Michael Connolly of Boy Scout Troops 485 (Skowhegan) and 428 (Pittsfield) has completed his Eagle Scout Project. For his project, Connolly established a wheelchair accessible fishing location at Lake George Regional Park. The path to the fishing platform dock was built up to ADA accessibility guidelines.

Connolly began his project back in May 2019. Along the way he encountered many obstacles related to zoning, regulations and permitting because his project is established on the water and at a public location.

He met every challenge along the way with the assistance of many kind and skilled people. Mike Davis, detailer at Cianbro, helped with the blueprints and re-design blueprints. Steve St. Pierre of Hammond Lumber in Skowhegan helped him problem solve the design changes and materials; and Joe Poulin and Brian Beaulieu helped him with providing for engineer review and approval.

Just when Connolly thought he was in the clear, the pandemic hit. Needless to say fundraising became almost impossible. He dug in and became more determined than ever.

According to the release, he resorted to appealing to area businesses for monetary donations and materials knowing that they were also likely experiencing difficulties. Skowhegan Savings Bank interviewed him and gave him a matching grant up to $2,000. Hammond Lumber, Cianbro and Kleinschmidt pledged sizable donations. Connolly also conducted two car washes with the assistance of his Troops. Mattingly of Mattingly Products Co. in North Anson also interviewed him and then donated all the necessary gravel and grounds materials. Alpine Consulting and Metal Works, Home Depot in Waterville, Canaan Superette, Maine Fire Equipment Co of Skowhegan, Advanced Auto Parts in Skowhegan and Hunter Insurance of RI helped make it all happen this fall.

On Saturday, Nov. 7, the project was complete and Connolly was able to present it to Justin Spencer who is the park resource manager. Unfortunately, given the delays because of the pandemic, the dock will need to be winterized soon.

Connolly is planning a grand re-opening event in the spring. He hopes people tell their family and friends who would benefit from the dock that it will be available for their fishing enjoyment.

Connolly, son of Shelley Connolly, is a freshman at Nokomis High School.