By Wendy TATEISHI
Patrick Venezia, an Eagle Scout in Troop 319 and a senior at Crescenta Valley High School, is the Verdugo Hills Council-BSA choice for the 2020 Glenn A. and Melinda W. Adams Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year Award, presented by the National Eagle Scout Association. The award recognizes valuable service of an exceptional nature by an Eagle Scout through completion of an Eagle Scout project.
Over six weekends last July and August, Venezia and his team cleared 812 feet of brush at the upper section of Dunsmore Canyon Trail in Deukmejian Wilderness Park. His goal was to clear a six-foot wide path, suitable for two hikers to pass easily. It was especially challenging as some areas of the trail width were as narrow as a foot.
For his contribution to fire mitigation and recreational safety, Venezia’s project was selected by Verdugo Hills Council to be considered for the Scouts BSA Western region award. The regional award also grants $500 for future educational purposes or to attend a national or international Scouting event or facility. At the national level, the prize increases to $2,500. Verdugo Hills Council will also receive funding at each level should Venezia’s project advance.
“Patrick’s Eagle Scout project served his community by increasing access to the Dunsmore Canyon Trail for those who want to safely enjoy it as well as providing better access for first responders. Additionally, increasing this trail space could very well serve as a fire-break, said Paul McKenna, president of VHC’s branch of the National Eagle Scout Association. “The Verdugo Hills Council is proud to acknowledge his efforts and the efforts of his family and City of Glendale volunteer Bob ‘Bobcat’ Thompson, who were part of this project.”
Eagle Scout projects carried out in Los Angeles County must be implemented following guidelines of the Los Angeles County Dept. of Public Health – COVID-19. Assistance on Venezia’s project was restricted to family members from the same household, with the City of Glendale requirement of a city volunteer. The group worked observing guidelines of social distancing and masking.
Venezia joined Cub Scout Pack 304 in September 2010, and earned his Arrow of Light in March 2015 before immediately joining Troop 319. He has traveled to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico for a 56-mile, 12-day trek with Troop 319, as well as trips to Zion and Bryce Canyon, and Mt. Baldy from Mt. Baldy Village. Venezia advanced to the rank of Eagle Scout at the age of 16 on Sept. 24, 2020 with two Eagle Palms. He is considering several career options, including in actuarial science.