Meeting new people may feel daunting when you are a new parent, but the effort is worth it. Seven years ago, my son was three and playing with a new friend at Kalama Park. At one point, my son took my hand and led me over to his playmate’s mom to introduce us. I am happy to say she remains one of my closest friends. You never know when, or where, a life-long connection will be made. Here are some ways to establish new friendships for you and your child:
With the increase in online resources, reaching out to people with children has never been easier. Facebook has several well-established Maui-based parenting groups. Find nearby events by joining one of these groups or follow local schools and organizations on Instagram to learn of upcoming events.
Get out of the house and visit a popular park nearby. Keopuolani Park in Kahului or Giggle Hill in Haiku are great options. On the south side, both Kalama Park and South Maui Community Park are spacious with diverse options for any age. Kalama Park is not only a great park during the day, but there’s nighttime skating at the outdoor rink that will hopefully re-open when the County lifts restrictions.
The Pool or The Beach
I had great success meeting other moms at the public pool. We formed a weekly swim group with a couple of other families I had met from another playgroup. We are fortunate on Maui to have beautiful public pools to enjoy at no charge. With the uncertainty of the re-opening of pools, I’ve noticed parents are coordinating small meetups at the beach.
Mommy and Me Classes
Classes are ideal places for sharing struggles, getting parenting advice, or just hanging out with other parents. Options may have diminished, but the Pūlama Parent and Child class at Haleakalā Waldorf School is available in August for children aged 0-3. You can also find classes in the Calendar section of the magazine in your hands.
The days of raising young children are now behind me, but they are remembered more fondly because of the friends I made during that time—many of which are still in my life. The job of parenting can be so much easier, and more fun, when you have friends to share the experience.