With Help from SCORE Bucks County, Home Care Aide Launches Inflatable Party Rental Business
Toward the beginning of the shutdown, Megan Wachter stepped back from her home care profession to take care of her father.
Needing “something fun” in her life, Wachter and her husband, Gino, in June 2021, launched Bounce Around Bucks Party Rentals. The couple, who live in Falls Township, provide a variety of inflatable amusements for birthday parties, as well as community and special events.
Her husband mentioned the idea, knowing “a lot of people want to do outside parties and things at home,” she said. Still, Megan was not sure it would work.
“I told him it was nuts like three times,” she said.
The couple began researching the idea and in Nov. 2020, began consulting with SCORE Bucks County mentor Joe Lutes. Lutes helped Megan put together a business plan and revenue projections, shared insight about insurance and encouraged her to investigate regulations related to inflatable amusements. He also suggested that the couple establish the business as an LLC.
“It’s a Godsend of a program,” she said of SCORE. “To find a group of people to this level that are willing to go above and beyond to help other people was absolutely amazing.”
Integral to getting started was undergoing necessary state training and certifications. Megan and her husband are both certified ride inspectors. In addition, every three years they must take a three-day course in Harrisburg and pass a subsequent test. As an added layer of consumer protection, Bounce Around Bucks must re-register all equipment with the state each year.
Recognizing that Bounce Around Bucks is not the only party and inflatable rental company in the area, Lutes discussed how she could differentiate her business from competitors. Early preparation paid off with 30 five-star Google reviews, according to Lutes.
“I couldn’t be happier for her and her husband and feel they will continue to be successful,” Lutes said. “Her persistence early on with a couple issues helped her confidence level. She clearly took my advice to heart, and it has paid off.”
In all, Bounce Around Bucks put on 84 events in the second half of 2021, which was far more than Wachter had anticipated as a new business.
“People just kept calling me,” she said. “It took off.”
Early on Bounce Around Bucks partnered on events with the Yardley VFW Post 6393, the Friday Night Food Truck Rally at Playwicki Farm in Feasterville and Langhorne Borough Harvest Day.
Bounce Around Bucks offers rentals of six inflatables, as well as two 20×20 party tents, which seat up to 32 people. Tables and chairs are also available, as are 20-foot water slides and projector equipment for screening of an outdoor movie.
Megan’s son, Avery, 16, enjoys the flexibility of being able to work around his sports and academic schedule.
She thought the winter months would provide a respite from events, giving her a chance to return to her home care work. However, the milder winter weather has customers still calling. The side business she and her husband created has taken on a life of its own.
“I did plan on going back to work,” she said, adding that during the week she cleans and sanitizes inflatables, inspects them, and compiles paperwork for upcoming events. “This just kept going and going.”
Megan stays connected with Lutes as business-related questions arise.
“I still talk to him about different things when I need help,” she said. “We do keep in touch.”
Learn more about the organization and the work they are doing in the community at SCORE Bucks County.
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