By Demi M. Cruz

MWR Marketing

Military families celebrated the Month of the Military Child with a giant inflatables party for all ages known as Bounce-A-Palooza April 22 at NAS Jacksonville.

April is designated as the Month of the Military Child, emphasizing the important role military children play in the armed forces community. The Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) Department's superhero and Earth Day-themed event proved to be a great time for everyone. 

MWR Community Recreation Director Tom Kubalewski stated, "The Month of the Military Child is a time to applaud military families and their children for the daily sacrifices they make and the challenges they overcome. This Bounce-A-Palooza event was a fun way to show our appreciation from on behalf of the NAS Jax MWR Department."

The Allegheny Rec Complex was filled with inflatable activities, such as multiple obstacle courses, Human Hamster Balls, Jacob's Ladder, Balloon Typhoon, Skee Ball, Mickey Park, Blue Angel Fighter Space Walk, Survivor Land, Ferris Wheel and even Bumper Cars.

Other activities included an arts and crafts station, E Z Photo Booth, Art-Z-Faces painting, balloon artists, a nature station that featured a Florida Kingsnake and a variety of games and competitions from DJ Justin of Jax Elite DJs. 

Slush drinks, snow cones and cotton candy were available for purchase, along with hamburgers, hot dogs, chips, cookies and other beverages.

The event was held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and received immediate positive feedback.

"This is our first event and we are enjoying ourselves having a great time; loving some good music," remarked Deshaundell Jones.

Along with her son, Jeremy, Jones made her way around the field stopping at every activity possible. Jones recently moved here from Key West, Florida and celebrated the Month of the Military Child with her son while her husband is currently deployed aboard USS Philippine Sea.

When asked about the best part of the event, Kubalewski said, "This year we incorporated the 'Tiny Tots' area which was for ages 0-5. They had their own bounce houses and their own play area which gave them an opportunity to have fun without the possibility of getting run over by some of the bigger kids. This is something we plan on incorporating at future events as well."

Representatives from Blue Star families and the NAS Jax Youth Activities Center also had booths with information and activities for patrons to enjoy. Also on-site were the Bounce-A-Palooza sponsors USAA and Vystar Credit Union.

Neither NAS Jacksonville, MWR nor Jax Air News or any part of the federal government, officially endorses any company or sponsor or their products or services.