Chris and Jennifer Mannering ditched their day jobs to get their indoor children's party-and-play business up and running last spring.
On Monday, Manasota SCORE honored the owners of Bounce Down Under as its Clients of the Year, a highlight of the group's awards luncheon.
The local group — composed almost completely of volunteers with business experience — ended 2013 with 300 active clients.
SCORE, which formerly stood for the Service Corps of Retired Executives, includes all kinds of successful managers and entrepreneurs who act as mentors to aspiring business owners like the Mannerings. SCORE counselors listen to their business plans and make suggestions aimed at giving the proposals a better chance for success.
The Manasota SCORE chapter, one of the oldest of the 328 nationwide, will celebrate its 50th anniversary next year.
The chapter has more than 50 volunteer members who run the workshops and provide free mentoring to clients who get serious about joining the ranks of the self-employed.
Also honored Monday were several SCORE volunteers who have put in a lot of time as volunteers, including Greg Hoffman, King Barnard and Jerry Chautin, a Herald-Tribune columnist.