Coronavirus: Stories of How Entrepreneurs in Cherokee County, GA are Adapting, Part 10
Story 10: Josh Neville, Airborne Canton, Canton, GA.
Airborne Canton is Georgia’s largest indoor trampoline and adventure park, located near the Etowah River Park in Canton, GA. Airborne started with a dream several years ago from Josh and Brooke Neville and after a long road and key partners, turned into a reality in 2018. Airborne offers more than 45,000 sq. feet of fun, adventure, and action. Whether you’re looking for active family entertainment, kids’ birthday party places, fun ideas for corporate events, or even a unique business meeting space, they are here to help.
1. How has the COVID-19 situation impacted your business recently?
We are closed. Unfortunately, we were not able to continue any services as people have to come into Airborne in large numbers. All of our staff are at home. However, we are talking with or landlord and we are not paying rent. They know we have zero income so they understand. We may add to the term for the time we are closed. We also negotiated with Georgia Power to get a low fixed rate and turned off outside lighting. Our SBA loan will be deferred for six months which is great. I have almost no payroll because we only pay staff when customers are in the building.
2. How have you and your business adapted to the situation?
All staff is home. However, I have been going to the park every day since we closed and started working on projects. I am building a bouldering/rock wall and adding on to our ninja course. We are working on a ton of projects to improve the park so that when it does open, we will have more things for people to do. We were also just approved to sell beer and wine so I am getting the parent room ready to accommodate that.
3. How have you prepared and led your team/employees?
I couldn’t really do this. 99% of my staff are in high school and are part-time employees. Once they knew it was coming, we all just went home. I have encouraged our team to get other jobs if they need cash right now. We want them back but know they need to pay bills.
4. What new things/perspectives (or old ones reinforced) have you learned about yourself, your business, and/or your community?
I am focused on one truth: God always provides and is in control. I have given all worries and cares to Him. I have all of the faith in the world that the world will come back to normal and we will be stronger on the other side.
5. How have you stayed focused and positive?
Because I have 100% confidence that we will come through this and be just fine. God is in control. Not the government or some virus. I also exercise every day. It helps my mind just as much or more as it does my body. We have a gym at Airborne and I use it a lot.
6. What are some encouraging thoughts or stories you have heard that have kept you grounded?
I did see articles on leaders of companies not taking salaries so they can pay workers. I love that. That’s what leaders are supposed to do. Sacrifice for the success of those you lead. Honestly, I am just self-motivated and lean on The Lord for all gifts and sustenance.
7. How can we as a community best support you during this tough time?
As we start to release pictures of our new features, we would love for people to connect and like our posts. Obviously we would love for our community to pray for us.
To learn more about Josh Neville and Airborne Canton, visit them at https://airbornecanton.com/ and on social media and YouTube.
Stay tuned for future stories as we continue to shed a light on local entrepreneurs. We hope you are inspired by these stories and motivated to patronize and support them together.
Have ideas, questions or stories? Reach out to us at cherokeega.org or emailing us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.