Party rental companies offer more than tables and tents
Who we talked to
Steve Rhea, co-owner
A Moon Jump 4-U Party Rental
5109 W. Lake St., Melrose Park
Irene Cohen, owner
Amazing Party Productions
680 Broadview Ave., Highland
Chris Wright, co-owner
House of Rental
5115 Church St., Skokie
Three party rental companies jumped at the chance to share why the perfect tent, chairs, table linens and even a bounce house can make or break your next big event.
What services do you offer?
Steve Rhea: "We offer 168 styles and themes of inflatable rides, like moon jumps and water rides. We offer full event coordinating. We also have an arrangement with Sweet Baby Ray's for catering. We now offer games and tables for casino nights."
Irene Cohen: "We work with all kinds of entertainers, from circus-type acts to magicians and caricature artists. We provide event-planning services. I work with catering companies, and we can arrange with other companies to provide larger items."
Chris Wright: "We rent everything from glassware and linens to equipment for larger productions that require power, stage lighting, flooring and heating."
How do you charge?
Rhea: "Our party packages and all of our equipment are based on daily rentals."
Cohen: "For the most part, we charge by the hour. For entertainers, it depends on how long they perform. For inflatables, we'll charge for three hours."
Wright: "Our rates are based on a 24-hour rental period per item, but you can have the equipment for up to four days."
Is setup and takedown included in the cost? Can people save money by doing it themselves?
Rhea: "Our price includes the delivery, setup and pickup. For safety purposes, we set up our products to make sure that it is done correctly."
Cohen: "They're included in the cost. As for people saving money by doing it themselves, it depends on the party and whether they really have the means to do it themselves."
Wright: "Some items can be charged separately if you want to set them up yourself. And if you pick it up yourself, you can save on delivery fees of $50 to $100."
How far in advance should people call?
Rhea: "About three to four weeks ahead. Sometimes people will call the day before, and we'll accommodate them if we have the equipment available."
Cohen: "In the summer, if they need a tent and it's a holiday, call three weeks to a month ahead. For just an entertainer, call at least two weeks ahead."
Wright: "You'd want to call two weeks ahead, but we do take orders until the truck leaves. We do the best we can to accommodate people."
Do you offer refunds for last-minute cancellations due to weather?
Rhea: "Deposits are refundable due to weather. But after a delivery is made and it starts raining, there will not be any refunds. Up until the point of delivery, deposits are fully refundable."
Cohen: "In some situations it's up to them to have accommodations available indoors. If they're renting a bounce house and call us in the morning, we can offer a refund. Once we set it up and it rains, they still have to pay."
Wright: "There are nonrefundable deposits on some equipment, if it is to be delivered. We can make some accommodations for weather, but overall we stick with our policy."
What's the funniest or oddest rental request you've had?
Rhea: "Someone had a birthday party for her dog. The neighbors all came with their pets. They had a dog-shaped moon jump called the 'Brown Dog.'"
Cohen: "I did have someone ask me one time if a performer playing Batman could fly down the stairs."
Wright: "We'll have rentals for 300 rollaway beds to the airport when they have delays or cancellations. We've had requests for tents on skyscraper rooftops."