The SPARK! program at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center has provided creative, stimulating activities for seniors with memory loss while remaining free of charge.
Since 2010, The SPARK! program at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center has provided creative, stimulating activities for seniors with memory loss while remaining free of charge. SPARK! programs offer participants an opportunity to enhance their quality of life through social engagement, mental stimulation, and communication in a safe and comfortable atmosphere. Each program offers a unique mix of engagement-focused activities, like gallery tours, ballroom dancing, hands-on art-making workshops, attending world-class performances, and culinary therapy. We aim to help shift the focus from the deficiencies that are often associated with memory loss, Alzheimer’s disease, and related dementias to the rich and satisfying experiences that are possible through creative engagement.
The John Michael Kohler Arts Center is a founding member of the SPARK! Alliance, a group of cultural organizations committed to offering quality programming for people with memory loss. The main objective of the program is to provide a creative outlet for those living with Alzheimer’s disease; but one of the other results of the program is a supportive community and resources, not only for those affected by memory loss but for the caregivers as well. Isolation is a common occurrence for those living with memory loss. The Arts Center hopes to bring these secluded folks out and create moments to cherish.
To register for a session or for more information about SPARK!, contact the Arts Center at 920-458-6144 or email email@example.com. Participation is free for individual caregivers and participants.
The SPARK! program offers monthly experiences for adults with
memory loss to share with a friend, family member, or caregiver at no cost.
To register for a session or for more information about SPARK!, contact Jen Balge at 920-458-6144 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday, January 31
Board games have been shown to be a great way to stimulate the mind. Join us for this program with The GameBoard; we’ll be playing games designed to keep the brain active!
Wednesday, February 28
Bring your appetite to this SPARK! program. We’ll be sharing our favorite memories from the kitchen while we cook and eat a delicious meal with chef Marilyn Montemayor.
Wednesday, March 28
Let the music be your guide as we create paintings inspired by the melodies of your favorite tunes!
Wednesday, April 25
Go on a guided tour of the Unseen Forces exhibition series that explores the rich territories of belief, opinion, and fact in contemporary art. Then, get creative with a hands-on project.
Wednesday, May 23
Wear your dancing shoes! Ballroom dance instructor Sue Alby will lead us in movement that anyone can participate in. We’ll also have a live accordion player to add some extra fun to our polka steps!
Wednesday, June 27
Explore the beautiful gardens with an interactive tour and show off your green thumb by potting plants for our flower bed.
SPARK! programs at the Arts Center offer positive social and creative experiences for people living with memory loss that are not dependent on memory skills that are fading or impaired. Whether building a story, making art together, discussing a work of art in the galleries, singing, or dancing, the atmosphere is warm, welcoming, and stimulating. Conversation-based discussion of works of art encourages interaction and a positive exchange of ideas and observations and do not rely on recall. Art-making sessions encourage experimentation and playfulness and are often collaborative.
The Arts Center’s specially trained education staff and volunteers lead programs that emphasize the joy and creativity that can be found in the present moment, drawing on the strengths of the individuals, irrespective of their diagnosis. Programs are designed for individuals with early- to mid-stage Alzheimer’s disease or dementia and can be adapted to the needs of other types of senior groups.
Visits are available Monday through Friday, 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m., and can be customized to meet the needs of the group. Prices vary depending on the options selected.