By Katie Fallon

As a Boy Scout, Scott Sternstein knows he has to be prepared, but the scouting motto proved important when tackling a required service project to attain his Eagle Scout ranking.

Sternstein, 17, is a junior at the Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School and a member of Boy Scout Troop 406 based out of the school’s parish church in Sandy Springs.

Sternstein knew he had to complete a special service project as part of the Eagle Scout requirements. According to the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), the Eagle Scout leadership service project “must demonstrate leadership of others and provide service to a worthy institution other than the Boy Scouts.”

Leadership projects can help religious institutions, schools or communities, but may not benefit a business or individual and cannot be routine labor like cutting grass or picking up trash.

As a lifelong Sandy Springs resident, Sternstein was familiar with Heritage Sandy Springs and decided to make the historic site his focus.

“I have lived in Sandy springs my entire life and have always been involved in the community,” Sternstein said. “I attended the first Sandy Springs Festival and have been a volunteer with my Boy Scout troop every year since then.”

The project Sternstein compled in February included two elements. The first phase included constructing a trellis that defines the entrance to the historic site off Sandy Springs Place. During phase two, Sternstein created steps connecting the site’s parking lot to the adjacent green space used for additional parking during activities like the Sandy Springs Festival.

“When I was looking to complete my Eagle Scout project, I knew that this would be an ideal place to contribute,” Sternstein said. “It is nice to know my project will be enjoyed for many years to come.”

Aided by Heritage member and architect Joe Bond, the teen used pressure-treated wood and galvanized hardware to help the eight-foot trellis withstand the elements. While he spent five days working at the historic site with the help from both fellow scouts and Holy Innocents’ classmates, Sternstein said the project included many days of planning and purchasing.

Heritage Sandy Springs executive director Carol Thompson said the teenager’s project was a welcome addition to the historic site. “His meticulous planning and attention to detail have given us a beautiful new entry into the park. Our master gardeners are designing complementary plantings for the arbor.”