Just as Germany laid claim to the World Cup in soccer last week, Mt. Juliet’s David Heimbach made major announcements about bubble ball soccer coming to Wilson County.
It didn’t actually just arrive. It opened in May. But, the fun it’s creating among old and young alike is spectacular. Where it opened as Bubble Ball Soccer, new games and ideas are cropping up everyday, and people are having a ball trying out every one of them.
The object of the bubble is that it takes you back to the founding days of the old bumper cars, slamming into your friends and even people you didn’t know, because you couldn’t do that in any other type of game. Those are still around and attract newcomers and oldsters to this day.
But, the cool thing about the bubble balls, is Heimbach brings them for whatever function, party, anniversary, fundraiser, fair or festival. People can ask for two or 10, which really gets exciting when there are that many rolling and bouncing around.
“I had heard about the bubble soccer balls because they got really popular in Australia and all over Europe,” said Heimbach, “so I got to checking them out. They weren’t exactly a small investment, but I thought they would really go over in this country, and nobody was doing anything like it in Tennessee or anywhere around here. I decided to take the gamble and have been having a ball myself. My wife, Jodie, and I have four teenagers, and they all get it on with the balls every chance they get.
“Starting in May, the first two bubble parties we staged were graduation parties. Don’t you know, those kids had a literal ball. We’ve booked so many events since then.”
Heimbach said his pastor, Carl Strange, at New Heart Christian Church in Lebanon, booked an event at their church, where they played soccer for a while, but then the elders in the church got into a match with the teenagers.
“The kids need to be at least 12 years old to don the balls, but some kids are big for their age and some are smaller,” Heimbach said. “The same with adults, but with these bubbles, the smaller individuals can knock the bigger ones for a loop and get a kick out of it, because no one gets hurt, and it builds egos and smoothes-out frustrations. Every one just has a ball, no pun intended.”
Heimbach said he brings 10 balls and a referee to every event they book. An event can run two, four or six hours, and they start at $250.
“The hours do not include any blowing-up time. They are all actual playtime,” he said.
Heimbach was born and raised in Mt. Juliet, graduating from Mt. Juliet High School in 1988. No college for him. He didn’t get into why not, whether money was a factor or he just didn’t know what he wanted to do at that time or had no desire to go. In his case, it didn’t seem to matter when he just said, “I worked for a while in a Coke bottling facility and a food processing plant. Then, I became an independent contractor doing home additions and commercial maintenance.”
During that time, Heimbach lived back and forth between Nashville and Mt. Juliet. Then, about 22 years ago, he did two things. In 1998, he got into the entertainment business when he and a partner, Scot Dunlop, founded Fadd’s Nashville Party Bus Co.
“The Fadd’s stands for Friends Against Drunk Drivers,” said Heimbach. “The concept was to get your group out on the town, but get you home safely afterward. The bus company is still going strong today and has nine buses running. However, I got into so many things; Scot has that company now.”
Next, he met a young lady named Jodie at a line-dancing club. She was from Michigan but went to nursing school at Cumberland University. After dating for a year and a half, he and Jodie were married in 2004. They proceeded to have Kayla 17 years ago who’s now a senior at Wilson Central High School and 15 years ago had triplets, Kassidy, Mason and Dawson, who are currently freshmen at Wilson Central and all are big advocates of bubble ball.
The triplets were born premature, only weighing in at a few ounces each more than 1 pound.
“Jodie was the stay-at-home mom when the kids were small, and I got out and worked. Today, she is a career woman and nurse manager at Centennial Medical Center who’s thinking about going back to school to teach. When I got out of the bus business, I bought this house we’re now in, and I can conduct all the business I do from my home office here and be here to get the kids off to school, be here when they get home, etc. I’m loving it, being the stay-at-home dad, the time I get to spend with them and everything.”
Even before the bubble balls, Heimbach booked more than 200 dates a year for his mobile disc jockey entertainment unit, where he does weddings, proms, corporate events, casino parties, family reunions, picnics and “all that kind of fun stuff with all kinds of lighting, décor and audio visual effects.” He said he did 75 weddings last year and is the largest prom entertainer in Nashville area, doing 17 proms last year, including Watertown High School. Those dates take him all over, some out of state. For instance, last week he was booked for an event in Chicago. He took the family with him since Jodie has relatives there. They had to immediately return to Tennessee, though, because Heimbach was due to do another event in another direction right away.
He was researching new ideas for corporate picnics when he came across the information on the bubble balls.
“When fall arrives, we have plans for all kinds of fundraisers, etc. like teachers against students, principals against teachers and lots of others,’ he said.
When they do get to do things that aren’t related to the business, Heimbach said the family likes to go to the beach, but mostly they stay pretty close to home because they have a pool and a great place to grill out and all the fun stuff around the house.
“I like to fish and hunt, but none of my kids like it. I guess I failed as a dad in that area,” he said.
“I was raised Catholic but dropped out of the church many years ago. Pastor Strange got me started back when he started the church 10 years ago. I’m so glad he did. The whole family loves the church, so activities at the New Heart Christian Church take considerable time. We do travel to places like Texas to visit other family members and such.”
Check out Heimbach at faddsentertainment.com or bubbleballnashville.com. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org or he can be reached by calling 615-444-6835 or 615-478-4991.