Business, Marketing, and Life Advice for Local Business Owners

Alternative Title: Will COVID-19 Have a Permanent Impact on the Indoor Playground and Family Entertainment Center Industry?

Mar 24, 2020

I’m writing this on March 24, 2020- while we are smack in the middle of a global health crisis. I live in New York so we have been quarantined for just over a week, and indoor playgrounds around the country have been mandated to close until further notice.

While “social distancing” seems to (so far) be “flattening the curve”, so to speak (with the main aim of “flattening the curve” being to prevent a sharp peak of cases and spread out the infection...

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How We Keep Our Indoor Play Space Clean: Top 7 Tips

Jan 28, 2020

Something that we are consistently asked by customers year-round, but especially when we are in the throes of flu-season, is how we sanitize our space and keep it clean.

While I can’t speak for other facilities, I know that keeping our space sparkling clean is a top priority. After all, my own children play there daily-- so I have a personal stake in the effectiveness of our cleaning procedures as well.

So today I’d love to shed some light on how we manage to keep germs at bay...

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4 Things I'm Leaving in 2019 (HELLO 2020!)

Jan 01, 2020

Happy New Years everyone!

If you’re reading this on the day this post was published, then we just kicked off 2020, and I hope you had an AMAZING time celebrating with your families. If you are anything like me, you LOVE this time of year because it means reflection and goal-setting.

But this New Year’s looks a little bit different for me.

You see-- in years’ past my “resolutions” were all about things I wanted to do MORE of in the new year. I wanted to exercise...

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5 Tips from an Introverted Business Owner

Oct 25, 2019

Owning any business can be difficult as an introvert, but it can be especially challenging when the business is a local brick-and-mortar retail venture.

Even if the owner is not physically present at the store much, the thousands of interactions with customers each week can still require a great deal of intervention and therefore energy from the business owner.

For example, even though I only physically work at my cafe a few times a month-- I am still constantly interacting with customers...

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5 Fun (Inexpensive!) Ideas to Add to Your Child’s Next Party

Sep 06, 2019

One of the things parents love most about hosting their child’s event at our facility is the freedom we allow when it comes to decorating. There is something so special about seeing the birthday child walk into their party and watching their face light up because their favorite character/ show/ book/ animal has been brought to life with the decor. 

My favorite part of my sons’ parties when they were under 5 years old was seeing their faces when they came in through the door....

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An Unfortunate Truth I've Noticed as the Owner of an Indoor Playground

Aug 24, 2019

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, I’d like to first start off my saying this will not be my typical post detailing fun birthday parties or giving indoor-playground business advice. But this topic has been on my mind and in my heart for several months now, so I have to get this out. I’ll do my best to be brief.

I’d also like to preface this by saying that we at Climbing Vines Cafe and Play are so blessed to have an extremely kind, loyal, and respectful group of...

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15 Frequently Asked Questions About Our Indoor Playground Facility

Jul 30, 2019

Our family-owned and operated 2,500 sq. foot space features a clean, imaginative play-area for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, as well as a barista-staffed gourmet coffee, tea, and espresso cafe for adults. It is large enough for the children to run & play, yet intimate enough for adults and caregivers to relax, have a conversation, or catch-up on work.

If you’re a regular at Climbing Vines Cafe and Play, this information should be familiar, but today we want to share some...

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5 Ways We Prepare our Play Cafe For Emergencies

Jun 26, 2019

These days, especially if you are in the U.S., even minor injuries like a finger jam or a slip and fall can have devastating effects on your small business, so the recreational aspect of an indoor playground makes us especially vulnerable to injuries, lawsuits, and disgruntled customers.

We also of course want to prioritize the safety of our guests as much as we possibly can.

Remaining prepared during any sort of personal-injury emergency should be self-explanatory but it’s,...

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The Only Time We've Had to FIRE a Customer

Jun 19, 2019

The only time we’ve “fired” a customer happened a little over 6 months ago. While this was a difficult decision to make, it was necessary for the well-being and safety of our other customers. Unfortunately, not every family is going to share our philosophies or feel obligated to abide by our policies, so we have found it is easier to let those customers go and focus on the customers that do love and respect our space and our rules.

Speaking of rules, we at Climbing Vines...

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5 Reasons to Book an Indoor Summer Birthday Party for your Child

May 21, 2019

If you live in an area like we do in Western New York (we’re in Rochester!) with beautifully hot summers and cold snowy winters, you’ll know that your options for your child’s birthday party are largely dependent on the weather.

As an August baby, we always had small family parties outside at my house. But, with sons born in November and March, we are always left to book an indoor venue for their celebrations, if we chose to have them that year. While those with children...

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