When hikers, bikers, and kayakers visit the newly opened trails at the site of the future Mayo River State Park in Henry County, they will be greeted at the trailhead by a picturesque scene—a fenced walkway to the main trail, a wooden bench surrounded by wildflowers, and a kiosk showcasing a map of the three trails currently available to explore.
The kiosk was the service project of Eagle Scout Joseph Fincher, son of Martinsville Deputy Police Chief Robert Fincher, who serves as Scout Master for his son’s troop
Joseph said he learned of the project through a friend of his father who is a park ranger at Fairy Stone State Park.
“Originally, we were thinking of doing something at Fairy Stone, but then we saw in the news about the new state park they were going to be building, I was really interested because I live in Henry County (his troop is based in Ridgeway) and I love the area.”
When the ranger mentioned the idea of a kiosk, “I thought it was a perfect idea. Everything just sort of fell into place,” he said.
The kiosk is 13-feet tall, with 3-feet sunk into the ground to hold the structure firmly in place.
Fincher estimated 20 different people worked on the project with him, totaling more than 130 manpower hours.
Before getting materials for the project (which were donated or offered at a discount by Lester Building Supply), Fincher said he spent 3- or 4-months working on the idea.
“It’s a large process, getting signatures from different companies and from the Boy Scouts, plan approval, and all that. Once that was completed, I did some fundraising, and once I actually had the materials, it was just a matter of people getting together, mostly from my troop,” to build the kiosk.
That process took about a month, he estimated.
According to the Boy Scouts of American website, “Service to other people is what Scouting is all about. In many ways, your service project reflects who you are as a youth leader. Your result should be of significant impact in your community to be special, and should represent your very best effort.”
“It’s great,” Fincher said of having his work on the site of a future state park. “Having a state park here in Henry County, the land is beautiful. I’ll definitely be hiking out here with my troop and it feels good to be a part of that process.”