Whenever our family is able to take a trip somewhere in the US, we always make an effort to stop in to a new Pump It Up facility that we have never been to before. As the President, I was so busy when we were opening all of them, that I have only made it out to maybe 30 of the 150 that opened in the first few years! I enjoy visiting various Pump It Ups (PIUs) and visiting with the owners. I feel a kinship with them – even the ones that have opened since my departure. After all, I have a lot in common with those who are passionate about the same things!
Recently, we were blessed with a trip to Virginia to watch my son Jake play in the Babe Ruth World Series. While traveling from the airport in Washington to Leesburg, we drove by a Pump It Up right on the highway frontage! What great signage! I had to pay a visit.
I recalled meeting the Flynns, owners of the Leesburg location, while they were in franchise training. Unfortunately, they were out of town this particular visit, so I kept my stay short. As I walked into the PIU, I was greeted warmly, and asked if I needed help. I could feel the positive energy in the front lobby! There were a few children with their parents in the waiting area, watching a video and laughing… “Wow,” I thought, “I love Pump it Up. I love the joy that is created over and over and over again”.
The girl running the front counter was busy checking in a family who was there for a party. The front entryway looked just like every other Pump It Up; bright primary colors, checkered floor, great signage, clean and inviting. The girl was pleasant. When I introduced myself, she spoke eloquently, yet, as she was interacting with the customers, she had a slightly more animated, joyful voice – the voice and temperament of the perfect Pump It Up employee.
The inside of the arena smelled of freshly cleaned floors — it was early in the morning but this isn’t easy to obtain in an arena of carpeting, with smelly feet running on it all day!! Prior to the acquisition of PIU, my partner, Terry and I secured an agreement with Clorox to have our facilities “Clorox clean.” Boy, was this one Clorox clean!
As I left, I realized that the mission statement and branding promise of the business, which I began 10 years ago, was still alive and breathing in every Pump it Up across the country, and soon around the world, because we are expanding internationally right now.
Here is the branding promise we created for Pump It Up ten years ago: Pump It Up is the entertainment experience that provides a private, safe, and stress-free party environment when celebrating with family and friends. We did it then, and we still do it now! That is what I call a sustainable brand!
I really enjoyed seeing Leesburg Pump It Up. Congratulations to Pump It Up of Leesburg owners, the Flynn’s, for maintaining an amazing facility and to PIU Corporate for continuing to nurture the culture throughout the franchise system! It is truly exciting to see.