December 11, 2012
If you have ever planned a big event before, you know how stressful it can be. With so many aspects of the event to consider, it is easy to get overwhelmed and stressed out. Between fund raising, food, volunteers, permits, party supplies, and lets not forget inflatables, where do you start?
At Astro Jump of Metro DC we have years of experience in working with individuals in Northern Virginia, Washington DC and Montgomery and Prince George’s counties to help them plan large events. Our job is not to plan your whole event (sorry!), but rather to use our experience to support you in the planning process and on event day. Having done thousands of events and parties over the years, we have learned a few helpful tips that when followed can make everything about the event and the event planning process run much smoother. The most important topic we always discuss with people is flow.
The flow of an event determines how much fun people have while attending. No one likes long lines. While lines can’t always be avoided, as long as the lines are moving, people tend to be okay with them (sort of like going an indirect way home rather than sitting in traffic). This is extremely important to consider when choosing what types of entertainment to have at your event. Some popular forms of entertainment might be a ton of fun, but at the same time not be good at handling large crowds of people. Just because it worked well at your family picnic does not mean that it will work well at your church’s fall festival. When looking at inflatables and which ones should be chosen for events, flow is one of the the first aspects of the party that Astro Jump representatives will discuss.
For example, let’s assume you are planning your fifth grade son’s class party at the end of the year. There are 75 children in his class and your budget is very tight. Your objective is to throw a party that will entertain all of the children for a few hours with only a small handful of parent volunteers. You have quite the task at hand.
As a lover of moonbounces, your first thought is to call Astro Jump and rent one of our larger moonbounces. You think that if you can just get one big enough, everyone will be happy, right? Wrong. While a moonbounce might be a fun part of the party, our largest moonbounce can still only hold a fraction of the people that will be attending. While 15 kids are jumping in the moonbounce, the other 60 will be bored standing in a line that isn’t moving. Instead, we would suggest an inflatable slide or obstacle course. These are much better options to begin the planning process because while only 2 can go at a time, the line will be moving constantly. The kids will run through the piece and hop right back in line for more. In this situation, by choosing an obstacle course or giant slide, you have increased the flow of your party considerably.
You might still have an issue however. You do have an inflatable that is good at handling large crowds of people, but it still is only ONE activity. Ideally you don’t want all 75 children standing in the same line even if it is moving. This is when we would either suggest another inflatable, or even two depending on your budget, that also provides strong flow for your party. If you still insist on having a moonbounce, we might suggest something like a moonbounce combo. Yes, they are enclosed and will still have the potential of creating a traffic jam, but they also have a slide inside of them. The slide allows for children to jump for a minute and then go down the slide which takes them off the piece. Rather than having a volunteer struggle all day to get groups off in order to allow the next group on, the slide gives the volunteer an easier and more fun way to help the transition to a new group. We would still recommend having a giant slide and obstacle course over a moonbounce combo and an obstacle course, but if you just gotta have that moonbounce, this is what we would suggest. To provide yet another activity to keep the group split up, constantly moving, and stay within your budget, we might also suggest a popcorn, cotton candy or sno cone machine. These are all fun and affordable foods that will allow groups of kids to take a break and continue to celebrate the end of the school year.
With three activities all specifically chosen to make the event fun and help keep the flow of the party, the party will be a success. By choosing high volume inflatables you are allowing more kids to have more fun for more time. On top of that, you are making the volunteers’ jobs significantly easier by creating the flow of the party for them. Rather than struggling the whole time to keep kids moving and entertained, you will see that with only a little bit of direction from the event leader that the party will have a flow of its own. The next time you are put in charge of a big event, call Astro Jump and we will help you make sure it’s the easiest party ever.