BRIAR CREEK, Pa. — While the sun is shining, you can count on Ber-Vaughn Pool near Berwick being crowded, even if thunderstorms are not too far off.
"You get to have a nice, fun time. You get to see a lot of people, you get to meet new friends, and it's a nice day to cool down," said 11-year-old Anthony Andrews from Berwick.
Ber-Vaughn Pool is different from most in the area. It was vacant for years before it reopened in the summer of 2016 as a nonprofit and completely revitalized. While many other pools are struggling or closing altogether, Ber-Vaughn continues to have a successful season each summer.
"They're not getting lifeguards, they're not getting staff, they're not getting the financial means to take care of it, and a lot of it is because they are municipal-owned. Municipal-owned pools are hard to keep open. We're very fortunate to have become a nonprofit, and we're very fortunate the borough gave us the pool to start with," said pool director Joshua Kishbaugh.
The pool near Berwick has 35 employees, most of them are returning from years past.
"I really do believe a lot of them would work for us for free if we asked them to. We have a great group of staff, great group of concessions, lifeguards, front desk staff. They all get along well," Kishbaugh said.
And the staff says, like the families who come to the pool, the team of employees is just as diverse, which is helpful in keeping the Spanish-speaking kids safe.
"As a kid and as an immigrant, I moved here from Columbia. I'm able to help people that haven't been able to learn English like I have and let them have a good time while still being safe," said lifeguard Sam Segura-Suarez.
Ber Vaughn Pool is open every day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., weather permitting.