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Celebrating Local Businesses During Hispanic Heritage Month: Bounce on Me Inc. and Spatola’s Party Rental

Q&A with Jose Rosenbaum, owner of Bounce on Me Inc. and Spatola’s Party Rental

September 2021

Jose Rosenbaum is the owner of Bounce on Me Inc. and Spatola’s Party Rental. In business for nearly 10 years, Bounce on Me offers a variety of carnival games and inflatable structures. Spatola’s Party Rental provides necessities for party and event planning, including tents, tables, chairs, and more. For more information, go to or call Jose at 585.469.7073.

What inspired you to want to be a business owner in Rochester? And how did you get started?

I was a mailman and looking for business opportunities because I wanted to do something besides work for somebody else. I saw on Craigslist that somebody was renting bounce houses—and I thought it was a good idea—so I decided to buy some and rent them out. I started with seven bounce houses and then I grew in three years to about 25. I realized it was something people want, and they were running out.

In a matter of three years, I was looking for trucks. A guy from Flower City Party Rentals was selling his. He had 10 bounce houses, as well, but I didn’t have tents at the time. I said, “Well, maybe we can partner up or I can take over.” So that opened a whole entire door to a new business involving tents and bounce houses. That’s when I found out what ESL was, and I developed a business relationship and friendship with Mark Wolcott. About a year later, Spatola Party Rentals was up for sale and Mark called me and asked if I was interested, which I was. That’s when he and I bought out Spatola Party Rentals with the help of ESL.

“You don't know what you have until you go out on faith and move forward. Sometimes a door will open up.”

I tell people, “In seven years, we had seven trucks with seven figures, without having any clue.” You don’t know what you have until you go out on faith and move forward. Sometimes a door will open up. It’s spiraled to the point where we’re at now. In the beginning, we had part-time workers that just worked a seasonal job—about five or six guys. Now in the summer, I have about 30-40 guys and a 26,000-square-foot warehouse. Soon it will be 10 years since we started the bounce house business. But now it’s become tents, tables, and chairs. It’s kind of exploded.

Please elaborate on your passion and mission.

I like to say “Open doors, open mind.” Don't let anything hold you back. It was just figuring out what was my niche and trying to figure out what I was good at. I’ve always had it in me, so that’s what started everything. I don’t know if it was a matter of wanting to … I think being a leader is just a thing you’re born with. The biggest story is having nothing and making something out of nothing, and basically motivating yourself to do things that you’ve probably never thought you would do.

Do you have mentors or sources of inspiration and any guidance that has helped you along the way?

Not really. I think when you get into business, it can be a lonely world. At times, there’s no competition besides yourself. We have friends and we talk business here and there, but mentors … not really a lot. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial heart, and my mind can’t stop thinking. I’m always going on, and I don’t have anybody that is leading, directing or encouraging me. The inspiration came from inside of myself.

 'Be open-minded, stay balanced, and keep moving forward, becuase you can accomplish anything.' - Jose Rosenbaum

What does it mean to you being a Hispanic business owner?

I never look at race. To me, I’ve grown up having nothing. I lived in the city and basically wasn’t given any silver spoon. It was just hard work. But I don’t look at a race as being an underachiever or an overachiever. I think it’s the person themself. I think anybody can succeed regardless of what race and what background you have. I’m half-white, half-Hispanic, and I don’t even know Spanish. My dad was Spanish, but my mother is white … and I have all colors—white, black, and Spanish—in my family. So we never look at a color. We just look at the person.

What key impacts have you and your business made so far?

We’ve done a lot of fundraisers and we’ve helped a lot of churches out. I would say we definitely bring a smile to the party. When you have a bounce house, kids love it. The nice thing about this business is that we set everything up and everybody enjoys it. It’s nice to provide that service for churches or nonprofit organizations, or even for a small family to have a great party. Every event is different. We’ll set up a kid’s event and then set up a cancer-walk event. We make events successful. There are certain customers that use us all the time. The people we build relationships with are very appreciative.

What obstacles have you faced as a business owner and how have you overcome them?

You just push through. The past year has probably been the most challenging, with not having labor, not having the right people in the right spots. I think the biggest challenge as a boss is trying to figure out who’s good at what and then trying to help them succeed to make the business better. The biggest hurdle is the business within itself. I always think in life, you can overcome anything if you figure it out, so we tried everything. We have some great employees that stepped it up this year, due to COVID and unemployment. We worked with half our crew and still did what we’ve done before COVID, so our success has to do with a lot of our guys stepping up and doing their part. I think they do that because of the work environment. We make it fun and enjoyable. We show them the big picture of what we do. And they get paid very well, so that’s a motivation, too.

What have you learned from your experience as a business owner?

Every year there’s always some way to better yourself—in a sense of learning how to manage, how to handle issues with people. And then, too, how to maintain a balanced personal and business life. That’s what I’ve learned and tried to help more in this past year. Anxiety and stress can be a part of business with any owner, but it’s about learning how to deal with the difficulties and trying to keep it balanced. It’s about trying not to let it bother you too much, where it doesn’t affect the employees or affect the business.

“For anybody in business, the key is having the right people and building each other.”

What do you hope to achieve next?

I’ve got five or six different kinds of business plans in mind, so I think whatever comes our way. We just keep open-minded. Doing more and being better at what we do can only be better for the future. As we grow this business, I would say it’s basically building the right team. For anybody in business, that’s the key: having the right people and building each other. I think you’re better with people around you than by yourself.

What advice can you give to other entrepreneurs and business owners, particularly Hispanic people who are looking to start their own business?

I would say be open-minded, stay balanced and keep moving forward. Because you can accomplish anything. I really do believe that we limit ourselves. We go in with doubt or we go in with fear. A lot of times, our fear eliminates our dreams. So if we know our dream can become reality, then we live this life to the fullest. You only have one life, so why not try it? And if you’re young, then you have opportunities to make mistakes. If you’re older, then you just get to be wiser.