Playin’ In the Streets!

  1. Updates

Chicago’s Active Transit Alliance hosted the first Open Streets on State Street event, where seven blocks of our famous "great street" were closed to traffic and transformed into an urban playground filled with activities for all ages.

There was a mobile skate park, a dunk tank, a chalk art street mural, yoga classes and break dancing demos, just to name a few! Playworks Chicago ran the recess area, where crowds of all ages played (and sometimes relearned how to play) four square.

Hundreds of passerbys got into the action! Kids and adults alike were excited to see four square at the event;  the kids were experts from practicing during their school recesses and got to show off their skills, and adults who had forgotten about their favorite playground game got to relive childhood memories! We even had a turkey stop by and play for a while! 

The goal is to have this be an annual event, and Playworks will be on hand each year to bring a healthy dose of playground games to the public. It’s a fun event for everyone, especially families, and we loved seeing adults playing one of our tried and true games!

More Updates


three people with Playworks shirts
three people with Playworks shirts

July 28, 2022

A year of social and emotional learning ›

“You can’t do SEL, trauma, or equity work without each other,” Jennette Claassen, Head of Evaluation, Playworks. As Playworks continued to progress on our equity journey, we explored a critical question: what are the intersections between play, social and emotional learning, physical activity, and trauma? A working group focused on this question decided, among other…

June 22, 2022

2022 Kickball Tournament ›

On Saturday, June 11, Playworks Illinois held our 9th Annual Kickball Tournament. The tournament was such a fun first event back after the COVID-19 pandemic. Our teams gave it their all, but ultimately there could be only one Golden Kickball Trophy winner. This year we had 4 teams including West Monroe Partners, Twelve Consulting Group,…

August 24, 2021

Playworks Founder Jill Vialet Publishes ‘Why Play Works’ ›

Play brings out the best in every kid. Over the course of 25 years since Jill Vialet founded Playworks, she and her colleagues, as well as researchers and play experts, have demonstrated precisely how and why play works to help kids learn and grow in the most positive and healthy ways. Jill gathered stories from people…