Recreation for Adults with Autism

Recreation for Adults with Autism

Leisure and Activity Programs

AMITA Health Autism Spectrum and Developmental Disorders Resource Center
1786 Moon Lake Blvd. Suite 202, Hoffman Estates, IL 60169 

Twice monthly social group for teens and young adults that is free (currently virtual). Call email for more information.

 Arts of Life

Chicago Studio: 2010 W Carroll Ave. Chicago, IL 60612
(312) 829-2787
North Shore Studio: 1963 Johns Drive Glenview, IL 60025
(847) 486-0808

Provides creative art opportunities – see remote programming schedule here and become a studio artist application here.

Arlington Pediatric Therapy Management Services, Ltd.

Teen Dreams Bowling Club
Mary Beth Mayer
3105 N. Wilke Road, Suite H Arlington Heights, IL 60004-1450
(847) 255-8690, ext. 127

Bowling Club is for teens with special needs and offers a chance to meet new people, learn to bowl and have some fun. It's also a great way to escape the summer heat for a bit. They offer a variety of summer camps, call office for more information. 13 years and up.

Arlington Pediatric Therapy
Summer Social Skills Group

Mary Beth Mayer, MS, special educator
3105 N. Wilke Road Arlington Heights, IL 60004

This class is for high school age students/young adults who are struggling in the area of social skill development. It will provide an opportunity to learn about, talk about and practice various social skills. Discussion and role playing will be the emphasis of this class.

BDI Playhouse Children's Therapy

Two Locations:  

  • Aurora: 600 N. Commons Drive, Suite 102 Aurora, IL  60504 
  • Orland Park: 11411 W. 183rd Street. Suite B Orland Park 60467


We provide Occupational, Physical, and Speech Therapy along with Aquatic Therapy, Gait Clinic, Feeding Clinic, Casting and Bike Riding Lessons for kids and young adults (birth - 25).

Brickology - Legos

Beth Weis
(847) 494-5346

Team-building projects with Legos for children with autism spectrum disorder to promote social, emotional, cognitive, and motor enrichment.

Camp Millhouse

25600 Kelly Rd. South Bend, IN 46614

Inspiring self-discovery in individuals with special needs through a safe, traditional camp experience in both day program and overnight camp programs. Virtual camp programming available in light of COVID-19 concerns.

Camp Red Leaf

26710 W Nippersink Rd 
 Ingleside, IL 60041-8770


Week long youth (ages 9-17) and adult camp experiences are available at Camp Red Leaf throughout the summer months and weekend respite programs available throughout the year. Friendships blossom as campers choose between adaptable sports programs, arts and crafts, the ropes course and zip line, outdoor camping experiences, and lake and heated pool activities. With a camper counselor ratio of 2:1, experiences are as individualized as the campers themselves. Staff members adapt programming to reflect the varied levels, abilities, and needs of each camper while also creating a safe environment where campers are able to challenge themselves.

Center For Enriched Living: CEL

280 Saunders Road, Riverwoods, Illinois 60015

Choose from a wide variety of social, recreational and educational enrichment programs available seven days a week for people of all abilities – in-person and online virtually.

Chicago Park District - Special Needs Programming

Locations across Chicago
(312) 742-5798

Year long program, activities include: field trips, arts and crafts, games, sports and swimming

The Coalition for Autistic and ND Students (CANS)

1640 W. Roosevelt Road, Chicago, IL 60608

The Coalition for Autistic and ND Students (CANS) is a student-led community for autistic and neurodivergent college students in the Chicago-area. Students meet regularly to meet friends, share resources and participate in workshops, activities, and advocacy. All students who identify as autistic or neurodivergent, including those with Asperger's, intellectual disability, specific learning disability, psychiatric disabilities, or other ND conditions, and are current junior college, community college, undergraduate, graduate, or professional students are welcome. CANS meets on the fourth Friday of the month, 4-6 PM at DHSP (1640 W. Roosevelt Rd.).

