Ready for liftoff Cub Scouts to ride in replica Space Shuttle float for parade |

Ready for liftoff Cub Scouts to ride in replica Space Shuttle float for parade

Andrew Pridgen
Appeal Staff Writer
BRAD HORN/Nevada Appeal Frank Rogers works on a space shuttle float for a cub scout pack for the Nevada Day Parade at Complete Millworks in Carson City on Wednesday.

The original space shuttle (Columbia) took NASA scientists nine years from design to launch and the program in the two decades that followed has cost taxpayers more than $145 billion (approximately $1.3 billion per launch).

The version of the shuttle built for the Carson Cub Scout Pack 341 to be featured on their Nevada float this Saturday was a slightly smaller endeavor.

Nonetheless, the 10-foot replica of the shuttle, which can hold up to six scouts, did “take some doing,” said volunteer builder Frank Rogers of Dayton.

Rogers, who calls himself a builder/artist, works at Complete Millwork of Carson City and said he’s usually the one to head up special projects like the replica space shuttle.

“Yep, we like to help the (scouts) out and these pretty much come my way,” he said. “Whenever I hear them say ‘we got somethin’ for you to build’ – I know it’s going to be a good one.”

Complete Millwork, which builds furniture installations for high-end restaurants, bars and casinos throughout the West – Bellagio, Cheesecake Factory, Southpark Resort – has lent its services to the local Cub Scouts for the Nevada Day parade before, but nothing on the scale of the shuttle, said scoutmaster Dan Bowler.

“It’s like a $30,000 donation on this project,” Bowler said. “It’s such a big story – the type of story this city needs. It’s just great to see a business in town helping kids.

“It’s really a special, special gift.”

Indeed, Complete Millworks staff took a rough sketch from Cub Scout Pack 341 and created a life-like replica out of plywood.

The construction took Rogers about 10 hours and Jack Eshenaur, an engineer for the Carson-based fabricators said he put in an additional six hours getting the design from rough sketch to blue print.

Eshenaur said the shuttle project was “a nice break from the monotony” of designing steakhouses and slot machine bays.

“Oh yeah, you get to be a little creative,” he said. “Plus, it’s for something good. I really enjoy doing this.”

Scoutmaster Bowler said he’s not sure what the plan is for the professionally designed, built and painted spacecraft, but said the Children’s Museum of Northern Nevada may be a likely permanent home.

“The sky’s the limit,” he said.

• Contact reporter Andrew Pridgen at or 881-1219.