Torii Gate at the Gardens at Lake Merritt

On a Saturday morning in late November I went to a Piedmont Community Service Crew event by Lake Merritt. There I was met by Crew Advisor Ken and another member of the crew Miles Lee. For three hours we pulled weeds and learned how to move heavy objects. I learned a lot about using various construction tools and pieces of equipment I had never even heard of before the event. In the end, I felt like the event was worthwhile and fun. Entry by Julliette Lucas, Nov 25, ’12

In the nearby garden, we saw that one of the stone lanterns had been donated by Miles’ family.

In addition to the mundane but necessary garden weeding, one of the tasks that the crew helped to do was to move 2 huge decorative boulders from the delivery truck across the ground and to set them into holes that we dug just to cradle the boulders.  A huge tripod constructed by thick timbers with chains and a chain hoist hung from the apex was set up to raise up the boulders off the delivery truck.  A section of roller conveyor was used like a train car to move the boulder along wooden planks toward the target holes.  Entry by Ken Li

for more info about the Torii Gate, visit

About the author: Ken Li

I founded the Piedmont Community Service Crew in 2004 as a way to merge the best parts of Piedmont Council BSA's 100+ year legacy of Scouting for our boys with the lesser-known BSA Venturing program and thus better serve the girls in our community.


  1. Jerry MIller says:

    Great effort, Crew! Looks like fun was had by all. Today, the Gardens at Lake Merritt posted its own story of your contribution on the front page of its website:

    Thank you so much for helping with the Torii Garden, a symbol of Oakland’s fifty-year sister-city relationship with Fukuoka, Japan. For more on that relationship, see

  2. Peter Bowyer says:

    That day was lots of fun. And there are more adventures in garden building, planting and pruning to come. Thanks to everyone who came!

Leave a Comment