Jump!Zone’s indoor playgrounds envelop kids aged 2–12 in an inflatable world filled with challenging obstacle courses, fun slides, and cardio-boosting bounce houses. While navigating the plush courses under the watchful eyes of air-filled dinosaurs and superheroes, kids burn off extra energy and participate in activities that may help develop motor skills. Jump!Zone’s energetic staff supervises all play as kids climb on pirate ships and trampoline inside princess castles. Specific inflatables may vary by location but often include towering bounce houses shaped like fire trucks or octopi as well as party rooms, games, pizza, soda, and other festive fare. The bouncy center also hosts birthday parties, fundraisers, and special events.
Husband-and-wife photography team Bert and Cindy Behnke would be formidable competitors—if they didn't run Behnke Fine Portraiture together. Both earned master of photography and photographic craftsman degrees from the Professional Photographers of America (PPA), along with numerous accolades. Cindy has been the Illinois and PPA Photographer of the Year, and Bert won the PPA's International Award and served as the organization's president. They strut their shutter-snapping skills at their studio in Mokena, tucked amid 2 acres of wooded areas that give clients a scenic alternative to in-studio shoots.
Catering to Chicago and Northwest Indiana, Music 4 Life furnishes any party with entertainment professionals dedicated to transforming dull events into hopping shindigs. DJs draw on more than 60,000 hit songs from the ’50s through the modern day to light up dance floors, and karaoke machines draw on more than 100,000 songs to encourage sing-alongs. Other services include photo-booth rentals with props, mood-setting uplighting, and promotions to spread the word about newly opened businesses and kids’ first haircuts.
For more than two decades, American Mattress has promoted peaceful slumber in bedchambers throughout the Midwest with their vast selection of mattresses, headboards, and linens. The sleep experts strive to stay abreast of the latest bedding technology: their Serta mattresses are made with gel foam that supports curves, and Tempur-Pedic mattresses repel allergens, mites, and poltergeists looking to spoon. This devotion to a good night’s sleep has helped them earn the title of Best Mattress Store from suburban Chicago’s Daily Herald five years in a row. Additionally, American Mattress doubles down on each of its beds with a 30-day comfort guarantee and a 60-day best-price guarantee.
Alsip Home and Nursery, which was named Best Nursery/Garden Center 2010 by the SouthtownStar, has more than 40 years of sowing, growing, and plant-bestowing experience. The expansive greenhouse and nursery houses hundreds of annuals, perennials, tropical houseplants, vegetables, bulbs, and seasonal plants looking for a place to lay their roots. Plant a shrub such as the Magic Carpet Spirea ($6.97) to coat the ground in lush colors that can hide a spare key. Bring some frostable greenery into your garden with a 4.5" Proven Winner plant ($3.99). 'Tis nearly the season to invite a tree into your home to share holiday pies; fresh-cut Christmas trees and trim will soon be available (starting at $19.99).