Metro-East News

Jump for joy: Millstadt family entertainment center offers bounce houses

A Jumping Joy is up and running at 749 W. Washington St. in Millstadt. The 4,000-square-foot facility is packed with bounce houses.
A Jumping Joy is up and running at 749 W. Washington St. in Millstadt. The 4,000-square-foot facility is packed with bounce houses. twall@bnd.com

Billed as an “inflatable fun center,” A Jumping Joy has been open since October at 749 W. Washington St. in Millstadt.

The 4,000-square-foot facility is packed full of bounce houses. One is shaped like a garage that houses a firetruck. Another is built to resemble an Old West town.

Owner Marie Frost of Arnold, Mo., said she chose the Millstadt location because she hated growing up in a small town with nothing to do.

Frost leases the building that sits across Washington Street from Lee’s Home Center.

See A Jumping Joy’s website or its Facebook page for more details, venue hours and special offers.

Keg’s tapped at Freeburg Liquor

The store has been open for about two months at 108 S. State St. It occupies what used to be a BP station and underwent a facelift before opening.

In the absence of gas pumps on the property, there’s plenty of parking.

Gorge yourself at Alton Restaurant Week

The 5th annual event began Friday and features 19 restaurants in Alton, Grafton, Godfrey and Brighton.

New this year to Restaurant Week is 4204 Main Street Brewing, the sister location of a popular Belleville brew pub that opened for business on East Center Drive in Alton last spring.

More information about the event, including a dining guide, is available at www.visitalton.com.

And if you go, keep your receipt. If you show it to someone at the Alton Visitor Center during Restaurant Week, they’ll give you a souvenir pint glass.

State to shutter East Alton unemployment office

That means the only other Illinois Department of Employment Security office in the metro-east is located at 4519 W. Main St. in Belleville.

Federal budget shortfalls and a new federal law are blamed for the closure, according to the Illinois Department of Central Management Services.

The next nearest IDES offices are in Carlinville and Mount Vernon.

Holiday retail sales didn’t meet expectations

Sales were up this season, just not as much as analysts had hoped.

Consumers spent $626.1 billion in November and December, a 3 percent jump over that period in 2014.

The National Retail Federation had hoped for a 3.7 percent increase. In 2014, holiday sales rose nearly 5 percent over the previous year.

The new guy

We were sad to see Will Buss leave the paper, but I’m excited at the chance to pick up where he left off as the business writer.

Any news, tips or suggestions you sent to Will, send to me at twall@bnd.com. Thanks.

Tobias Wall: 618-239-2501, @Wall_BND

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