Select Board Approves Keating's Bike Repair Station Project

JohnCarl McGrady •

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The Select Board has approved the installation of scout Quinn Keating’s Eagle Scout project, a bike repair station on Milestone Road, leaving him one short step away from attaining the highest rank in scouting.

“I have put a lot of thought into this,” Keating said. “It’s great to be this close.”

The bike repair station will include a map of Nantucket to help cyclists navigate the island and several tools such as wrenches, screwdrivers and an air pump, all secured by theft-proof wires. Keating began work on his project last October and has spent most of the year navigating various layers of local bureaucracy. Now, he is almost finished.

“It feels great,” Keating said. “It’s not just this year if you think about it. I’ve been in the scouting program since first grade. It’s all culminating to this moment.”

Keating thinks the bike repair station will help the community in several ways.

“Bike education would be pretty cool, getting more bikes out there instead of cars,” Keating said. “It lowers air pollution and increases fitness. I think this will be a great help to the community.”

He added that it will also be helpful for other scouts on the island pursuing the elusive rank of Eagle Scout, which no one on Nantucket has achieved for ten years. “It’s an opening, a gateway for more Eagle Scouts,” Keating said. “Getting Eagle Scout will open the gateway and make it seem like less of a daunting task for the other scouts in the troop.”

Keating is not the only local scout on the verge of becoming an Eagle Scout. Two others, Gabe Zinser and Jeremy Caspe, are also mere weeks away from achieving the rank, and both have completed their Eagle Scout projects.

Zinser built five bat houses for endangered Northern long-eared bats and donated them to the Nantucket Conservation Foundation. The bats have been facing increased mortality due to White-nose disease, but Zinser’s project may help alleviate that. The bats can use the houses, known as “rocket roosts” for their distinctive rocket-like shape, as safe summer homes to rear their young.

Caspe repainted a United States-themed mural at the Nantucket Elementary School, ensuring the mural, which has long been a staple of the elementary school, will be visible for years to come.

After Keating finishes the installation, he just has to go before the scout board of review, which will likely happen in September, before he officially earns the rank of Eagle Scout, finishing a long journey he says has changed his life for the better in many ways.

“It’s a great program, I’d recommend it to everyone, and I hope more people get into the program,” he said. “People think ‘oh, they teach you how to tie a knot,’ but it’s so much more than that...that’s why Eagle Scout is such a standout accolade on any sort of application, because the leadership, the commitment, eleven years of this is quite the commitment.”

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