply list. “I’ve gained guidance from my father (Nick) and Capital Construction,” Blake said. “Capital helped me build a call-out list for construction materials and has helped me to know to take what steps when.” The next step in the garden’s creation from design to fruition will be approval of the project in September. After that, the next phase will be landscape grading. “The grading should be done before Oct. 15,” Blake said.