The Field Museum - Field for All

1400 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60605
(312) 922-9410

Sensory Friendly “Field For All” & Sensory Saturdays: we want everyone to have a great time at the museum, so we strive to make our programs, exhibitions, and facilities accessible for everyone by removing barriers, delivering a welcoming and relevant experience, and providing opportunities for meaningful engagement. The Field Museum also hosts Sensory Saturdays where families enjoy a sensory-friendly morning in the Crown Family PlayLab once a month.

Glick Family Camp

Contact: Tamara Besser, LCSW
26710 W. Nippersink Ingleside, IL 60041
(773) 765-3159

Camp Red Leaf provides children diagnosed with developmental disabilities and their families an opportunity to relax, mingle with other families, and enjoy the outdoors on 181 acres of Illinois countryside.

Have Dreams

Dana Fenceroy
515 Busse Highway, Suite 150 Park Ridge, IL 60068
(847) 905-0702

After-school programs, day programs, and workplace training services are offered to those ages 16 months and older affected with Autism Spectrum Disorder, as well as diagnostic and family support services.

High Ridge YMCA Summer Camp

Contact: Amanda Goss or Dannica Williams
2424 W. Touhy Ave Chicago, IL 60645
(773) 262-8300

Activities include swimming, group games, arts and crafts, kick-ball, board games, field trips, and free play.


3210 Dundee Road Northbrook, IL 60062
(847) 205-0274

Jen Phillips, Chief Program Officer
Marni Sommerfield, Asst. Director of Recreation & Camp

With 18 day and overnight camp locations, Keshet has a camp program that fits nearly any interest, special need and background. We are proud to partner with JCC Chicago day and overnight camps, JCYS, Junior Gan Israel, Camp Nageela Midwest and Ramah Day Camp. Assistance is available for some families demonstrating financial need. For overnight camp, assistance is available for up to four weeks. 

Konick & Associates

3380 Lacrosse Lane, Ste. 106-107, Naperville, IL 60564
64 Orland Square Drive, Ste. 112, Orland Park, IL 60462

Provides compassionate child, adolescent, adult, family, and couples counseling with a focus on neurodiversity (autism, ADHD, and more). Other services include parent coaching, neuropsychological assessments for all ages, and a virtual game night for neurodiverse young adults 18+.

Little City - Adult Programs

1760 W. Algonquin Rd. Palatine, IL 60067

700 N Sacramento, Ste 201 Chicago, IL 60612
(773) 265-1539

We provide adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities with supports, programs and services that help increase their potential for lifelong productivity and success. Services include residential and employment, home-based supports, recreation and leisure programs.

Lincolnway Special Recreation Association

P.O. Box 547 Frankfort, IL 60423
(815) 464-2811

Special recreation cooperative.

Maine-Niles Association of Special Recreation 

6820 W. Depmster St. Morton Grove, IL 60053
(847) 966-5522

Special recreation cooperative.

Mann Park District Summer Day Camp 

Therapeutic Recreation Activities for Daily Living
13000 S. Carondolet Chicago, IL 60633
(773) 646-0301

Activities include: golfing, bowling ($6 extra per week), fishing at Wolf Lake, picnics, sports day, Special Olympics, field trips (e.g., Lincoln Park Zoo, camp activities, Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum, The Survive Alive House, Museum of Science and Industry, Nature Day, beach). Must bring your own lunch daily. Ages: 8 years and up.

Meetup: Social Group Adults on the Autism Spectrum DuPage County, IL

Social group for all adults 18+ on the autism spectrum (clinical diagnosis not necessary) and/or learning difficulties, social phobia and shyness. The goal is to get together and socialize with each other in a comfortable setting; the group plans dinners out, going to festivals and movies and just hanging out and meeting new people in and around the DuPage county area.

Network 1212 (currently virtual) for more information

Many of the Network 1212 events are hosted or begin in the community space of Project 1212. We provide a number of social outings and educational meetings within Chicago such as cooking classes, restaurant meetups, parties and in-house movie nights. Run by Urban Autism Solutions.

New Star 

Mike McNicholas - 

New Star’s Recreation Services are contracted through Special Recreation Services to provide assessment, planning, development, and facilitation of therapeutic recreation programs.  All programs are designed to meet the varied needs of persons with intellectual disabilities. Cooperative members of Special Recreation Services include the Calumet Memorial, Dolton, and  Riverdale Park Districts, as well as the Village of South Holland Department of Recreational Services. Programs provided by Special Recreation Services include Special Olympics, community-based therapeutic activities, leisure education, special events, day and overnight trips, sports, as well as, summer camps for children.

