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Last night, I found myself in one of the more awkward situations that I've been placed in since starting this site back in 2011. I'd actually written this review right away last night and revisited it today prior to posting, half-considering saying nothing at all. But I have to...

As a writer and reviewer (my first review published way back in 1992... a full 22 years ago), the hope is that you'll be impressed and be able to share a great experience with your readers. Sadly, sometimes that's just not the case, and that's when my own brutal honesty comes into play. I'll always be honest, and I'll never sugar-coat it. In the world that I work in, sometimes certain people have a problem with that (advertisers, PR folks - and only a small fraction of them), and I'm fine with that. When tasked with writing about a live event or a "place" - especially one geared toward families - the scope and emotion are a little bit different than when I deal with an album, a movie, or a toy. It's the culmination of various elements that come together to create that "experience" - and there's many forces at play (human forces) that can tip the table in sometimes unexpected directions. I don't want to come on here and tell you that we had a less-than-stellar experience at a local business... but if I told you that it was without major issues, it would be completely dishonest. What I witnessed last night at JUMP AMERICA (880 Lakeside Drive, Gurnee, IL 60031) is an operation that could be great, but was sadly plagued by a shocking level of disorganization, customer service issues, and rampant poor user experiences... mainly for parents. But my kids LOVED it.