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GiGi’s Playhouse Madison gets moving, raises awareness for Down syndrome

Updated: Jun. 5, 2021 at 5:09 PM CDT
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MONONA, Wis. (WMTV) - The nonprofit GiGi’s Playhouse is working to bring awareness for Down syndrome through a first-of-its-kind event.

At Ahuska Park in Monona Saturday, the Madison chapter organized activities for families to get moving.

Site manager Kelly Antonson said “movement” had two meanings for the organization. “It’s not only a social movement, meaning we want to get as many people pledging their commitment to acceptance,” she said. “But it’s also a physical movement to make sure that our bodies are healthy because people with Down syndrome have low muscle tone, and being able to build those muscles helps them lead a better and more fulfilling life.”

Antonson said the chapter serves about 300 families around the area. By also inviting members of the public who don’t have Down syndrome, Antonson said, “You’re able to see that you’re more alike than different.”

Volunteer Maya Greengus, who has Down syndrome, said, “[We’re] capable, intelligent, imaginative. We’re really cool people, and it’s a great way to spread so much fun.”

Antonson also said the field day also raised funds, which bring free programs to local families.

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