A District 117 transitional program continues to invite the public downtown for a cup of coffee, and maybe even a shirt or a book, especially for Jacksonville High School’s Homecoming this weekend.
The Crimson Cup located on the Northwest corner of the downtown square in Jacksonville is a coffee shop and store that is part of the District 117 Transitional Adult Program, or T.A.P.
T.A.P. Facilitator Bailey Brammeier says the Crimson Cup and Spirit Stop will be open this Saturday from 10 am to 3 pm for the JHS homecoming weekend. Normally the shop is open only during school days from 7:45 am to 1:00 pm on school days when students are present. Brammeier says both outlets have a little something for everyone.
“We have the Crimson Cup which is a grab-and-go coffee shop. Everything in the coffee shop is a suggested dollar donation. You can come in for a soda, you can come in for a coffee, an iced coffee, or water. You can take small little pre-wrapped bakery items for a dollar.
Then we also have the Spirit Stop which is a Crimsons spirit wear store that we also run simultaneously with the Crimson Cup. That’s in partnership with Amy Albers with the Jacksonville Public Schools Foundation and Rick Rolson of Outbreak Designs. We have apparel that is available only at our shop. It’s not for a specific sport or band it’s just Crimson apparel.”
The Transitional Adult Program allows students with I.E.P.’s or individualized education plans, to continue learning skills they need outside of school. Brammeier says these students are entitled to attend school through 22 years of age. She says T.A.P. helps them to build the skills they need for work and life.
“Many of them finish up their high school work and then they just still need help with functional life skills, vocational skills, all of those things. So we are an [age] 18 to 22 program for those kids who have finished up their high school work but are still wanting to be enrolled in school.
So we are working on all of that functional stuff. We are working on- can you live interdependently, can you be as independent as possible, do you have job skills, what kind of jobs are you looking for? We just kind of help kids explore where their strengths and weaknesses are so they can be as successful as possible after they leave the district.”
Brammeier says currently the Crimson Cup and Spirit Stop has a third business going this week as they are host to the Scholastic Book Fair. She says the fair is included at the shop and helps the students with even more job-related skills education.
The Crimson Cup and Spirit Stop reopened for business on August 23rd after not being able to open at all during the last school year due to COVID.
Brammeier says the shutdown forced some creative adjustments to the program because the store is such a big part of who they are. She says they are thrilled to be back, but the biggest thing the students need is the regular practice that only customers can provide.
“We would really like to reestablish our customer base. Things have gotten off to a very slow start and so having those regulars is a really fun way to get kids to practice and develop those relationships. So people coming in is the biggest help we could ask for.”
The Crimson Cup and Spirit Stop, featuring the Scholastic Book Fair is located between Lincoln Land Community College and the U.S. Post Office in downtown Jacksonville and is open 7:45 am to 1:00 pm during the week and 10:00 am to 3:00 pm this Saturday for Homecoming.