When Brandon and Caroline Kimball were in Wilmington, North Carolina, visiting with friends last summer, they ran into a common problem for parents — no spur-of-the-moment child care for their two young kids.
“One of the people we were with said, ‘Take them to Giggles,’” Brandon said. “Caroline asked, ‘Can we just drop them off? Do we need an appointment?’ Our friends couldn’t believe we didn’t already have something like Giggles in Greenville.”
After experiencing the unique childcare center firsthand, the Kimballs are now set to open a Giggles Drop-in Childcare in Greenville. The first 4,000-square-foot location in Lewis Plaza on Augusta Street will open in late October, and a second location in the I-85/Pelham Road area is planned for early 2018.
The Greenville location will be the first in the state for the North Carolina-based child care franchise, which provides drop-in child care services at hourly rates for children ages 1 to 12. No advance notice or appintment is required, Brandon said.
The center will feature a large indoor treehouse, movie theater, basketball goal, air hockey, monkey bars, slides, Nintendo Wii and other kid-friendly activities. Craft workshops, music lessons and yoga classes will also be offered.
“As parents, we saw a huge opportunity for this concept in Greenville,” he said. “The whole concept is on-demand, drop-off child care. You can drop your kids off for an hour, three hours, or up to all day. It’s really built around flexibility and parents who need temporary child care, but you can also register for normal child care, too, if that’s what you need.”
Giggles will be open 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 8:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 1 to 7 p.m. Sundays. As parents to a 1 and 5 year old, the Kimballs understand the importance of safety and structure, so they’ve hired an experienced director to oversee a staff of about 15 caregivers, all of whom must be CPR certified and pass background checks.
The child care center will also be regulated and licensed by the Department of Social Services, Brandon said, and parents will have access to cameras placed throughout the center.
“We have an app parents can use to access cameras that will be in the center, so they can literally watch their kids live the whole time they are there if they like,” he said. “The main point about this whole concept is that kids can have a really fun time in an incredibly safe environment. It’s a lot more fun than your typical child care. Children are separated by age and provided with age-appropriate activities, which might be structured learning or playtime inside our indoor treehouse.”
He said maximum occupancy is 60 kids, and there will be at least four caregivers on staff at all times. After-school activities will also be offered along with summer camps. Rates are $11 per hour per child or $15 per hour for two children. Brandon said there will be many options to buy hours in bulk and also unlimited monthly memberships that will lower that cost.
“If you want to drop your kids off for an hour so you can go grocery shopping, this is a perfect idea,” he said. “If you want to go out for a date night, this is a perfect idea. There are a million reasons Giggles is a good fit for parents.”
You can go
Giggles Drop-in Childcare is located at Lewis Plaza on Augusta Street in Greenville. Call 864-907-2324 or visit www.gigglesdaycareinc.com to learn more.