Playtime: Unplugged


Olly Olly Play Café
Address: 321 Park Ave., Glencoe IL 60022
Phone: (847) 835-2004
Contact: Lauren Yang
Tel.: 847-835-2004

Olly Olly Play Café Opens Doors to North Shore
Glencoe, IL—March 6, 2012—In an age where babies use iPhones and family members connect more with their laptops than with each other, the Olly Olly Play Café comes as a breath of fresh air. Glencoe’s new indoor play space provides a stimulating environment for children’s imaginations while strengthening family bonds.

Putting the Plugs Away
With the advent of week-long events like “TV Tune Out” and “Screenbreak”, owner Emi Kelsey became increasingly aware of the need of a space where children could find alternatives to electronics. “The whole idea is about imagination. Children sit in front of a screen and have everything said to them—I wanted them to create their own worlds,” said Kelsey.

Rather than be disheartened by the prevalence of gadget-wielding toddlers, Kelsey decided to provide an alternative by transforming the first floor of the North Shore School for the Arts (which she also owns) into a fantasy world for children. Practice studios became dress up and art rooms, the recital space became a cozy café—and an enormous, custom-made castle was built to stand at the entryway into fantasyland. To provide as many outlets for children as possible, Kelsey personally selected each of the hundreds of toys and that fill the play space to ensure its quality. Similarly, the dress-up room boasts an impressive collection of costumes and accessories to transform children into pirates, princesses, knights, ninjas, fairies and even dragons.

A Place to Learn and Play
The Olly Olly Play Café was inspired by the idea of bringing simplicity and creativity to children’s playtime. Kelsey believes that through play, children can battle the forces of evil, conquer their fears, define their identities and develop their sense of right and wrong. By stimulating children’s minds and encouraging them to think beyond what is obvious, or what is fed to them, children can be free to see the possibilities that are open to them.

“We’re creating an optimal space for children’s minds to expand, which has a value they can later use in life,” Kelsey said. “Through play,children can battle the forces of evil, conquer their fears, develop social skills and so much more.” Events like monthly Family Nites will encourage everyone in the family—from two-year-olds to grandparents—to play games, sing together or learn new skills. The Olly Olly Play Café will also host classes like Disney Song Class (for four to seven year olds) and Baby Signing (for adults) to further promote technology-free learning.

About the Olly Olly Play Café
With its cozy interior and countless ways to play, the Olly Olly Play Café is an ideal space for playdates, family outings, play groups,birthday parties and more. An impressive castle stands at the entrance to a number of rooms filled with games, toys, costumes, and even a pirate ship. Dress as an Elizabethan queen, delve into a book, “cook” up a meal or play your own music! The Café also offers classes and special events to encourage both children and adults to learn as they play. A number of delicious snack options are available, as well as coffee and other beverages for parents. The Olly Olly Play Café is located at 321 Park Ave. in Glencoe and is open 9:00 a.m. til 5:30p.m. Monday thru Friday and 10:00 a.m. til 3:00 p.m. on Saturdays.
If you’d like more information about the Olly Olly Play Café, or to
schedule an interview, please call Lauren Yang at (847) 835-2004 or
e-mail Lauren at


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