Sometimes an entrepreneurial enterprise starts off with bubble gum and soda pop.
Jordan Munsters was only 8 years old when he was purchasing those items from a local store to resell; however, that determination and ingenuity were only a sign of things to come later in life. Since 2018, Munsters has been giving residents of the region a much-needed rush of adrenaline and excitement as the president and CEO of High Caliber Karting and Entertainment. Located in the Meridian Mall, High Caliber offers everything under the sun needed to “punch boredom in the face,” from two indoor go-kart tracks, racing simulators and a full arcade to ax throwing, archery tag, and a bar and bistro.
Providing residents with an immersive entertainment experience is why High Caliber is the recipient of the 517 Magazine Publisher’s Award in the 2021 Greater Lansing Entrepreneurial Awards.
“Last year, I was lying in a hospital bed about a month after shutdown. I had shattered my hip socket and broken four vertebrae and three ribs,” Munsters said. “After 11 hours of surgery, I woke up to the surgeon telling me that there was a possibility I would not be able to walk again. In that moment I remember vividly thinking, ‘Screw you; I will run, and I will do it faster than I ever have before.’
“This award is a symbol of that single thought. The thought that anyone can have facing any adversity,” he continued. “While that accident and recovery had nothing to do with business, it happened during one of the most challenging times for businesses I will likely ever experience. It showed me that even when I am not capable to continue, the right mindset and being surrounded by the right people will make everything still run and survive even through the toughest times.”
High Caliber Karting started with an event hosted annually at Munsters’ home called “Day of Man.” The event grew each year and spawned the idea of an entertainment venue for adults. He and his wife cashed out their retirement funds as well as sold properties, vehicles and major assets while also refinancing their home to fund the project.
“The day we opened for business, we had $5 total in the bank and all credit cards maxed out. It was tight, but we made it work,” Munsters said.
In addition to High Caliber, Munsters also founded Combat Karting LCC, a software tech company that develops immersive entertainment offerings. Together with his team of “experience creators,” the staff at High Caliber and Combat Karting constantly push one another to improve and provide guests with a positive and joyful experience.
The dedication has paid off. A recent 25,000-square-foot expansion brought the total footprint of High Caliber to 105,000 square feet of fun. The expansion was a focus of the business throughout the pandemic shutdown, and it isn’t the last idea for forward momentum that Munsters has on his mind.
“Beyond that, my other company, Combat Karting, will be doing installations in two very popular entertainment centers in other states,” he said. “We will revolutionize karting and finally give people that desire to experience real-like ‘Mario Kart’ the opportunity to do it. That will likely fill the next year or so. After that, we have some additional ideas.”