Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Labor Day

On snowy days, we do a thing at WNEP called "Travels with APAL."  A photographer and I just wander around a designated area, and we do a story with whoever we see.  We never fail to find something unusual, something different, people coping with the snow and cold.

We did an Independence Day edition Monday.  On Newswatch 16 This Morning, it was a preview of the Scrantastic Spectacular.  The thing didn't get rolling until 4 PM, long after I was off duty.  Set up didn't start until the tail end of my shift, so photographer Jeff and I set out on a warm weather "Travels with APAL."

Our hook would be people who work hard to make sure you have a nice Independence Day.  This year was strange.  Independence Day fell on a Tuesday, so Monday was a semi holiday for a lot of people.  So many took the day off, but the rest of us worked.

We visited workers grinding down St. Ann's Street in Scranton so it could get a coat of fresh pavement.  It was then on to a fireworks tent, where the worker was just coming off an all night shift.  We caught the early risers at a roadside produce stand, and the owner of a beer store.

What did we learn?  People really love their corn on Independence Day and the beer to wash it down.  Sitting along a busy highway and selling produce doesn't seem like a fun job to me, but the young people at the stand made the best of it, and they didn't do it alone.

As for the beer store, sales started picking up at the beginning of the weekend and they stayed strong throughout the holiday.  Beer store visits are always an adventure.  I can't believe all the brands and varieties out there.  When I was growing up, it was Genessee, Budweiser, Miller and Pabst.  That's it.  That's the list.

The fireworks tent was perhaps the most unusal stop on our journey.  It's tough to a secure a tent, so someone has to stay there all night to keep an eye on the place.  They either sleep in their car or in the tent.  The variety amazed me, and so did the prices.  The stuff isn't cheap, but deals were available.  Most tents were cutting prices and throwing in some freebies.

The bottom line is the holiday, any holiday, isn't for everyone.  Some people work twice as hard while you get the day off, and I'm glad they're around.