That’s a Big Inflatable

The overall amount of strange inflatables that I have covered in this blog is pretty dense. There were inflatable jets, a big inflatable rat and even inflatable pubs that could be schilling beer anywhere after a brief inflating. You might not think that inflatables have been used like this before reading and now you have a fun fact to tell your friends! Today, I found a story about an inflatable that isn’t necessarily strange, it’s just really, really big.

According to a story in Bangor Daily News, a local amusement area that recently closed will reopen with an incredibly large inflatable structure:

“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 [new owner Ryan] Hatch, who will also be adding an age-specific Mini Maine Zone area with inflatable play units for children ages 4 and under.”

The space – called the Maine Jump – is known in the area as an amusement center that rents out to people looking to hold events like parties and corporate retreats. Although it is certainly the most noticeable feature of the space, the 2200 square foot inflatable is not the only thing at the Main Jump, at least according to the article:

“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.”

However cool this place sounds – consider just how big 2200 feet of inflatable goodness is. That’s roughly the square footage of a volleyball court! That’s definitely a serious inflatable space!

 

 

 

Inflatables & Team Building

Any business owner worth his salt will tell you that team building is one of the most important elements in any effective company. Making sure that all of your departments and employees are capable of working together effectively is crucial to the financial and overall success of your business model. Team building exercises act as a way to improve communication within your company walls, strengthen efficiency and bring your team to an understanding of how to increase productivity by working together. While there are a number of ways to achieve these goals, inflatables are an excellent way to bring your employees together. Here are some of the inflatables that will help you with your company:

Human FoosballHuman foosball is a great inflatable when considering how your team is only effective when they work together. In this inflatable version of the classic table game, 10 of your employees get into a 50 ft by 30 ft arena and play a human sized version of foosball as the little men on the rods! Since the players are harnessed in together, they must move as a team to play effectively. Perfect for building unity within the office environment in a fun way!

Jacob’s Ladder – Having a friendly competition can also reinforce bonds made within your office and the Jacob’s Ladder provides a way to achieve this! Have two co-workers try and climb to the top of these unstable rope ladders as quickly as possible! It may sound dangerous, but it’s safe for everyone, especially with the inflatable floor!

Laser BattleThe ultimate in team activities that are both rewarding and extremely fun, a good laser tag game is an excellent way to make teams and show how working together is quite effective in real world and company situations. And who doesn’t love a good game of laser tag?

 

Halloween Decoration Ideas

Okay, it may seem a little early to start thinking about this, but Halloween is only a little over a month away from us. Instead of hastily picking out a costume or decorating at the last minute, maybe you’ll want to start thinking about your Hollow’s Eve plans right now. Speaking of decorations for the scariest night of the year, there are literally hundreds of ways to add elements of the holiday to your home in celebration. Here are some ideas:

–          Cover the interior furniture of your home (at least the parts that can be seen by treat or treaters) with white – maybe blood covered – sheets to give the appearance that some type of strange, sinister events have taken place in the home. You can also add these types of elements around your home – i.e. some signs on the exterior of your house can be added, but make sure they are a little crooked. Perfectly aligned warning signs aw

–          Making your food theme mimic disgusting body parts and other unappetizing things. For instance, you can use chocolate cake, frosting and a gummy worm to make a cup that looks like a pile of dirt. If you’re feeling particularly inventive, find a small skeleton hand for right next to the gummy worm.

–          Carving a pumpkin can be a totally arduous process, but you don’t always have to go through with it every Halloween if you simply don’t have time. Buy some orange balloons and draw carved faces into them with a Sharpie.

–          Have a stereo in your home pumping out classic Halloween songs like the Monster Mash and also having mood music in the background. This is definitely an effective and inexpensive way to ad a sense of fear and atmosphere to your home.

–          Finally, consider getting a custom inflatable of a pumpkin, candy corn or whatever you’re thinking of so that your front yard doesn’t feel left out of the decorating.

Inflatables Find a Starring Role and Other Stories

Some months ago, I wrote about uses for inflatables that aren’t as mainstream as a jumper or bounce house you may have in your backyard from a graduation or birthday party. The last few months have been pretty heavy on safety issues regarding inflatables so I figured that now is a better time than never to start talking about the more entertaining uses for inflatables. There have been a few stories strewn about the news world lately:

Lights, Camera, Inflate! – Although I’ve mentioned the use of inflatables in movies as a means to fill audiences in movie scenes before, I never thought I’d see such widespread usage of this technique in Hollywood. Just a little while ago, The King’s Speech was using a pile of inflatable people to fill in the spaces of a crowd surround lead actor Colin Firth. Now it seems that many productions are using this method to cut down on costs, according to a piece in Wired Magazine:

“The Inflatable Crowd is a Santa Monica company that supplies seas of lifelike blow-up dolls to films like Iron Man 2, The Fighter, and Contagion. Outsourcing the role of “background actors” to inanimate objects isn’t new, of course; producers have used cardboard cutouts in the past. But those two-dimensional performers severely limit usable camera angles.”

Costing just $10 a head per day, producers are saving serious dough on those expensive CGI crowd scenes in many flicks these days.

Where’s My Hovercraft? – As a technologically advanced society, you’d think we’d have hovercrafts by now as a means of transportation, but it has yet to happen. Nonetheless, one ad agency is using the idea of advanced transportation as a means to use inflatable advertising. One story from The Providence Journal expands on inflatable concept cars, even if they can’t be used as anything but advertisement:

“Unfortunately, close up you’ll see there’s nobody in these cars. There can’t be — they’d sink. These Morris Minis can be pulled behind motorboats and they’ll stay up…”

 

Inflatables as Art

The world of inflatables is as adaptable as the world of experimental art. You may think I’m crazy for saying so, but hear me out. If you think about the number of types of inflatables there are in the world (inflatable bounce houses, inflatable yacht slides, jumpers, etc.) and think about the various kinds of art displayed at this moment, it’s not that farfetched. Interestingly enough, there is a recent work of art that asserts my notion.

In a recent post on Fast Co Design, a writer describes a project being taken on by ‘architects of air’:

“Peer inside the pillowy innards and you can see grown adults burrowing into the billowing neon tunnels, or gawking in quiet amazement at the stained glass-like domes.”

This is just the beginning of these inflatable installations, which are an amazing lighted journey that can be enjoyed by adults and children alike. The currecnt project resides in Australia at the moment, outside of the Sydney Opera House. However, this is not the only project this firm has taken up in the name of inflatable art:

“For almost a decade, the firm has been building these pneumatic neon Hobbit holes, mounting 500 installations in an astounding 37 countries. Founder Alan Parkinson originated the concept in the ’80s and collaborated with a manufacturer in their hometown of Nottingham, U.K. to produce a proprietary PVC plastic only used on these inflatables.”

These inflatable structures are no simple task to construct and inflate either – even though the number of projects that have been completed is pretty high:

“Assembly…can take about four hours and reach a size of up to 1,000 square meters. The different components are zipped together and can be inflated to its full size — with domes about 10 meters high — in as little as 20 minutes. Each structure’s peaks and domes along its exterior results in a completely different experience inside, depending on how the sunlight is filtered and sliced.”

So you see? By utilizing something as simple as light, an inflatable can be transformed into a work of art!