Big Bounce, Teddy Connection set to close

Joshua Kellogg
Gordon DeSpain V, 1, plays at the Big Bounce on Wednesday at the Animas Valley Mall.

FARMINGTON – The Big Bounce and Teddy Connection business in the Animas Valley Mall will close next month after the owners decided to sell the business and retire.

Ron and Reida Baca announced last week on Big Bounce’s Facebook page they would be closing the children’s entertainment business on April 29.

Ron said the mall is ending its two-year contract early in order to move a new retailer into the space. The Bacas' contract started on Sept. 1, 2014, and was scheduled to end later this year, according to Ron.

“They ended our contract early," Ron said. "It was mutual. We are ready to retire, and they were ready to move someone in."

Jeff Ring, the mall's general manager, could not be reached for comment regarding which business would move into Big Bounce’s current location.

Big Bounce offers several inflatables for children to play on and a concession stand, and hosts birthday parties. Teddy Connection allows people to build and customize a teddy bear or other stuffed animals with clothing and accessories.

The Bacas said they’ve enjoyed operating the business, but they see the ending of the agreement as a sign to retire, stating they were not interested in moving the business again after relocating to the mall in September 2014.

Reida and Ron Baca plan on closing their businesses, Big Bounce and the Teddy Connection, on Wednesday at the Animas Valley Mall.

“At our age, we’re not ready to completely remodel a place again,” Ron said.

Big Bounce opened in September 2008 at 3050 E. 20th St., next to Hobby Lobby. The Teddy Connection opened in 2002 in the mall, then merged with Big Bounce in September 2008. The business currently has 10 part-time employees.

The closing of the business will leave a gap in the area, according to Audra Winters, the president of the Farmington Chamber of Commerce. Winters said Big Bounce provided entertainment for children and gave families an option to host birthday parties in a safe environment year round.

“I think the Big Bounce was a huge success,” Winters said. “I hope someone will purchase it and take it over.”

Mary Huff plays with her nephew, Daniel Gomez, 2, at the Big Bounce on Wednesday at the Animas Valley Mall.

The Bacas both said they were happy that Big Bounce and the Teddy Connection could provide an activity for children in the community.

“We’ve always loved kids, and there was nothing for kids to do in Farmington,” Reida said.

Several people have inquired about purchasing the business, Ron said. The Bacas hope to sell the business before it closes at the end of April.

Joshua Kellogg covers education for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627.