HERMITAGE, Pa. (WKBN) – If you’re under the age of sixty and have lived in this area a while, you’ve probably heard of Kranyak’s “Christmas Tree Lane” in Hermitage. But with the pandemic forcing many people into a “new normal,’ managers had to find a different way to keep the tradition alive.
“We sat down and realized that there are certain things we can’t control, but let’s go forth and the things we can control, let’s do the best we can at it,” said General Manager Dan Zippie.
This season, photographs with Santa are being taken in Kranyak’s Garden Center on North Kerrwood, about 1,000 feet behind the main store on East State Street.
Photographer Mike Sanko and his staff have been taking the Santa photos at Kraynak’s for more than three decades. He admits his own business suffered when the pandemic forced Kranyak’s to shut down its “Easter Bunny Lane” last spring. Now, to meet the necessary safety guidelines, a bench was added with protective plexiglass as well as markings on the floor to keep everyone socially distanced.
“With the amount of people that we’ve seen in all the years, we’ve had to come up with something that was safe and feasible,” Sanko said. “After every person that we photograph, we wipe down the bench, have to wipe down the glass, so we’re taking all the precautions we can.”
Many of those same precautions are being taken inside the main store, keeping customers and staff safe as the holiday season builds towards Christmas.
“We need something positive. We need something for the families to do,” Zippie said.
Christmas Tree Lane will be open through the end of the year.
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