Northeast DuPage Special Recreation Association

1770 W. Centennial Place Addison, IL 60101
Phone: (630) 620-4500

Special recreation cooperative.

Northern Illinois Special Recreation Association (NISRA)

285 Memorial Drive Crystal Lake, IL 60014

NISRA provides year round recreation activities for people with disabilities in 13 communities in northern Illinois. Since 1976, children and adults of all ability levels have enjoyed socializing, building skills and having fun in hundreds of weekly programs, special events, camps and trips each year.

Northern Illinois Special Recreation Association

820 E. Terra Cotta, Suite 125 Crystal Lake, IL 60014
(815) 459-0737

Special recreation cooperative.

Northern Suburban Special Recreation Association

3105 MacArthur Northbrook, IL 60062
(847) 509-9400

Special recreation cooperative.

Northwest Special Recreation Association

3000 W. Central Road, Suite 205 Rolling Meadows, IL 60008
(847) 392-2848

Special recreation cooperative.

Oak Lawn Park District/Special Recreation Cooperative

4625 W. 110th St Oak Lawn, IL 60453
(708) 857-7614

Special recreation cooperative.

Opportunity House

357 N. California Street Sycamore, IL 
(815) 895-9840

Not-for-profit, provides job placement, supported employment, work services, developmental training, special olympics, recreation, residential living, and respite.

Options for College Success - Social Programs

Calendar of social events each month based on suggestions provided and agreed upon by the group. Everyone is allowed an opportunity to plan a social event to ensure broad variety (i.e. it's a movie, a concert, the beach, or a trip downtown, etc.). Each event is safely chaperoned by our on-staff Resident Advisers and we welcome people outside of our program to apply to join!  Open to non-students; Cost: $30/month + cost of activities

Project Onward

Bridgeport Art Center
1200 W. 35th St., 4th Floor. Chicago, IL 60609
(773) 940-2992

Provides creative art opportunities including the Project Onward studio program. See requirements and application here.

Piotrowski Park District Spring Camp

Therapeutic Recreation Activities for Daily Living
4247 West 31st St Chicago, IL 60623
(312) 745-4804

Activities include: swimming, sports, exercise, etc.

Ray Graham Association

901 Warrenville Road, Suite 500 Lisle, IL 60532

Works with people with disabilities to provide residential, life skills, life coaching, day program, employment, recreational and family support services.

River Valley Special Recreation Association

1335 E. Broadway Bradley, IL 60915
(815) 933-7336

Special recreation cooperative.

Rockford Park District

Therapeautic Recreation
401 S. Main St. Rockford, IL, 61101
(815) 987-1607

Programs based on sports and fitness, arts and leisure, and social acitivities are offered to promote the development, maintanence, and experssion of a meaningful leisure lifestyle to people with disabilities.


4500 Belmont Road Downers Grove, IL 60515
(630) 960-7600

Offers multiple day camps each summer to provide a structured environment in which to enjoy productive leisure activities.

Shedd Aquarium’s Calm Waters

1200 S Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605

Calm Waters is an exclusive event for guests with disabilities to explore Shedd Aquarium’s exhibits and experiences in a comfortable and accepting environment.

South Suburban Special Recreation Association

19910 80th Ave Tinley Park, IL 60487
(815) 806-0384

SSRA is a therapeutic recreation program organized to provide individuals with disabilities or special needs the opportunity to be involved in year-round recreation.

South West Special Recreation Association

12521 S. Kostner Ave Alsip, IL 60803
Phone: (708) 389-9423

Special recreation cooperative.

Special Camps

Corporate Mailing Address
26 W 684 Lindsey Ave. Winfield, Illinois 60190

Special Camps provides opportunities for children and adults with intellectual disabilities to experience new activities, form friendships, increase independence and self-esteem in 2-week long, loving, all volunteer run summer camps. With proper supervision by trained staff and 24-hour nursing, Special Camps is a safe overnight camp for intellectually disabled kids and adults who could otherwise not attend similar camp programs due to physical, medical or intellectual limitations.

