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Celebrating the Spirit of PEPS

Group leaders, board members, volunteers, guest speakers, sponsors and supporters gathered Friday, May 12 in the beautiful Panoramic Room at Pacific Tower, a location of FareStart in Seattle for a celebration to recognize our many volunteers and supporters and to honor the 2016 Spirit of PEPS Award recipients. The Spirit of PEPS Award was created in 2011 in honor of outgoing Board member/volunteer, Cliff Meyer, and is given annually to those who have truly gone above and beyond in giving back to PEPS.

PEPS is pleased to present the 2016 Spirit of PEPS Award recipients

aka Casper Babypants

Chris Ballewyou’ve been sittin on this rock for a year now
circling the big bright yellow sun
and your father and your mother
love you like no other
love you like you’re the only one (yes yes)
they love you like you’re the only one
because its true

These lovely lyrics and zillions more are on the dozen+ albums for kids that Seattle-native Chris Ballew has produced as yellow-shirted Caspar Babypants. Chris’s songs can be funny, silly, energizing, or “super duper mellow” - and often very Pacific Northwest (like Hold Fast Baby Barnacle and Fiddlehead Fern). He performs all around the region for kids and parents.

Chris’s kids were PEPS babies. Early on, he supported PEPS with the gift of music. That’s why he is a Spirit of PEPS Award Winner – his creative support of PEPS and his love of music and sharing it with toddlers and preschoolers are just tons of fun.

Parents like Caspar Babypants too. And, of course, lots of parents are fans of Chris’s band for grownups, The Presidents of the United States of America.

In a 2015 interview with Guitar World, Chris said, “I actually did not set out to play for families. I wanted to get this certain vibe going in my music that was simple and innocent and drew upon older traditions than rock and roll but also mixed in modern ideas.”

Wikipedia says that Ballew's “first brush with children's music came in 2002, when he recorded and donated an album of traditional children's songs to the nonprofit Program for Early Parent Support titled "PEPS Sing A Long!" (Yes, PEPS is mentioned in Wikipedia!) That album continues to support PEPS families and is now offered as a free download to groups.


Christine RobertsChristine is founder of Nurturing Pathways, a creative dance program providing comprehensive development for babies to four years. Nurturing Pathways combines movement and dance brain development in early childhood.

Christine has been speaking to PEPS group since at least 2007. She and her staff of trained instructors volunteer to give presentations to PEPS in the greater Seattle area on movement and how movement, play, and touch are important to child development.

Christine’s classes show parents how to use movement in play. Parents learn new ways to have fun and enjoy dancing with their babies and that those activates support brain development. Christine has been a leader in her field and offers workshops to early childhood teachers and others who work with children on how to use movement to support sensory and motor development.

PEPS is honoring Christine this year with a Spirit of PEPS Award for her contributions as a frequent guest speaker. Christine has shared her knowledge and engaged parents and babies in movement activities at countless PEPS Groups.


In recognition of more than 25 years of generous, dedicated and impactful investment in PEPS and their ongoing partnership and guidance, PEPS presents the Horizons Foundation with the 2016 Spirit of PEPS Donor Award.

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