Pilar Johnson owner of Frolic Play Space re-imagined an indoor play space for children under seven after visiting an indoor play area with her young daughter. Pilar states, “There really was not a lot of places that I felt like I could take her, be free for a little bit and get a little break which was back when I first said I should really do this”. At that moment, Pilar came up with the idea for an indoor play space specifically for children under seven that gets “back to the basics”. There are no electronics at this play space so the kids play with different stations, do a lot of pretend play, and play with others.
Frolic Play Space is an interactive play space where parents go with their children for playtime and a chance to meet other parents. Pilar states, “With our life getting so busy now with computers and phones sometimes, people forget we need that human connection with other people and with our own children so this gives that opportunity. Of course, there are parents who need to work and there is opportunity for them here as well.”
Frolic Play Space stayed an idea until recently when Pilar felt, “I was in a place where it felt like you have to take some risks if you really want to get out of the same loop.” She was tired of working in an office and wanted a more flexible schedule to spend time with her daughter. Pilar then reached out to the North Metro Denver SBDC about her idea to see how she could make it a reality.
After becoming a SBDC client Pilar stated, “[My SBDC Consultant] really broke it up into steps for me and took the more overwhelming parts to even smaller steps especially writing a business plan. I had all of the ideas in my head and everything was there, but it was necessary to put it on paper and he guided me along the way one-step at a time. I had a very tight deadline from the beginning of what I wanted to accomplish and I pretty much met my deadline only a few months late, but in retro spec it wasn’t that far off. ” Pilar opened Frolic Play Space in August 2017 and is still at a stage where they are trying to spread the word about their business.
Pilar talked about how the biggest challenge was finding a location for her play space she said, “Having a new concept, new business, and never having owned my own business before it was hard to convince people even with a business plan. They still did not want to take the risk and “waste the space” on something they did not understand. [Frolic Play Space] is a new concept in the area, not a lot of people have done things like this before, and there was a lot of convincing and lot of visually explaining for what I was trying to create.” Eight months after her first meeting with an SBDC consultant Pilar opened Frolic Place Space and could not be happier, “It is really a happy job – you can’t put it any other way. There is not that many jobs you can do that you can say hey I made people happy today. There is nothing like that.”