East grad notches first-ever local scouting achievement

A recent graduate from Columbus East High School has achieved a unique accomplishment in local scouting.

Zoe Barnsfather is the third young woman in Bartholomew County to earn the rank of Eagle Scout and the first to be an Eagle Scout and also earn a Bronze Palm, which requires five more merit badges than the 21 required for Eagle Scouts.

According to Scouts BSA Troop 1557 Scoutmaster Virginia Moats, Barnsfather also has received the Girl Scouts Gold Award, the most prestigious award that Girl Scout seniors can earn.

Barnsfather is a founding member of Scouts BSA (formerly Boy Scouts) Troop 1557 as well as a member of Venturing Crew 2557, chartered by First Lutheran Church in Columbus.

Barnsfather’s awards required the completion of service projects. For her Eagle Scout project, she made 100 homeless care kits. They each had toiletries (toothpaste/brush, comb, nail clippers, etc.), socks, wet wipes, and a free meal coupon to local restaurants. These were donated to Brighter Days housing for distribution.

Her Gold Award project was planting a pollination garden complete with landscaping, pollen and nectar plants, hummingbird feeders, bee hibernation spots, and a bee hotel on the grounds of the Miller House. That area will be used as an outdoor lab in the future for children in our community.

Barnsfather has served as senior patrol leader of Troop 1557 and president of the Venturing Crew. She is an Ordeal member of the Order of the Arrow, BSA’s camping honor society. She graduated eighth in East’s Class of 2022, was active in concert and marching bands and was a member of multiple extracurricular groups and academic honors organizations. She also works part time in the circulation department at the Bartholomew County Library.