An old warehouse off Pleasant Street has been transformed into acres of fun for kids and the young at heart, and Launch Trampoline Park has more improvements coming as it nears its one-year anniversary.
The 37,000-square-foot building features six trampoline areas and other fun activities, the facility has plenty of activities. The Watertown location, which opened in January, is part of the Launch franchise – partly owned by former Patriot Ty Law – but it is owned and run by Mark and Ginny Murphy.
It offers dodgeball and extreme dodgeball courts (one with an extra wall of trampolines in the middle). Trampolines with basketball hoops to dunk on and a foam pit are also popular. Gymnasts and cheerleaders like to take a run on the tumbling track.
Finally, for those not afraid of heights, there’s the tower and stunt bag. People can choose to jump from 10 feet or 20 feet onto the large stunt balloon, which is 6 feet tall when fully inflated.
“It’s the only indoor tower in the nation,” Ginny said. “There is one in New Hampshire but it is outdoors.”
Mark worked for Launch to find locations to expand into. He liked what he saw when he found he spot in Watertown, across Pleasant Street from Russo’s market.
“I found three locations and I wanted this one,” said Mark, who started his first business 25 years ago a few blocks east on Pleasant Street.
Launch’s biggest audience is children, but they have expanded into older and younger groups – sometimes adding new times to accommodate them. One a recent morning, several mothers and their toddlers enjoyed a largely empty Launch, with children’s tunes playing.
The toddler time is available before the facility opens to the public Monday to Friday from 9-11 a.m. as well as on Sundays from 8-10 a.m.
Earlier this month the park debuted its Middle School Teen Nights.
“We shut down the regular lights and put on the black lights, and we put the music on,” Ginny said.
They also started a Sensory Saturdays for children who do not do well in loud and overstimulated environments.
“We keep the regular lights on, the music is very soft or we turn it off,” Ginny said. “It used to be once a month, but it needed to be more consistent for parents.”
The Murphys take parent feedback very seriously. They recently made some changes to the food offerings because of what they were hearing from customers.
“We heard from a mom that she wanted to have her son’s birthday party here but the pizza stinks,” Mark said. “The pizza does not stink anymore. We are using fresh pizza from Sal’s now, instead of frozen.”
Some healthier additions have been made to the menu, too, Ginny said.
“We got feedback from some moms wanting healthier options,” Ginny said. “We are working on offering some healthier treats – platters from Russo’s: Fruit platters, Cru d’etat.”
Kids are not the only ones who have taken to Launch. Groups have found Launch to be a good place for trainings, get-to-know-yous and fund-raisers. The Watertown Recreation Department used it to train summer employees and companies sometimes use it for training. Several local colleges used it this fall, including Boston College, Brandeis, Bentley and Lasell.
“As a team building project one dorm tried to build a pyramid using the foam blocks while standing on the trampoline,” Ginny said. “It broke the ice. They had a blast.”
The normal entry fee is $15 for an hour, but discounts are offered for Middle School Teen Nights, toddler time and Sensory Saturdays. College students get in for $10 an hour with their ID.
Find out more about Launch Watertown at launchwatertown.com.