MARILYN HAGERTY: Eagle Scout projects brighten corners where they areTyler Wicken went to Memorial Park South Cemetery one day to visit the grave of his grandfather, Melvin Wagner. And he got to thinking how nice it would be to have a bench nearby.
By: Marilyn Hagerty, Grand Forks Herald
Tyler Wicken went to Memorial Park South Cemetery one day to visit the grave of his grandfather, Melvin Wagner. And he got to thinking how nice it would be to have a bench nearby.
He wanted to sit and ponder the good times he had with his grandfather.
And that was the spark he needed to get started on his Eagle Scout project of getting benches set up throughout the cemetery. This week, Tyler celebrated the fulfillment of his project and received his Eagle Scout status. In a brief ceremony Tuesday evening, he thanked his parents and friends who helped him secure the benches he put together for the cemetery.
Gerry Bass, pastor of Wesley Methodist Church, said many people who have lost loved ones will come and use these benches. There in the quietness, they may commune with God. And he said that is what made Tyler’s project so special.
Tyler is 17 and a senior at Grand Forks Red River High School. He’s hoping to continue on as a Scout until he is 21 in a Venture Crew.
His older brother, Grant, also earned the Eagle Scout stature.
Their parents are Greg and Tracy Wicken.
Tyler is just one of a select group of youth who have stuck with it and become Eagle Scouts. Their projects are varied, but they all add up to a better community.
Cliff Cushman’s class
The class of 1956 at Grand Forks Central High School was pretty athletic. But when about 80 of them gather here this weekend, the plan is to just sit around Canad Inn and chat.
This is the class that won a state track championship with Cliff Cushman as a team member. Cushman went on to the Olympics and Cushman Field here is named in his honor.
The Class of 1956 had members of the 1955-56 state champion basketball team. They won the eastern division football crown. Hockey was new to the school and was under the leadership of Serge Gambucci.
The musical, “The Red Mill,” was directed by Dwight Sherwood. The Latin Club was under the leadership of Shirley Gilbert.
All in all, it was a good year, says Margaret Fish. She is one of the organizers for the reunion weekend that starts today and continues through Saturday.
There were 230 in the class. Those were in the years St. James High School was up and running and Red River High School was yet to open.
Cars, volleyball, salsa
The weekend arrives with high school sports ramping up. ... While the cars are still racing Friday nights at RiverCities Speedway. ... And many people are people getting in one last Labor Day weekend at area lakes. ... North Dakota Classic Volleyball Tournament is scheduled here today and Saturday, and the Sioux women will be playing in their UND Classic tonight and Saturday in the Betty. ... Volunteers getting ready to rebuild Sherlock Park in East Grand Forks Sept. 19 to 24. ... East Grand Forks students will have pizza, chips and salsa with tossed salad, fruit and vegetables on the first day of school Tuesday. ... The Saturday Farmers Market is getting bigger and better each week in the Town Square downtown.
Q. Will there be any surprises at the reunion of Central’s class of 1956 this weekend?
A. Yes, but don’t tell anyone. The surprise singer will be Judd McKinnon.
Q. Were soap box derbies ever held in Grand Forks?
A. Oh yes. They have been a regular event in the past and part of the Boy Scout program.
Laura, Jackie, Roger
Cheerful people of the week: Laura Jelinek, Jackie McElroy, Roger Melvold.
Reach Hagerty at firstname.lastname@example.org or (701) 772-1055.