At some point, inflatable play equipment moved from the church festival to the suburbs, and franchises like Pump It Up started popping up all over the country, including very recently in Brookfield at 195 N. Janacek Rd.
Pump It Up -- aka "The Inflatable Party Zone" -- is an indoor play area with giant inflatable structures that are said to promote social development while challenging kids to bounce, slide, climb and jump on a variety of brightly colored, interactive and physically challenging inflatables housed in a brand new facility.
Owner Sheldon Moysis decided to purchase a Pump It Up franchise with his wife, Kathy, for a variety of reasons -- mainly because it seemed like something cool and different for kids.
"Speaking as a parent with two young children, my wife Kathy and I have personally experienced the range of children's entertainment facilities and I can tell you that Pump It Up is really unique," says Moysis.
Pump It Up offers parties, special events and pop-in playtime. Two party packages are available: the Classic Party and the Mini-Classic. The Classic Party costs $220-$255 depending on the day of the week, and features a two-hour party for up to 25 friends (it's $10 extra for each additional guest). The Mini-Classic is $170, lasts 90 minutes and allows for 14 guests. The Mini-Classic Party must be held Monday thru Friday before 2 p.m.
Both packages include invitations, and supervision by the Pump It Up staff who set up and clean up the party. Parents may bring in a cake, chips (no dip) and candy; Pump It Up sells pizza, soda and goodie bags.
"A party at Pump It Up is a private party, meaning that you and your guests will have the private use of an arena and adjacent party room, eliminating both crowds and issues that can sometimes result from an incompatible mix of patrons," says Moysis.
The franchise also offers "Pop-in Playtimes" for two to six year olds on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. The cost is $9 per child; $7 for each additional sibling. Parents must stay in the facility with their children, and space is limited.
Adults must sign a waiver before their kids can play at Pump It Up and children must wear socks.
Pump It Up caters to larger groups, providing special packages for field trips, fundraisers, group events and corporate team building.
The first Pump It Up opened in Califorinia in 2000. There are now 135 facilities in 30 states. There is also a Pump It Up in Madison.
Wauwatosa's Madeleine Brock recently took her three-year-old son, Reggie, to Brookfield's Pump It Up. "It was a hoot," she says. "Definitely different from the usual trip to Betty Brinn (children's museum)."
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.