Finding Your Village
Where do you find “mom friends?”
As kids, we had soccer practices, story times, and recess to make friends. However, as adults, there is no easy equivalent to make those connections.
The hardest part for many is where to start: we all need someone to ask advice, grab a coffee, or share a morning at the park with our kids, but where can we find other parents?
Parenting friendships provide an invaluable support system for parents and caregivers. From baby groups to kids open-play gatherings, check out these fun and casual playgroups for making new friends around Kalamazoo and growing that village.
Know of any other groups we may have missed? Make sure to leave a comment.
Parenting Groups Around Kalamazoo
MOPS Groups (Mothers of Preschooler)
MOPS is an international organization that is focused on mothers of young children, organized by local churches. MOPS sessions meet twice a month, providing free childcare while the moms meet separately.
Meetup.com hosts a large variety of groups: moms’ groups, play-date focused groups, caregiver resource forums and other varied interests. Each group has its own membership rules and attendance requirements. Contact the group’s organizer before applying if you have membership questions.
Portage Moms of Munchkins: Playdate focused group for moms of infants through preschoolers
Divorced Moms of Kalamazoo/Portage: Support group for local, divorced moms
Early Elementary Kzoo Homeschoolers: Group for homeschooling preschool through elementary-aged children
Facebook groups are typically large, informal groups that are discussion-focused and do not have attendance or participation requirements.
Hike It Baby Kalamazoo: Parent group focused on getting families outside together enjoying nature in a safe and supported way. They host at least one hike per week.
Kalamazoo Dads Group: Dads only group for discussions and playdates.
Kalamazoo La Leche League: Local chapter to virtually support breastfeeding moms.
Little Adventurers’ Club- Kalamazoo Area: This group organizes hikes, playdates, story times and library visits. Little Adventurers is open to families with children of all ages and promotes early literacy and a life-long love of reading.
Zoo Mama: Moms only group focused on parenting advice, local recommendations, and other parenting-related discussions.
Other Parenting Groups
Baby Talk | Oshtemo Library | 7265 W Main St, Kalamazoo | 269-341-7521
Parents of infants up to one-year-old can network with other infant parents and get breastfeeding support. The group meets weekly and is led by a registered nurse. Free.
Toddler Talk | Oshtemo Library | 7265 W Main St, Kalamazoo | 269-341-7521
Toddlers aged 1-3 can play while parents meet on a weekly basis. The group is led by a registered nurse and includes story time monthly with a librarian. Free.
KRESA Community Playgroups | Kalamazoo Regional Educational Service Agency (KRESA) West Campus | 4606 Croyden Ave, Kalamazoo | 269-250-9649
Small groups of parents and children (infants through preschoolers) meet with a parent educator and participate in fun activities on Mondays and Wednesdays. Free.
Otsego Preschool Playgroup | First Baptist Church | 247 E. Allegan St, Otsego | 269-694-4160
Informal group of caregivers of small children who meet on Thursday mornings from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM. Cold weather meetings are in the church’s gym; the warm weather meetings take place at local playgrounds.
Pathfinder M.O.M.s (Moms on a Mission) | Pathfinder Church | 8740 S. Westnedge Ave, Portage | 269-327-6761
Group for moms of children of all ages to promote faith, love, and friendship. This group meets the third Tuesday of every month at 9:15 AM and 6:00 PM.
Playtime at The Point | The Point Community Center | 2595 North 10th St, Kalamazoo | 269-350-5496
Toddler Playtime is children aged 0-5 to play and meet new friends. The gym includes toys, slides, balls and ride-on toys. Program runs on Monday and Wednesday mornings from 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM. Free.
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