Girl Scout awarded gold for researching Exeter’s old buildings

Posted May 18, 2009, at 3:03 p.m.
Last modified March 20, 2011, at 6:38 a.m.

Girl Scouts of Maine announced that Kristin Dillon has earned the Girl Scout Gold Award for researching and documenting historic buildings in her hometown of Exeter. The highest award in Girl Scouting requires 65 hours of planning, implementing and evaluating a community service project.

“The most interesting thing about my Gold Award project was discovering how much incredible history our little town of Exeter has,” said Dillon. “There were many villages with their own schools, churches and mills, all within the same town. Exeter even had an opera house and a famous fairground.”

Dillon found that many of the older buildings had been torn down. Her project goal was to identify and document the remaining buildings. She worked with the Exeter Historical Society, looked through town records and interviewed area homeowners.

Dillon created a display board with photos and identified locations of many of the 63 buildings that she found were more than 100 years old. She worked with American Nameplate in Brewer to create plaques that feature each building’s circa date to mount on houses, barns, a church, a school and a store. She took photos of each building for an album for the town.

“Doing this project has given me an appreciation of my community and the folks who came before me,” said Dillon. “I’m so grateful for the support I received and want to thank Deanna Wetzler, my project adviser; the Exeter Historical Society for their generous donation to help offset the cost of the plaques; Peter Wintle, former town manager; native Lewis Leavitt, for his wealth of information; Douglas Pike, for lending me “Big House, Little House, Back House, Barn”; the late Stewart Bean, for his previous research; all the homeowners for their cooperation; and my troop adviser and encourager – my mom, Genie Dillon.”

Dillon is the daughter of Paul and Genie Dillon. She is a junior and an honor student at Bangor Christian School. She participates in varsity tennis, basketball, soccer and cross country, and plays the harp with the University of Maine Orchestra.

Dillon is in her 12th year of Girl Scouts and enjoys working with younger Scouts, volunteering at Manna and greeting soldiers landing at Bangor International Airport. She has traveled to Georgia to visit the home of Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of Girl Scouts; and to London to participate at Pax Lodge, an international Girl Scout-Guide Center.

Dillon received her Girl Scout Gold Award on April 11 at Cornerstone Baptist Church. Her brothers, both Eagle Scouts, assisted by playing bagpipes for her entrance and reading her Scouting profile.

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