Metro-East Living

This new $1 million day care is coming to Freeburg this summer


It didn’t take long for word to spread about a new, tech-savvy day care that's coming to Freeburg.

Located at 605 N. State St., Imagination Station Early Childhood Development Center isn’t open yet, but the day care already has more than 50 children enrolled.

“We’re really excited,” co-owner Kyle Hawkins said. “We think it will be a good thing for the community. It’s been well received already.”

The new $1 million facility, which is expected to open in August, will be equipped with Apple TV technology. This will make it easy for teachers to add interactive lessons to the curriculum, Hawkins said.

Imagination Station is the second day care Hawkins has developed. He built Five Star Learning Center in Troy, too.

Hawkins, the father of two from Belleville, is also responsible for several residential developments in the region, including Trails Edge Townhomes in Maryville.

The opening of Imagination Station will come nearly a year after Lighthouse Learning Center closed in Freeburg. After 11 years, the day care on South Alton Street closed with its owner calling the building "a money pit."

Owner Mary Kay Prader said the 175-year-old building on South Alton Street had about 50 children when it closed.

The new 7,050-square-foot day care in Freeburg will be able to accommodate about 100 children, Hawkins said.

In addition to tech-savvy classrooms, the day care will feature a custom kitchen, allowing the program to make its own meals. There will also be a 3,000-square-foot playground with rubber mulch.

Looking for more information? Email the center at or call co-owner Angela Kimmle at 618-974-9541.