Amphitheater planned for Dover’s Akridge Scout Reservation

DOVER — Akridge Scout Reservation in Dover is getting a new addition — an open air amphitheater.

The amphitheater, which will accommodate up to 2,000 people, is the first phase of part two of the camp’s 10-year construction plan.

Construction is scheduled to start Jan. 25 and is expected to be completed in the spring. The amphitheater will have covered seating for 350 people and include outside seating for about 700 and additional seating on the grass, bringing capacity to about 2,000.

Akridge Scout Reservation is at 1910 Baden Powell Way, off New Burton Road.

“Although it’s new, it’s been part of the plan since the beginning,” said Ray Teat, director of support services for the Del-Mar-Va Council of the Boy Scouts of America.

After a successful bid, Delmarva Veteran Builders was hired for the job. Delmarva Builders is the region’s only commercial construction firm dedicated to bringing employment to U.S. Armed Forces.

“We have 18 full-time workers and they’re from all four branches. We have some active duty, reserves and veterans,” said Chris Eccleston, president of Delmarva Veteran Builders.

Mr. Teat came to know Mr. Eccleston from a previous Boy Scout project where Mr. Eccleston served as project manager.

“He was an Eagle Scout, so he understands the Boy Scouts and what we’re about and we always try to work with and support veterans when we get the chance, so this is going to be a good partnership,” Mr. Teat said.

Mr. Eccleston isn’t the only member of the construction team that has Scout experience. He said many of the builders have been through the Scouts, so they understand the significance of the program, not only as a kid but in daily life.

All the seating will surround a covered stage that will be positioned lakeside, allowing the lake to serve as a backdrop for all performances.

“It’s a place where we’ll be able to have campfires, performances not only for the Boy Scouts, but we’ll have times when it’s open to the public too,” Mr. Teat said.

Kent County Parks and Recreation was planning to build a similar structure at its new recreation center, but since the Scout Reservation sits just behind the rec center, the Scouts and county are working as partners in the project.

The space also is set to serve as a chapel and will be used year-round.

Other projects to be completed in part two of the 10-year construction plan include a ranger facility, an office and camp facility with bunks, a pool and dining hall.

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