Spark is Coming to Downtown! Three Museums to Provide Memory Loss Programming

SPARK Image with Logo IISPARK! is coming to Appleton.  The SPARK! Alliance is a consortium of museums that provides cultural programming for people with memory loss.

Modeled on the successful “Meet Me at MoMA” program at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, the SPARK! Alliance began in 2010 with five cultural institutions in Wisconsin.  In the last few years, five others have joined with several more coming into the Alliance this year.

??????????Appleton represents a first for the SPARK! Alliance in that three museums are collaborating to provide a series of richly interactive programs for people with dementia and their care partners.  The History Museum at the Castle, the Building for Kids Children’s Museum, and The Trout Museum of Art will engage participants in multi-sensory exploration of objects in their collections, studio art engagement, and gallery discussions.

The collaboration of these three, local museums will allow participants to explore the fascinating story of life in our region through, discover our visual and performing arts culture, and work with professional artists to explore their own creativity.

Research conducted in New York City and at the original partner organizations of the SPARK! Alliance has shown the benefits of SPARK! participation for people with dementia and their care partners.  This is one more way that the Fox Valley region is creating a dementia-friendly community.

The three partners in the Appleton SPARK! program will alternate months when they provide programming.  The schedule of SPARK! programs can be found on The Trout Museum of Art website (  Registration for programs at all three venues can be made by calling The Trout Museum of Art at 920.733.4089.

Thanks to the generosity of the Helen Bader Foundation and the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, these programs are available free of charge.

Here’s a video about the Spark Program.

The SPARK! video from 371 Productions on Vimeo.


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There's so much to like about Downtown Appleton. Thanks to its 60+ distinctive shops ... 50+ casual, fine dining and ethnic restaurants... nearly 30 pubs, clubs and live music hot spots ... a leading performing arts center and world-class visual arts gallery ... family-friendly activities and attractions ... a variety of coffee shops and gathering places ... PLUS Northeast Wisconsin's best events, Downtown Appleton is a favorite destination for many -- and it just keeps getting better and better!

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