Who We Are

Forty-seven years ago, Happy Joe Whitty opened the doors to his first store, “Happy Joe’s Pizza & Ice Cream” in the Village of East Davenport. Fast forward to today, and Happy Joe’s has become a Midwest landmark, with over 45 stores in seven states, and the story of Happy Joe Whitty has become a real-life tale of the American Dream in action.

In 1972, the year he first opened his doors to the public, Happy Joe made a vow that he would give back every year to the community that made his dream a reality. In December of 1972, Happy Joe hosted what would become the first of hundreds of Special Needs Parties for children in various communities. In 2019, at just one of Happy Joe’s annual Holiday Parties, the TaxSlayer Center in the Quad Cities welcomed nearly fifteen hundred children during the course of a two-day event.


Hand in Hand

Hand In Hand was created by local Quad City parents to serve children and young adults with special needs. In addition we support the families of these children so that they can be successful at work and at home. Today Hand In Hand offers summer camps, childcare, a bowling league, overnights and even a Girl Scout Troop among its many program choices.
In addition, information about community resources is also available to parents regarding various disability issues. Learn More

Handicapped Development Center

The Handicapped Development Center supports those people with disabilities at work, at home, and in the community.

At HDC’s workshop, people learn work skills and are provided with a place where they can experience the dignity of doing real work and the pride of earning a paycheck. They can also receive the support they need to find and maintain a job in the community.
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Read the story of Joe Whitty's life.

Read the story of Joe Whitty's life.

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Helping Kids with Special Needs Across America

Happy Joe’s Kids Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded by Happy Joe Whitty and his family to help meet the needs of special needs kids wherever they may be.

Support HJKF

Children’s Therapy Center of the Quad Cities

The Children’s Therapy Center offers medical rehabilitation therapy services to children with developmental disabilities and developmental delays.

Over the years, thousands of individuals and their families have benefited from our services – regardless of their ability to pay for the services. Now, with a focus on young children, the Children’s Therapy Center is a major service provider for children and families throughout Western Illinois and Southeastern Iowa. Learn More