Special Recreation Association of Central Lake County (SRACLC)

290 Oakwood Road Vernon Hills, IL 60061
(847) 816-4866

Special recreation cooperative that serves seven communities: Vernon Hills, Lake Zurich, Mundelein, Libertyville, Lincolnshire, Grayslake, and Hawthorn Woods. Provides programming for individuals, families, and SibShops for siblings of individuals with disabilities.  

Special Recreation Services of Northern Lake County (SRSNLC)

2200 E. Grass Lake Road Lindenhurst, IL 60046
(847) 356-6011

Special recreation cooperative.

Special Recreation Services (SRS)

1624 E. 154th St. Dolton, IL 60419
(708) 841-1071 ext. 233

Special recreation cooperative.

Stepping Up & Out (SUO - Aspiritech)

Highland Park, IL, and Chicago, IL or 312-945-8378.

SUO is a social program that meets on Sundays from Noon-5:00 PM in Highland Park and on Saturdays from 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM in Chicago, in addition to some weekday clubs from 3:30 - 5:30 PM. Programs are free, but RSVP's are required. Facebook page.

Northern Will County Special Recreation Association

10 Montrose Drive, Romeoville, IL 60446
(815) 407-1819

Special recreation cooperative.

Tuesday's Child Behavioral Summer Camp

c/o DePaul College Prep
3633 N. California Ave Chicago, IL 60618-4602
(773) 423-5055

This is a great opportunity for your child to receive behavioral support in a fun, peer-based environment.

Warren Special Recreation Association

100 S. Greenleaf Gurnee, IL 60031
(847) 244-6619

Special recreation cooperative.

Western DuPage Special Recreation Association (WDSRA)

116 N. Schmale Road Carol Stream, IL 60188
(630) 681-0962

Special recreation cooperative.

West Suburban Special Recreation Association

2915 Maple St. Franklin Park, IL 60131
(847) 455-2100

Special recreation cooperative.


Brooklyn Boulders - Adaptive Climbing Group

Adaptive Climbing Group
100 South Morgan Street Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 268-0002

Adaptive recreational activities good for individuals with physical, cognitive, and developmental disabilities.

Buddy Baseball of Buffalo Grove

Leslie Klassman
401 E. Aptakisic Road Buffalo Grove, IL 60089
(847) 630-4358

Two leagues each year for children with disabilites.

Center For Enriched Living (currently virtual)

Contact with questions.

Choose from a wide variety of social, recreational, and educational enrichment programs available seven days a week for people of all abilities – from teens to individual’s needs. 

Chicago Dance Therapy

Erica Hornthal
1516 Greenwood Ave Deerfield, IL 60015
(847) 848-0697

Dance therapy and counseling services provided by board-certified dance therapists and licensed clinical counselors.

Elk Grove Gymnastics School

775 Bonnie Lane Elk Grove Village, IL, 60007
(847) 437-3447

Services include: field trips, cheer tumbling, birthday parties, competitive gymnastics teams that will be played at Special Olympics functions, circus classes, and beginning/intermediate/advanced gymnastics classes.

(773) 575-5100

Application that can be purchased through the Apple or Google Play stores.  A user-friendly exercise app designed for individuals with autism. EB takes exercise, a source of frustration and failure, and turns it into an opportunity for success and confidence building. EB has four supporting research studies and is used by parents, professionals, therapists, and universities around the world.

Exercise Connection
(773) 575-5100

Services target neurodiverse people ages Kindergarten-Adulthood in the Chicagoland Area. Use exercise to successfully empower the autism and special needs community to build an active lifestyle and develop an up-and-coming workforce, resulting in many untold opportunities. Reach out for class and location information. 

Family Yoga at Campanelli YMCA

300 W. Wise Road Schaumburg, IL 60193
(847) 891-9622

A class designed to help participants build rapport and a basic understanding of yoga for the whole family; all participants do not have to be affected by autism.

Invincible Silent Warriors

Katie Grubba
1341 Manor Court Elgin, IL 60123
(224) 800-7265

Our program is designed to help children and young adults learn self-defense skills and socialization.