It had been a while since I stopped by Bounce Milwaukee, the only inflatable sports arena with laser tag, rock climbing, obstacle courses, a full bar and a restaurant in the city. During a recent visit, I was introduced to aspects of the family-owned business that I had not experienced before – some of which, to my joy, included tater tots.
Located at 2801 S. 5th Circle in Bay View, Bounce is as much of a grown-up destination as it is a kid zone. Adults can jump, slide, laser tag, climb, box, play video games, sumo wrestle (which is $10 extra but worth it to put on the fat suits) and more, in between drinking beers or cocktails and snacking on healthy, or unhealthy, food.
"If you're 21, you could come in the morning and stay until bar time," says Becky Cooper-Clancy, who owns the business with her husband Ryan. "Actually, I would challenge anyone to do that. It takes a lot of energy to bounce. Even friends who are marathon runners and cross trainers have said that after five minutes bouncing they were wiped out."
Although Bounce provides an extremely active experience, perhaps the greatest offerings in the space are the free, 20-minute massage chairs. My arms, legs, back and butt were thanking me for a full day after sinking into one of those bad boys. The only problem was I didn’t want to do anything else except sit there and get kneaded by an electric chair. Forever.
Clancy and Cooper-Clancy are also not afraid to express their opinions on social justice issues. Earlier this summer, when Leon’s Custard made national news for restricting employees from speaking Spanish to customers, Bounce offered a free scoop of Purple Door Ice Cream to anyone who ordered in a language other than English, "to celebrate the amazing cultures and languages in our city."
Here are eight more reasons why Bounce is worth a pop in:
1. Drink a Bloody
2. Climb a wall
3. Eat a tot pizza
4. Or just a big ol' bowl of tots
5. Get massaged by a chair
6. Get zapped
8. Bounce (duh)
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.