Kyle Armstrong and his parents
A 16-year-old Eagle Scout candidate from St. Charles Church Boy Scout Troop 211 is going to fix a tripping hazard outside the lifeguards' entrance to the Dempsey Holder Safety Center. The Imperial Beach City Council unanimously approved the repair at its December 5 meeting.
Boy Scout Kyle Armstrong proposed the project as part of the requirements to earn his Eagle Scout ranking. The west-side entrance of the beachfront lifeguard station (named for Tijuana Sloughs surfing legend Allen "Dempsey" Holder) has a concrete walkway that's edged by a small strip where grass should be.
"We do have a problem there — it's high traffic so it becomes thatchy and uneven," said Imperial Beach lifeguard captain Robert Stabenow. "We need to have it safe for lifeguards, who come through in a hurry when there's an emergency, and for the public; most of the people who come in that way are coming for help, like, limping with a jellyfish sting."
Armstrong's plan involves a compacted sand and gravel base, topped with interlocking pavers — a job he estimates will take one or two days once he has his plan approved.
The city and the lifeguards declared there's no money for the repair work. Before he voted his approval, city councilman Bobby Patton said he remembered the problem area, too.
"I know it's a tripping hazard," Patton said. "When it rains, it's a lumpy, ankle-twisting mess."