‘A domino effect of positivity’
The city of Calhoun’s Revolving Loan Program has proven positive for many local businesses since its inception over 30 years ago. Local business owner Lisa Holloman is one of the more recent entrepreneurs to benefit from the program. She’s operated the grooming service and pet supply store Pets R Us in Calhoun for the past 20 years, but recently, she had the urge to provide the community with another facility: an indoor play area for children.
Construction on the building for Jumping Jacks, as she plans to call it, will begin soon, and she hopes to occupy the space by June. It will be located adjacent to Pets R Us at the end of Kelly Court in Calhoun. The business will be named after her daughter, Heather Jackson, who will co-own it with her. The facility will actually be split down the middle with one side housing a dance studio.
Holloman bought the land, a 0.43-acre plot, recently and began looking for ways to fund her dream. She says she feels grateful for the opportunity to obtain a low-interest loan from the city where she’s lived and done business for so long.
Especially impactful, she says, was “the opportunity for a city that I’ve lived in my whole life to validate me. … It’s a very cool concept for sure.”
Holloman was initially worried about qualifying for money from the revolving loan fund since the play facility won’t actually be downtown, but she quickly realized her exact location didn’t matter.
“I qualified as much as anyone,” she says.
The revolving loan fund money will help her with the actual construction, and she plans for the facility to provide several jobs over the next decade.
She plans to have swings, slides and other things children can climb on as well as a host of developmentally-appropriate toys for kids ages 9 and under, such as kitchen and dress up sets. The facility will also be available for rent for parties and other events.
She hopes the concept of face-to-face play encourages kids and their parents to mingle.
“Social skills are a dying thing now,” she says. “To me, it’s just a domino effect of positivity.”