When Jen Zimmermann and Kristen Krumdiack purchased Launching Success from the previous owners in 2013, they knew exactly where they wanted to take the longtime teacher resource supply and toy store. And, as employees already, they also knew the previous owners wanted only to sell to someone who cared as much as they did about the business and the community.
“Our goal is to partner with families on the growth and success of their kids,” says Kristen. “We have a huge variety of things that can reach kids on an educational and imaginative level.”
As you enter the store, located just off the Meridian on Prince, you feel as though you’ve walked into an incredible world of books, toys and teacher resources that is expansive and colorful beyond what you see from the street.
“Probably the biggest change we’ve made was the logo,” Jen says. “We wanted our brand to really reflect the array of products and services we offer.”
From science-related projects like ant hills, volcano kits, math games and puzzles to Legos, costumes and board games, Launching Success has virtually everything from education-based books and toys to create that environment of learning through the imaginative play of children says Kristen.
“We have quality materials, games, and toys so kids can thrive,” Jen says as describes the vast array of items carried in the Launching Success store.
Jen, a former teacher, brings the educational and teaching knowledge and resource to Launching Success while Kristen, a CPA, focuses on the accounting and vendor relationships. Both women have that practical knowledge and passion necessary to complete this dynamic team.
“We have a great team,” says Jen. “We also hire students from the Education Program at Western Washington University. These students understand the education process, they know how to work with the various resources and they are learning to work with parents and kids.”
Kristen describes how the customer service skills learned at Launching Success help these employees and future teachers become better communicators with parents and in the classroom with students. Each member of their team provides a level of service that ensures that every person walking through the doors has the information they need and the right product for their child or even grandchild. Jen and Kristen, with enthusiasm and smiles, tell the stories of grandparents coming into the store looking for just the right item for their grandkids.
A long-time supporter and supplier of teaching resources and toys, Launching Success is also a great place for workshops, summer programs and even themed birthday parties for the kids in the community.
At a price of only $125 for an hour and a half hour party, Launching Success will plan, set up and clean up your child’s birthday party. All you have to do is bring the kids and the food.
“It’s a different type of party,” says Jen as she recalls the variety of themes they’ve created from arts and crafts to Lego themed parties. “We plan everything.”
The summer activities at Launching Success feature fun programs with arts and crafts. Create a stepping stone and shrinkable creations or try out a science lab and dinosaur excavation.
Launching Success helps families find the best resources and supplies. Jen explains they work hard to build relationships with all of their vendors. “They know who we are and we know them,” she says of the relationships they have cultivated.
Vendor relationships are important because it ensures a quality product delivered to their customers. “We stand by our products and the vendors we work with stand by their products,” Kristen says. “If something breaks, it will get fixed. As a parent, that’s important to me,” adds Jen.
Jen and Kristen describe their roles as community partners with various schools and other organizations supporting kids. Launching Success works to support the community through non-profit organizations focused on kids.
You’ll also see them at local teacher conferences as vendors and sponsors and even at a local school for Math Night with a booth and math games to entertain kids and parents.
Launching Success is more than a teacher resource store or a toy store. Launching Success, with an emphasis on the education, is truly a family partner in creating success for kids through imaginative play and exploration. Stop in to see all they have to offer children and teachers in our community.
133 Prince Avenue in Bellingham
Open Monday through Saturday from 9:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Sunday from 12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.