Local News and Stories

Eagle Scout project helps improve access to Shrine cabin

By Nolin Ainsworth

A soon-to-be Eagle Scout led a large work party this summer to improve the accessibility and appearance of the Hermitage Cabin, the smallest of five public rental cabins at the National Shrine of St. Therese in Juneau.

Led by 16-year-old Bennett Rivest, a parishioner and altar server at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church, over two dozen volunteers added stairs, a picnic table patio and a fresh paint job to the rustic, one-bedroom cabin. Rivest is a member of Troop 6, housed at Chapel by the Lake.

“This is going to be used by all kinds of people,” Joe Sehnert, the shrine’s executive director, said. “People love that cabin, that’s one of the best cabins around in terms of (being) primitive. People like it because there’s no electricity, no plumbing.”

Rivest clocked a total of 70 hours on the project, between July 2-11, and raised over $1,000 of donations from local parishes. The lumber used in the project was recycled from a “rip-out project downtown,” Sehnert said.

“(Bennett’s) mom and I, we dragged it down there on forklifts and (Bennett) divided all that wood up,” Sehnert said.
The cabin received new windows and front porch last summer.