Kids will jump for joy at Chandler bounce park - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Kids will jump for joy at Chandler bounce park

December 8th, 2021 development
Kids will jump for joy at Chandler bounce park
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Kids will jump for joy at Chandler bounce park

By Ken Sain, Staff Writer

Some entrepreneurs saw an opportunity during the pandemic. Laurence Hallier said before the pandemic he and his partner did a number of Instagram pop-up museums at malls. It was successful, with some 300,000 people checking it out.

However, he said they agreed that wouldn’t work after COVID-19. They wanted something big. Very big. They settled on the Funbox, the world’s biggest outdoor bounce park and chose Chandler to be one of the first cities to get to try it out.

It is built in the west parking lot of the Chandler Fashion Center. The park consists of three inflatable structures, one that is 24,200 square feet. Combined with the other two that brings the total to 25,000.

“We saw that things have shifted, the masks are going to stick around, so that’s when we decided to design something unique and different,” Hallier said.

Since there were no large gatherings during the pandemic, Hallier and his partner used that time to design and build two giant inflatable bounce parks that they plan to travel to different locations. The first opened in Woodland Hills, California, about seven weeks ago. The other opened in Chandler three weeks ago.

Hallier said the original plan was for the bounce park to stay in Chandler through January, but Hallier said if demand remains strong, they are open to keeping it here into February. It’s scheduled to go to Sacramento after its Chandler run.

“It was really fun,” said 7-year-old Maya Battle. “My favorite part was the climbing stuff, and the little cute animal thingys.”

Brigdon Schaub, 11, agreed.

“It’s really fun,” he said. He said his favorite part was the maze.

Based on the full parking lot, the attraction has been popular.

“We did opening weekend for a $1 a ticket, and we had 5,000 people come out,” Hallier said. “We donated the money to a foster charity.”

Hallier said that’s something they do every time they open a new attraction. His partner, 27-year-old Antonio Nieves was part of the foster system.

“We kind of focus on the older foster kids, because they’re the ones that kind of get lost, 16-plus,” Hallier said.

Hallier said Nieves is the creative force behind the bounce park, and that he helped design and engineer it. He said the parks were built in China and because they are so large, they had to be built outdoors.

“The challenge was no one had ever built anything like this,” Hallier said. “I think the largest one ever built before us was 8,000 square feet.”

That would be less than a third the size of their bounce park. It only takes about five minutes to fill it with air, but it takes about an hour to deflate.

The Funbox bounce park is open Fridays through Sundays and it costs $26 to play inside for two hours. There is no age limit. Hallier said they will likely be back again next year. They also plan to add to it with a couple of additional obstacle course structures, one for 13 and younger and the other for older folks.

“One thing that has surprised us is the repeat business,” he said. “We were never in the repeat business, and we’re getting a lot of that.”

Hallier said it takes 20 minutes to go through the entire bounce park.

“It has a hide-’n’-seek area, an obstacle course, a bunch of slides, a dodge ball court, it’s pretty cool,” he said.

 

If you go

What: Funbox Bounce Park

Where: West parking lot of Chandler Fashion Center, Loop 101 and Chandler Blvd.

When: 2-9 p.m. Fridays; 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturdays; 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sundays through Jan. 15.

Tickets: Timed tickets. $26 for two hours. 

Buy them at: funbox.com or at the site.

Kids will jump for joy at Chandler bounce park

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