Having a baby or small child can often feel isolating and having fellow parents to join you on your journey can be one of the most helpful and beneficial things to do for a parent. Some groups are designed for children, to find friends and have play dates. Other groups are focused on supporting the parents through question and answer sessions or mom’s nights.
Whatever you are looking for, there is sure to be one in the area that fits your lifestyle and your location. Groups are changing and new groups are forming on a regular basis, so check back here and keep your ears open!
MOPS Groups (Mothers of Preschoolers)
These groups meet around town at various locations in churches. They caters to the needs of the mother with young children. They usually meet twice a month and provide childcare while meet separately with other moms and participate in planned activities.
Meetup.com is a great place to find a playgroup or a mom’s support group in the Kalamazoo, Portage, and Battle Creek area. Depending on the focus of the group, there may be playdates with the kids and field trips, or mom breakfasts and mom’s nights. Some focus on smaller group sizes, some on specific age groups, and some are groups designed for parents with certain interests. Each group varies on the size and membership limit, so check with the individual organizer for details.
Other Parenting Groups
Baby Talk – Moms (and dads) with infants up to one year old can network with other parents and share the joys and trials of caring for a new baby. This group supports breastfeeding and provides an opportunity to share parenting information with other parents. They meet every Tuesday afternoon at the Kalamazoo Public Library – Oshtemo Branch.
Toddler Talk is for caregivers with toddlers 1 to 3 years old. Toddlers play together while parents and caregivers share the joys and challenges of parenting a toddler. This group meets in the community room of the Osthemo Branch of the Kalamazoo Public Library every Wednesday morning.
Mini-Montessori Playgroup meets when school is in session at a play date for kids and parents alike! Our Richland campus is hosting this FREE and Open to the Public program for our 18 month – 2 year, 9 month community: babies to toddlers, moms and dads, all are welcome! No registration is needed. Currently not meeting and resumes in January.
KRESA Playgroup consists of small groups of parents with their babies to preschoolers and a parent educator. Each playgroup is filled with fun activities. They meet during the day at Kalamazoo RESA’s West Campus location and local elementary schools. Call 250-9640 for questions.
Thursday Morning Play Gym at Haven Church is for children ages 1-5 and their favorite adult (grandparents, sitters, aunts & uncles, etc). Older and younger siblings may attend if they agree to be helpers and not a distraction. The cost is $10.00 for each 5 week session. Additional children in the same family are half price. Play Gym is a fun-filled play group where your young child can bond with other children through songs, storytime, games, and other fun activities.
Pathfinder M.O.M.s (Moms on a Mission)– Whether you’re the mother of a 2-month old, a 22-year old, or a GRANDmom, we invite you to a place designed just for you where you can become the best mom you can be. At M.O.M. you’ll enjoy a community where you will be encouraged through faith, love, friendship and be able to rely on the support of other mothers just like you. We meet the third Tuesday of every month. Meetings are at 6pm with a light dinner served.
Kalamazoo Dads- We are an inclusive group open to all dads. It doesn’t matter if you are balancing your career with raising your kids, are married, a single father or if you are a full-time stay at home dad. We don’t care if you’re a new dad or an old pro. If you’re a dad you are welcome to join us.
Hike It Baby Kalamazoo -Hike it Baby is a parent group focused on getting families outside together enjoying nature in a safe and supported way. Our number one rule is to LEAVE NO HIKER BEHIND. If you have a blow out, need to feed your baby/child, have a fussy toddler, we are here for you. We have all been there, or are there now, or know it’s coming. They host at least one hike per week.
Otsego Preschool Playgroup– We are an informal group of parents and caregivers of young children who meet up to chat and drink coffee or tea provided by the playgroup while our kids play indoors during the chilly weather or local playgrounds during the warm months. We meet every Thursday morning from 9:00 to 11:00 in the Gym of First Baptist Church of Otsego/Otsego Christian Academy unless otherwise noted on our facebook page. Occasionally we put together special events and outings. October is the start of our cool weather schedule.
Also, check Facebook for ideas for various groups around the area such as: Nights and Weekends Children’s Playgroup – Kalamazoo or La Leche League of Greater Kalamazoo.
If you are aware of any other groups not on this list, please email us at jill@KZOOkids.com