September 2021 Programs and Events

We’re happy to be holding in-person programs again and hope you’ll join us for your favorite program soon!

 Due to the recent mandate in Illinois, all participants over the age of 2 regardless of vaccination status must wear a maskAt this time, second parents and siblings are asked to not attend. We know masks are difficult for some of our friends but GiGi’s is also a great place to practice! A COVID-19 questionnaire will be completed at the entrance of the Playhouse.

**The link to the website calendar is at the end of this post. You will find all RSVP/Registration information on the calendar.**

Local Group Programs

Music/Drumming (13+)

Begins September 8th 

Join certified Music Therapist Lydia from the Quad Cities Music Therapy Center for a 4-week session of music and drumming.

The program will meet on 4 Wednesdays in a row beginning on September 8th and ending on September 29th.

There are many benefits with drumming as it is a:

  • therapeutic tool
  • confidence builder
  • self-expression outlet
  • fitness and fun activities

Two and Under

Saturday, September 11th from 9 am – 9:30 am 

Must register by noon on September 10th!

The perfect place to meet new friends, learn and grow, while parents have the opportunity to socialize and network with one another.

Recommended for ages prenatal to 2 years old.

LMNOP: Language, Music N’ Our Peeps (0-3 years)

Age is a suggestion, we encourage all that are interested under the age of 5 to attend.

Saturday, September 11th at 9:30 am – Must register by noon on September 10th!

There will be individual bags of instruments for each participant, so no sharing of items will take place. We will also be using the parachute to help with social distancing!

LMNOP is an interactive and engaging program for children age newborn to 3 years old. It guides parents and young children through learning basic sign language and other forms of communication using music and language-based activities.

LMNOP supports the therapeutic-based development of young children with Down syndrome with goals of achieving the following:

  • Introduce and practice the use of basic signs/gestures/pictures to support language development.
  • Increase language development, with a focus on vocabulary development, following basic directions, and social interaction with peers using music, stories, and play.

Art Explosion (All Ages)

Thursday, September 16th from 10 am – 12 pm OR 5:30 – 7:00 pm

Must register by noon on September 15th!

Art explosion provides hands-on experience with multiple art media and provides an outlet for individuals with Down syndrome to express themselves, build confidence, and socialize with peers. On this date, we will be creating items for the upcoming gala.

Playhouse Pals & Kids Club (5-12 years)

Saturday, September 25th from 10 am – 11 am 

Must register by noon on September 24th!

Join us for a visit to Shaddy Knoll for pumpkin picking and more!

Supports the development of social skills and language through peer-to-peer interaction in a casual and fun setting. These programs also support gross motor skills through active games, as well as fine motor skills & self-help skills. Recommended for 5-12-year-olds.

Teen Tastic & Fantastic Friends (12+)

Friday, September 10th and September 24th from 6-8 PM. 

September 10th– Karaoke Dance Party – Must register by noon on September 9th!

September 24th – Board Game Night– Must register by noon on September 23rd!

Teen Tastic promotes friendship, social interactions, communication through a variety of social activities, outings, and games for teens.  Recommended for all teens ages 13-17. Participants in Teen Tastic gain confidence, leadership skills, and empowerment while working as part of a team or on individual projects and tasks.  If you, or your child, are looking for opportunities to socialize, practice your leadership skills, and be a part of amazing creative projects, then Teen Tastic is the right group for you!

Fantastic Friends is an interactive and engaging program recommended for adults ages 18 and up. This program is built to include adults with Down syndrome and those without Down syndrome. We support the development of social skills and language through peer-to-peer interaction in a casual and fun setting. Adult participants participate in the planning of activities so that everything the group does is based on interests. During Fantastic Friends, the group may explore their local community by participating in outings and events. This program may also support gross motor skills through active games.

Teen Tastic & Fantastic Friends supports the therapeutic-based development of individuals with Down syndrome. Our goals include achieving the following:

  • Social skills increase, with a focus on group participation and increasing leisure activity options.
  • language development increase, with a focus on appropriateness, maintaining conversation, and non-verbal social language.
  • Increase gross motor skills, with a focus on general health, fitness (strength and balance), and awareness of personal space.
  • Increase fine motor skills & self-help skills through participation in various activities.

GiGiFIT Teen & Adult

Saturdays beginning July 31st through October. (Registration for this program has closed.)

This program is meeting at Revive Cafe & Wellness Center in East Moline.

GiGiFIT Introduces the key movements (MMPT Principles) of foundational exercises, hip strengthening exercises, and vestibular/balance exercises.
The goal of this program is to:
  • Provide individuals with Down syndrome with a road map for purposeful, specific, and successful movement across their lifetime!
  • Improve Physical Therapy Goals: Strength, Endurance, Joint Stability, Balance, Coordination, Sequencing, Independent Practice, Lifetime of Participation
  • Improve Fitness: Strength, Endurance, Power, Stamina
  • Improve Balance and Coordination: Joint Stability, Posture, Movement Controls.

Local One-on-One Programs

Applications for the fall 2021 Tutoring & Speech Session are now closed!

Tutoring is for 2.5 years and up. Speech is for all ages.

Applications for spring 2022 will open in mid-December.


Special Events

October 1st GiGi’s Playhouse Quad Cities turns 10 years old!

Stay tuned for special announcements and news for ways to celebrate with us.


October 9th GiGi’s “i have a Voice” Gala

We’ll be celebrating 10 years of supporting voices here in the Quad Cities!

Registration is now open. Check here to learn more!


**Visit the calendar linked here to see additional details and to register to attend programming.

If you register for a program, please do everything in your power to attend. We know things come up and life happens, but please keep in mind that our volunteers have taken the time to plan, coordinate, and be here for the program plus funds have been allocated for materials and supplies based on the number of registrations. They (and we) are super sad when you don’t attend.


Volunteer at GiGi’s

New Volunteer Orientation

GiGi’s is a volunteer-run organization. New volunteers must attend an orientation to learn more about GiGi’s, Down syndrome, and the volunteer process. Come learn about all of the GiGi’s Playhouse programs and events and how you can get involved.

With over 3,900 volunteer hours at GiGi’s Playhouse Quad Cities in 2019, we cannot do what we do without our amazing volunteers and we make training a priority!

Our National Office is offering a virtual orientation on September 7th at 5 pm.  Click HERE to register. 

Local In-Person Orientation is scheduled for September 18th at 8:30 am. Click HERE to register. 

If you have not completed the Volunteer Interest Form via our website yet, please do so prior to attending the orientation. 

Tutor Training/Meeting

Thursday, September 9th at 5:30 pm

Our current tutors will be meeting to discuss their on-demand tutor training and more!

If you’re a Fall 2021 Tutor, please RSVP to attend this meeting by clicking here.

GiGi’s At Home Programs

GiGi’s at Home offers live virtual programs and programs on demand with participants from around the world!  Yes, around the WORLD!

GiGi’s at Home On Demand is our way of bringing 150+ purposeful programs to you at a time that is convenient for you. You will have access to program recordings, lesson plans, and activities to use when you are ready.

GiGi’s at Home Live is our way of bringing 28+ purposeful programs to you every week at a specific time. This allows you to interact with our volunteer program leaders and fellow participants engaging in purposeful activities designed for your loved one’s age group.

Visit the GiGi’s At Home Calendar to see what’s being offered and register to attend. 

Did you get the September Newsletter?

If not, sign up here.

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