How to Get Involved in a New Community
Moving brings quite a bit of change with it. Whether you’re moving across town or to a new city, you will be leaving the comforts of your established life and diving into everyday life in a new community. The excitement comes when you get to establish your new normal in the community you have moved to. This task can seem daunting – especially if kids are involved – but it is doable! There are a lot of “must dos” when settling into your new community – school registration if you have kids, address changes, finding new doctors, etc. Don’t get so tied up with all the chores that you forget to enjoy your new neighborhood. Here are 5 fun things you can do to explore your new community and find activities to get involved in.
1. Meet Your Neighbors!
This is the easiest way to begin to feel at home in your new community. Get out and introduce yourself to the people you now share a street or hallway with! Moving can feel like an isolating experience. When you’re all settled in and unpacked, you may find yourself sitting in your living room thinking now what? Meeting people in your new community will help you and your kids feel less alone in your new little corner of the world.
Knocking on strangers’ doors can be scary, but it’s worth it to be brave and put in the work to establish relationships with your neighbors. This is a great starting place because the people you meet will likely have recommendations for community activities or programs you can get involved with.
Neighbors are a great resource for information in your new community, so definitely start by introducing yourself to them. If you have kids, consider asking your neighbors if they will share their babysitters’ contact information. You’ll spend a lot of time exploring your new community with your kids, but you will likely also want a night out without the kiddos around, so having leads on possible babysitters will be helpful.
2. Visit the Local Library
Libraries are a dream for book lovers, but they offer much more than just reading material. Most libraries will have an announcement board where posters advertise library events as well as general activities in the community.
Some libraries host art classes, science workshops, sewing classes, and more. If you have kids, this can be a convenient way to find out about the opportunities available for them outside of their school. If you don’t have kids, you may find an event you are interested in for yourself or one that you would like to volunteer at. You never know what will be happening at your local library, so it is worth checking it out as you work to establish life in your new community.
3. Fitness Facilities
Is working out your thing? In your new community, make it a point to visit several of the local gyms to try them out and decide which one you like best.When you find one you like and begin to go regularly, you’ll soon realize the gym or sports club will start to feel like a little community for you. Whether you work out with a trainer, solo or attend classes, you will likely meet new people you can connect with–and connection is key when working to settle into a new community!
Don’t let moving be an excuse for not taking care of your health. If you like to work out, make it a priority, and meet new friends in the process. If you have kids, consider checking out the local YMCA. You can work out and your kids can have their own fun and meet new kids at the same time.
4. Nearby Parks and Outdoor Spaces
You don’t have to join a gym to work out or make workout buddies. If you’re a runner, get outside and run in the park. Or join a Zumba class in the park. Throw the football around and invite strangers to join in the fun. Take your kids on a picnic or go playground hopping until your kids have a new favorite place to play. The point here is to get out of your house and be in the community.
Whether it’s hiking or hammocking, just get outdoors and explore your new city. If nature isn’t your thing, get downtown and explore the city streets. You will likely stumble upon some fun places to explore if you set out with the mindset of just wandering for the sake of seeing your new city. As much as you are able, get outside and just be in your new community.
5. Social Clubs
Are you passionate about art? Films? Food? Coffee? Nowadays, there are clubs for just about everything–for kids and adults. Whatever your passion is, use that to fuel where you invest your energy in your new community. Find something that feeds your passions and you will begin to feel at home in your new community in no time. You can meet people with similar interests and make friends along the way.
Finding Belonging in Your New Community
You won’t start to feel at home in your new city or neighborhood if you do not work to establish your new “places.” Test out the parks, the libraries, the gyms, the coffee shops and local restaurants. It will take some intentional effort, but soon enough you will find the places you consider “yours.” You’ll be a regular in no time.