This summer didn't go according to plan for many local families with teenagers who were looking forward to working jobs not far from home, such as DelGrosso's Amusement Park and local pools. Some teens found alternatives, while others elected not to work for the summer as they weren't able to find other opportunities.
With DelGrosso's Amusement Park in Tipton closing, and the Bellwood-Antis Community Pool following suit, families were left to consider other options. The Tyrone Community Pool opened on July 1 after a decision by Borough Council on June 8, leaving those workers to miss out on about a month of employment.
Delgrosso's Park typically employs up to 700 people a season, many of whom are local teenagers and young adults. The park made the difficult decision in May to remain closed because of the restrictions and guidelines in place due to the spread of the coronavirus, and prospective employees - some as young as 14 - were left looking for another option or being unable to earn a paycheck this summer.
Jessica Chronister, a 2020 senior from Tyrone, was a ride operator at the park last year. She was disappointed to be unable to return this summer, saying she loved it. Instead, she is working at Plato's Closet in State College.
Chronister started her position about a month ago, working 25 to 30 hours a week. "The drive there doesn't bother me," she said. "It gives me a little bit of extra money to spend to do things and hang out with my friends."
DelGrosso's would have been a closer commute, and Chronister said she would definitely go back next year, provided the park opens for the 2021 summer season.
Although she was not originally planning to work at either the park nor the pool, Tyrone Area High School junior Becca White was happy to start a job at the Village Pantry in Tyrone for the summer.
"She had applied in January of February," her mother, Julie White, clarified. "She finally started in June."
White added that she knows of a family with three teenagers who lost the chance to work - two were looking forward to beginning at Delgrossow's, while the other lost a summer internship.
While places like the Tyrone Community Pool and Camp Kanestake were able to give jobs to a few local teens, others who drive or have transportation went to Altoona and outside areas to work, grateful to find open positions as businesses all around have been affected by the coronavirus outbreak.
Though it has been a disappointing season for teens who expected to work, they hold out hope for a better summer next year.