Adam Jones wants to refurbish the historic caboose in Escalon’s Main Street Park – and he is hoping to utilize the project as his stepping stone to the rank of Eagle Scout.
The teen, who will be a senior at Escalon High in August, has proposed the work as his Eagle Scout service project and it will include painting and restoring the caboose, including sanding and paining inside and out, replacing damaged flooring and more.
Jones is seeking donations to help purchase materials and the goal is to get the project started by late July or early August, with the completion date set prior to his return to school.
“I have talked to the Escalon Historical Society and gotten all the okay’s from them,” Jones said of doing the work on behalf of the society, which owns the caboose.
A member of Boy Scout Troop 117 out of Oakdale, Jones is working on the project with his dad, Chad, and will also bring in other troop members to assist with the work, another requirement of the Eagle project. Mom Rebecca is also supportive and helping with the process.
A certain number of manhours must be dedicated to the work and it must be a project that benefits the community to qualify for consideration as an Eagle project. With the caboose being a centerpiece of the downtown park – and a popular tourist attraction – Jones said choosing that for his project was easy.
“I’ll be restoring the caboose by repainting it, fixing the plywood underneath it, where the bottom carriage has rusted out, the stairs will be painted, and I will also make it easier for people to access the caboose,” he said.
Right now, the focus is on gathering all the materials he will need for the project, added Jones.
“I’m looking for donations, both of materials and money,” he explained. “Paintbrushes, paint rollers, those are mainly the paint supplies I need the most.”
Plywood will also be needed and Jones said donors can contact him through his dad at 209-604-0707 or send checks to Jones at 30588 Hall Road, Escalon, CA 95320.
“I have a savings account with my name on it, Adam Chad Jones, I would put them (donations) in that account, those funds are set aside for the Eagle project,” he said.
He also wants to put in a plaque with an engraving of a short history of cabooses and how and where the Main Street Park caboose was acquired. Jones has proposed adding a concrete sidewalk at the caboose entrances for easier access along with replacing the railroad ties around the edges of the caboose.
Several local businesses are being contacted by Jones for supplies and donations as well, and he is working on a total estimated cost of $4,000 for the project.
The Eagle Scout project is something he has had in the planning stages for over a year, and Jones said he has been involved in scouting since he was 8, starting with the Cub Scouts.
Jones said helping refurbish the historical caboose will also improve the ‘welcome’ motorists receive on Main Street as they enter town.
“It will make Escalon look better,” he said.