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Barber shop back after COVID setback

Leighton Brown, owner of Master Barbers in the Panther Valley Mini Mall in Lansford, is back.

His business took a real hit during the pandemic, forcing him to close for a good seven months, he said.

People weren’t getting their haircut as often as they once did, Brown said. Many professionals were working from home, and there were no funerals, weddings or special occasions to bring people in, he said.

Brown, a New York transplant who has called Lansford home for some 16 years, took a state job at a correctional facility near Philadelphia - teaching others the trade.

The two-hour commute was tough, leaving very little time each day for his family, Brown said, and he still tried to maintain regular clients’ cuts.

Brown, who apprenticed in New York where he also had a shop, wanted to go back to being a full-time barber in his own shop.

“It’s the only thing I’ve done all my life,” he said, sitting in the waiting area inside his small shop, which got a renovation for his return.

Refreshments were set up in the hallway and balloons hung inside and outside the two-chair barber shop in the West Ridge Street business district as Brown welcomed back customers Friday.

Brown celebrated his grand opening in 2014 - and now, nine years later, he is celebrating his rebuilding, rebranding and renovation re-opening.

The shop is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday to Friday, and by appointment only on Saturday, he said. The phone number is 484-292-4247.

Leighton Brown welcomed customers back to his shop, Master Barbers, in the Panther Valley Mini Mall on West Ridge Street in Lansford last Friday. KELLY MONITZ SOCHA/TIMES NEWS