Hope's Playground offers fresh atmosphere for kids needing therapy

  • Occupational therapist Heather VanDevelde opened Hope's Playground Pediatric Therapy Inc. in Antioch.

      Occupational therapist Heather VanDevelde opened Hope's Playground Pediatric Therapy Inc. in Antioch. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

Published9/7/2007 12:19 AM

Antioch is home to a new therapy center designed for children and teenagers.

Hope's Playground Pediatric Therapy Inc. opened about a month ago at 311 W. Depot St., Suite F.


Heather VanDevelde, an occupational therapist, is the owner of the bright new therapy center that serves infants to 18-year-olds.

Three therapists join VanDevelde in working with children with various diagnoses, including cerebral palsy, autism, Down syndrome, developmental delay and sensory processing disorder.

VanDevelde has been a therapist for the past eight years working in private practice and in the school system.

Her new clinic focuses on speech, physical and occupational therapies.

Physical therapy works with areas including gross motor skills, walking, running, climbing and orthotics. Speech therapy includes articulation, augmentative communications, feeding and swallowing, VanDevelde said.

Occupational therapy involves fine motor skills, handwriting, eating, dressing, throwing a ball, health skills and visual motor and visual perceptual skills.

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VanDevelde, 33, always knew she wanted to work with children. She studied psychology and then earned a master's degree in occupational therapy.

The therapy center features bright colors and a wall painted to look like a chalkboard. "It's a fun place where kids still get what they need," said the Michigan native.

"We want to help as many kids as we can," she added.

She accepts several insurance plans and is in the Blue Cross Blue Shield network.

For more information, call (847) 838-8085.

Just a buck: Dollar Tree recently opened in Vernon Hills. The nearly 12,000-square-foot store is at 250 Hawthorne Village Commons on Route 60.

Consumers can expect to find a variety of seasonal and specialty items, food and snacks, health and beauty care necessities, office supplies, toys and more.

Retail statistics show that 69 percent of all U.S. households shop dollar stores.

Five decades of cars: Top officials from the automotive industry recently made their way to Grayslake.


Ed Pepper, general manager of Chevrolet and Steve Hill, the north central region manager for General Motors, recently celebrated with the owners of Rockenbach Chevrolet.

Doug Rockenbach has operated the growing dealership for the past 50 years. The family-owned business has operated for 86 years.

New location: Ginger's Gift Gallery celebrates its grand reopening with a ribbon cutting on Sept. 28 with the St. Charles Chamber of Commerce.

The business, which has been in business for 16 years in St. Charles at various locations, is now at 1980 W. Main St., next to Starbucks.

During the grand reopening, visiting artist Jim Flood from Bovano Glass Enameled Sculptures will bring a trunk show and sign pieces. Gift bags will be given to the first 100 visitors and guests will be entered into a drawing. Light refreshments will be served.

The shop is open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays. The Web site is www.gingersglassart.com.

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