Matt Amendola is a model Boy Scout. He's been awarded 34 merit badges and he's a role model to his three younger brothers, each of whom is now a Boy Scout with Troop 270 of Durham.
On Thursday, the 16-year-old will take another step toward reaching the pinnacle of scouting - Eagle Scout.
The senior patrol leader is hosting a Fried Dough Dinner at the United Churches of Durham, the troop's charter organization, to raise money for his Eagle Scout Project.
"I'm gonna be building a barbecue pit down by the pavilion. It's for the church. They always need money for a mission trip they do. They go down to Kentucky every summer," explains the senior-to-be at Vinal Tech. "They can rent it out or have suppers down there."
The fundraiser is from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Amemdola hopes to raise $2,000 for the project (other fundraisers are tentatively planned) and plans to start building the barbecue pit as early as late August.
"We're hoping to put a roof on it too," he says, while holding a blueprint of the project.
Amendola's project is the third Eagle Scout Project at the church in recent years. Two previous projects include the construction of the pavilion and the tables and benches under it.
"I never really thought I'd make it to where I am. Growing up most of my friends dropped out of [scouts]," says Amendola, who credits his father with keeping him involved in scouts.
Amendola is also involved with the church, where he volunteers with other scouts during the collection of offerings, coffee hour and bean suppers.
"I'm proud of him," says Dawn Amendola about her son. "I think he's great."
You can support Matt's Eagle Scout project by visiting the United Churches of Durham on Thursday, July 14, between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.
For $5 you will receive fried dough (multiple toppings available) and a water. For $6 you will receive fried dough, choice of drink and dessert.