Justin Schowengerdt and Matthew Haselhorst of Troop 162 received their Eagle Scout Awards during a ceremony at the Knights of Columbus Hall on Jan. 29. Troop 162 is chartered by the Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish.
Schowengerdt and Haselhorst, both seniors at Dodge City High School, set the goal of becoming an Eagle Scout early in their scouting careers. Only about 5 percent of all Boy Scouts earn the rank of Eagle Scout which alone is noteworthy, but can be an important distinction later in life.
Both of these Eagles tallied 50 camping nights with the troop. Schowengerdt’s favorite camping outings include high adventure trips to Lake in the Clouds, Colorado, and Dave’s Pond in Ford County. Haselhorst’s most memorable outings include Paloduro Canyon and a scuba diving venture in the Florida Keys.
Of the merit badges the two earned, each has a favorite.
"My favorite was Wilderness Survival that I earned at Spanish Peaks in Colorado," said Schowengerdt. "I enjoyed the experience of having to make a shelter in the wild with minimal supplies and spend the night on the side of a mountain."
"My favorite merit badge was Scuba Diving," said Haselhorst. "I have asthma and the thought of not being able to breathe while being 40 feet underwater terrified me. I overcame that fear and had an awesome time swimming over and under coral reefs and swimming to ship wrecks."
Schowengerdt’s Eagle Scout Service project was to renovate a garden area adjacent to Halsey Hall for the veterans living at Fort Dodge. This included removing volunteer trees and overgrowth, replacing the top soil and creating yard art sculptures of stone.
Haselhorst’s Eagle project was to create a video/recording to promote a greater awareness of the services at the Manna House homeless shelter and food pantry.
Schowengerdt’s extracurricular activities at high school include playing football, basketball and baseball and being in the Outdoor Club. Haselhorst was on the tennis team for two years and is a member of the drum line for The Pride of Southwest Kansas, the DCHS marching band.