BANGOR, Maine — A little more than three weeks after closing, the Maine Jump will soon be leaping back into the Bangor amusements scene under new ownership.
Ryan Hatch and his wife, Kristen, may be new owners, but they’re old hands when it comes to the area and the party and event business.
“We’re excited to get up here. I mean, I grew up here. A lot of people still in this community did a lot of things for me growing up,” said Ryan Hatch, a Brewer native and former standout baseball player at Brewer High School.
Kristen Hatch is a Bangor native and Bangor High School graduate.
The Hatches have bought the bounce house and children’s amusement business located on Hogan Road from Paddy Murphy’s bar owner John Dobbs, who ran the Maine Jump two months before closing it due to dwindling business.
“We came up here earlier this year and noticed there was nothing up here for children, besides Great Skates and the movie theater,” Ryan Hatch said. “There’s no Chuck E. Cheese’s, no water slides, nothing. So we started looking into this. … We were close to opening a place … where Front Row Video was [on Union Street], but we got word that John was opening this place and we backed out.”
The Hatches have been living in the Fort Lauderdale and Miami areas in Florida for the last seven years, but the second chance to take the plunge and move back home was too great to pass up.
“I want to be here for my kids. My family and my wife’s family is all here. We have no family in Florida,” Hatch said. “My mom was going to sell everything and move to Florida to see us and the grandchildren, so this is really exciting for our family.”
He’s also excited about the prospect of running the Maine Jump and expanding and augmenting its features and services.
“We’re adding the Adrenaline Rush Extreme, which at 2,200 square feet is the largest inflatable unit available in the U.S. and the largest indoor inflatable obstacle course in New England,” said Hatch, who will also be adding an age-specific Mini Maine Zone area with inflatable play units for children ages 4 and under.
Other changes include a 30-square-foot adult area featuring a 10-foot leather couch, leather chairs, Wi-Fi access, free coffee, a 50-inch high-definition TV with cable and a sports interactive area featuring football skills games. Once the weather warms up, Hatch plans to set up outdoor inflatable water slides, another obstacle course and inflatable movie screens.
“We’re going to have campfires with marshmallow roasts and we want to do outdoor concerts with child-friendly performers like Rick Charette,” said Hatch.
Some of the holdovers that will remain are the indoor obstacle course, inflatable slides, arcade games, air hockey and 1,000-square-foot painting featuring Maine landmarks by Chez Cherry that may be the largest indoor mural in the state.
The Maine Jump’s hours will also be expanded: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday. The Maine Jump is open to children ages 12 and under, who must be accompanied by parents. Parents are admitted free.
The facility is also available on a rental basis for parties, corporate events, fundraisers and other special occasions.
Concessions will still include healthful options such as gluten-free pizza and brownies, milk, sugar-free candy, fruit cups and juices, but also more traditional fare such as regular pizza, popcorn, macaroni and cheese, chicken nuggets, ice cream, cotton candy and pretzels.
The Hatches, who run a party store and an event rental business in Florida, will do the same in Bangor, running two companies out of the Maine Jump that specialize in party supplies and rentals.
“We have 160 products in our inventory down in Florida that we’re going to bring up here,” said Ryan Hatch. “We’ve already opened the party store part of our business with 50,000 items available to order.”
The Hatches plan to reopen the Maine Jump on Friday, Oct. 7.