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Going Gaga for Eagle Scout Project
Jun 11, 2019 | 218 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Jacob Halter of Pittsgrove Township, stands in front of the gaga pit he built as an Eagle Scout project at Camp Merrywood.
Jacob Halter of Pittsgrove Township, stands in front of the gaga pit he built as an Eagle Scout project at Camp Merrywood.
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PITTSGROVE TWP. — When Eagle Scout Jacob Halter set out to do a project to benefit the community, he thought on a big scale: 35 feet wide, the equivalent of a new “mega gaga pit.”

Thanks to Halter’s efforts, the 64-year-old Camp Merrywood day camp of the Cumberland Cape Atlantic YMCA is home to such an attraction.

“I wanted to do something meaningful for my Eagle Scout service project,” said Halter, an 18-year-old senior at Schalick High School.

The new pit features 16 sides, each 7 feet long, made of pressure treated landscape timbers that are reinforced and capped. The gaga pit will be used in playing a variety of games, especially any in which a ball can bounce off the walls.

Halter knows the YMCA well through his years as a member. His father, too, has kept fit at the Landis Avenue facility over many years. Jacob worked with his father and friends, especially Seth Brodzik, to complete the project in three months.

The new gaga pit will be part of the new Teen Island at Camp Merrywood.

“Words can’t describe how much we appreciate Jacob’s efforts.” noted Theresa McKay-Booth, senior director, Child Development. “Teen Island is an area of more challenging activities for our older campers. They will love this new gaga pit.” She continued, “Jacob was a very responsible, independent worker on this project. We are very grateful for this addition to Camp Merrywood.”

“It was easy to work with the Y staff. Everyone was very helpful,” Halter added. “I know the YMCA is important in our community. Camp Merrywood is also important for kids who don’t usually get to experience the outdoors and nature.”

Halter himself recently learned to swim at the Y’s indoor Kontes Pool.

“I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it,” he explained.

He already holds black belts in Tae-Kwon-Do and HaiDong Gumbo. Next year, he will begin studying mechanical engineering at Rowan University in Glassboro.
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