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by Sydney Garofolo

Samantha Palumbo, owner and creator of the newly opened Dart Zone in Dunmore was inspired by her four boys who love playing Nerf gun wars in the backyard.

Palumbo grew up in Dunmore and currently resides in Scranton. With the love and support of her husband and children, she jumped right in when deciding to open her own business. She always wanted to work for herself, but never acted on the thought until now. After observing the market, she decided to open Dart Zone because she noticed this area is lacking activities for children ages 7-18.

“That is how Dart Zone, Inc. came to life,” she said.

Dart Zone is a Nerf battle arena where children of any age “can come in and blast their friends with the foam darts.”

“Think of laser tag but using Nerf Blasters instead of laser guns,” the owner explained.

The business has special promotions and events running weekly. A Nerf gun league is currently in the works. The business also hosts birthday parties and private events.

Palumbo believes in giving back to the community since the community did so much in helping her open her business. She and her family do so by working with the local schools and setting up fundraisers for organizations.

Dart Zone held its official grand opening on Oct. 13. There were still some obstacles Palumbo and her family had to face while opening up shop, however. They had issues with the location, building and unexpected work of the facility. They also faced the issue of not having the right material and many unexpected trips to the store were required to make sure everything would be completed on time. There were a lot of surprises and hardships along the way, specifically in the area of advertising.

Palumbo and her family were able to conquer these obstacles, however, and are open and ready for business.

Samantha has many plans for the future, and the opening of Dart Zone, Inc. in Dunmore is only the beginning. She hopes to open Dart Zones around Pennsylvania, and eventually expand around the country.

Palumbo has two pieces of advice for anyone opening a business:

“The first would be to never give up,” she said. “Even when it seems like that light at the end of the tunnel is so far away, just keep going toward it. It will get closer and you will finally reach it. Just be patient and keep going toward your goals. You will get there and it will be the best decision you have ever made.

“Also, ask for help when you need it. Don’t try to do it alone. Opening a business is a lot of work and you need a good support system to help you through it. You will break down, you will get frustrated, and there are times that you will think about giving up, but you will get through it. Rely on the people around you to help you through the hard times. It goes a long way having a support system to help you achieve your goals.”

To learn more about Dart Zone, Inc., visit the business on Facebook and Instagram.

Sydney Garofolo is a senior at The University of Scranton and an Intern at the Women’s Entrepreneurship Center (WEC) who works under the supervision of Donna Simpson, Consultant Manager.