Three youth achieve Boy Scouts' highest rank of Eagle Scout [West Laurel]

Laurel Leader

West Laurel Boy Scout, Brandon Brown, who attends Our Lady of Good Counsel, along with fellow Scouts Stephen Isabell and Walter Rouse of Troop 1444 have achieved Boy Scout's highest rank of Eagle Scout. As we know from other neighborhood boys who have done this, it's no small achievement. These three young men bonded as Cub Scouts and pledged to earn their Eagle Scout together. And so it was. On June 11, the Scouts were feted at an official Boy Scouts of America Court of Honor ceremony at the troop's host church, Transfiguration Episcopal Church.

The high school students who were sophomores at that time worked and planned together their Eagle Scout project. Brandon helped preserve the environment and wildlife by building three barn owl boxes across WSSC's Watershed. The barn owl has been losing its habitat and its numbers have been greatly reduced in this region. Increasing shelter for the barn owls can increase the owl population and the owl presence reduces the need to use pesticides that kill a number of animals and pollute the water we drink. The barn owl also helps farmers and homeowners use less pesticides for killing destructive rats as the barn owl is a natural predator.

Stephen built garden salad tables at the Smith Educational Center in Rockville with the goal of enhancing the Montgomery County curriculum and to teach second-grade students the importance of growing your own fruits and vegetables organically.

Walter centered on a social issue impacting students both internationally and locally. He provided much-needed backpacks and school supplies to underprivileged students at a school in Africa as well as in Montgomery County. All three young men have held various leadership positions in the Scouts such as assistant senior patrol leader, historian and den chief along with earning numerous merit badges. Only 4 percent of Boy Scouts are granted the rank of Eagle Scout after a lengthy review process. Congratulations Brandon, Steven and Walter!

West Laurel friends, you must take a drive or a stroll down Main Street in Old Town. There have been so many wonderful new (and old) places to visit for good food, yummy dessertsand I plan on telling you about each place I visit over the coming months. I'm a frequent flier at Olive on Main, a West Laurel family-owned restaurant, especially with its new outside deck to enjoy a cool drink, good companyand lots of great food choices. The juicy cheese-stuffed hamburgers are my favorite. I also happened upon a great place called Sip on C Street that is tucked away behind the infamous Laurel Meat Market. I was looking for a place to hold a baby shower that was not too big and not too small. I found it at Sip on C Street. I was enjoying the company of a friend that I met there to have coffee and bagel . Wow, the coffee was delicious. Most of the breakfast and lunch choices are made from scratch and baked there. It also offers "spirits" of beer and wine. Owner Joe Valentino was gracious and very helpful with accommodations for my event. Sip is a wonderful addition to the many new experiences now available on and off Main Street.

Families who have children who will be attending Bond Mill Elementary School in September and are new to the community, please be sure to register your children in kindergarten through fifth grade as soon as possible. If you have a child that turns 5 years old by Sept. 1, then you should register for kindergarten immediately. Enrollment is ongoing. Call the Bond Mill office at 301-497-3600 for more information or stop by the school (closed during the summer months on Fridays) at 16001 Sherwood Ave.

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