How your clients refer to you:
email: firstname.lastname@example.org; website: bubbledad.com; IG: @Bubbledad; Facebook: Bubbledad; Twitter: @BubbledadNYC
How many years have you been in business in NYC?
How did you get your start and what was your initial inspiration?
When my son was six he wanted to have a bubble-themed birthday party. I bought a bunch of bubble toys for the party and that was it. I was hooked. After a few years of making bigger and bigger bubbles as a hobby, and after having taken a sabbatical from my 23-year career in non-profit administration, it finally struck me that my love of bubbles and all their fun scientific properties was the perfect match for my master’s degree in informal education. Once these elements started coming into focus, Bubbledad was born. Bubbling brings me an immense amount of joy. Partly because it's so incredibly satisfying but mostly because bubbles make EVERYONE smile. (Well, just about everyone...) My hope is that every bubble I create will bring a smile to someone's face and in some small way make the world a little bit happier place to be.
What do you feel differentiates you from others in your field?
Parents have a world of choices when it comes to party entertainers. Having studied early childhood education and particularly how kids and adults learn outside the classroom, I bring that passion for teaching into every performance. I get really excited whenever I’m bubbling and my excitement is infectious. I’ve also spent more than ten years working with museum visitors at several major New York City museums so customer service is critical to me.
What do you feel gives you longevity in this big city with so many options?
My show is constantly evolving, changing and improving. I’m an inveterate tinkerer so I’m always working on my next great bubble making invention!
How do you positively impact your clientele?
I make people smile. Not just with the huge, gorgeous bubbles, but also with conversation. Over the years, I’ve learned how to harness one of my greatest super powers courtesy of my ADHD: I love talking to people. A recent study at Washington University linked conversation to overall happiness. People love to be engaged and I go out of my way to incorporate both kids and adults in my shows.
What is your favorite part of your job?
Right before a child pops a huge bubble there’s a glow in their eyes that is heart melting. Sometimes kids try to hug my bubbles.
What is your favorite secret NYC spot?
I’m partial because I used to work there but the Museum of American Finance on Wall Street is a hidden gem (literally--there are gems there!) It makes money and finance fun and it’s never too early to start talking about financial literacy with kids!
How do you benefit mamas?
Having been a museum educator for many years, I have the ability to cater to any age from toddler to teen so parents don’t have to worry about whether older/younger siblings and/or guests will be engaged. And I make the planning process easy by working with every client individually based on their venue, the amount of time they have, potential weather issues, etc.
What is the most memorable feedback a client has given you?
My very first client (a parent who worked in marketing) gave me some sage advice: Bubbledad sells himself. I was worried about my sales pitch and trying to be super professional as the owner of a small business, but she reminded me that the reason she hired me (in addition to my awesome bubbling skills) was that I was so personable and down to earth.
Pay it forward and name your top colleagues in the same field or related field:
I was lucky enough to work on a kids radio show with one of New York’s premiere fun science guys, Steve “The Dirtmeister” Tomecek who first showed me that science can be really fun (http://www.dirtmeister.com/). One of my greatest bubble inspirations came after seeing Melody Yang performing in the Gazillion Bubble Show. She opened my eyes to the pure joy and artistry of bubbles (http://gazillionbubbleshow.com/). Rhode Island-based bubbler extraordinaire Keith Johnson does a fantastic bubble science show. I have learned so much from watching videos of him online (http://bubbleartist.weebly.com/).
What is the best advice anyone has ever given you? Or what is your "mantra" / words to live by?
I studied business as an undergrad. On the last day of the semester, my Sales professor said to me “Chris--you’re a great kid, you’re smart, you’re a hard worker...just promise me something: Don’t ever go into sales.” That really stuck with me and after graduating I immediately ran towards the warm glow of non-profit administration. Now that I’m selling myself as Bubbledad I get why I would have sucked at sales back then: I never had anything I was passionate enough about like bubbles and teaching.
As moms, the day can escape us, what is your best time-saving trick?
Pajamas, Pa-SCHMAMAS! After bathtime I put my sons to bed in a clean shirt & underwear for the next day. The next morning you’re half way there (assuming there were no accidents!)