Thomas Woodhead, owner of Woodhead Inc., 1914 Mosteller Road in Montoursville, said he is following in his father's footsteps in the excavating business.
"When I got out of high school, I just kind of started along," Woodhead said. "I always enjoyed doing residential work - driveways and that sort of thing."
Woodhead's enjoyment of working in the excavating field stems from his adolescent years.
Woodhead, Inc. workers Dave Aikey and Dan Whitmoyer build a driveway in Hidden Valley Estates in Loyalsock Township.
A pond that was completed last summer at a residence in Gamble Township takes shape.
"When I was 13, I just loved the equipment and loved being out here doing it," he said. "I always figured if I wasn't going to do this, I would go into the Air Force, or something dealing with machinery."
His father began the business in 1983 as a subcontractor with Pennsylvania Gas and Water after working for George Logue for about 25 years.
"He didn't enjoy working out of town," Woodhead said, adding that the opportunity came up for his father to start up his own business.
Woodhead said that his father's operation started in the gas-laying business, which segued into more residential work over time, working in excavating for basements, driveways and laying water lines.
"Until about the year 2000, my father worked and then I took over the business in 2001," Woodhead said.
Woodhead, Inc. serves mostly Lycoming County, though Woodhead said that the company does get down into the Lewisburg and Lock Haven areas.
Woodhead added that the coverage area for his company typically serves those within about an hour's drive.
The company handles a lot of residential work, Woodhead said, and follows commercial jobs.
"The biggest thing is we work with builders and general contractors," he said. "We like to work with the homeowners and give them what they want.
"We do driveways, septic systems, excavating and land clearing. We specialize in the dirt," Woodhead said, laughing.
The company caters to homeowners, though, Woodhead added, by doing mostly residential work.
"That's where most of our work has been," he said. "(But) we've done a few commercial sites and developments in the past."
Working in the construction field, weather is obviously the ultimate dictator that determines what jobs can be done. Woodhead said that he tries his best to schedule the work around the weather the best they can.
"If the weather gets bad," Woodhead said, "we just have to back off and give it some time."
Particular in the winter, many of the jobs can be difficult to schedule, which is why Woodhead said that summer time is the easiest time to work.
"If it gets dry and dusty you can still keep working," he said. "It might be hard on you, but you can still keep working."
Before starting a job, Woodhead said that more than anything, access points are the number one thing to look for. Knowing where everything is at and knowing what the safety issues are are important, he added.
One of the biggest projects the company recently completed was a soccer field in Hepburn Township.
"An trailer park got washed away in the '96 flood," he said. "The township owns (the land), but a soccer group kind of leased it, and we cleaned it up and leveled it."
Customer service is what drives the company and its staff, Woodhead said.
"It all centers around the customers and give the homeowners what they want," he said. "We like working with them and knowing what they want, or better than what they want."