After I had my first child, I found myself feeling down, isolated and in need of some friendships with other adults. A friend of mine who moves every two years suggested that I look for some local parent and moms’ groups. I welcomed her her suggestion and found some great local groups and it changed everything! From battling the baby blues, postpartum depression or, general loneliness, to helping ease the transition of a move, finding your tribe can greatly increase your quality of life!
Little Lake County has complied a list of local groups and specialty groups for you to explore:
Parenting Groups in Lake County
Mothers of Preschoolers (MOPS)
An international organization striving to meet the needs of every mom with children infants to Kindergarten, (and some programs have a MOMS next program for moms with children in first through twelfth grade) whether they stay-at-home, work away from the home, or are a teen, single or married. They seek to provide an open and caring atmosphere for mothers to share their experiences through discussion, teaching, and creative activities. The popular MOPPETS program provides childcare for members while moms attend meetings. Lake County is home to several MOPS groups which are chartered through local faith-based organizations. Meetings are usually mornings, from September through May, with some scheduled summer activities. Costs vary from program to program.
Local Lake County MOPS chapters include:
1st and 3rd Tuesdays, NorthBridge Church, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., 41625 Deep Lake Rd., Antioch
1st, 2nd and 3rd Thursdays 9:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. Christ Church Crossroads, 1350 Illinois Route 137, Grayslake
1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month, 9:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m., The Chapel, 25270 Illinois Route 60, Grayslake
1st and 3rd Thursdays of the month 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., Immanuel Church, 2300 N. Dilleys Rd., Gurnee
2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., Immanuel Church, 2300 N. Dilleys Rd., Gurnee
- Lake Forest
1st, 2nd and 3rd Wednesday of every month 9;15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m., Christ Church, 100 Waukegan Rd., Lake Forest
- Lake Zurich
1st and 3rd Thursdays 9:00 a.m. – 11:15 a.m., Alpine Chapel 23153 W. Miller Rd., Lake Zurich
2nd and 4th Tuesdays 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., Heritage Church, 255 N. Quentin Rd., Lake Zurich
2nd and 4th Tuesdays 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., Heritage Church, 255 N. Quentin Rd., Lake Zurich
1st and 3rd Fridays, 8:45 a.m. -11:10 a.m., CrossLife Evangelical Free Church, 431 W. Austin Ave., Libertyville
- Round Lake Beach
2nd and 4th Tuesdays 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., Heritage Church, 2007 Civic Center Way, Round Lake Beach
MOMS Club of Gurnee (Moms Offering Moms Support)
Second Wednesday of every month, Gurnee (check with organizers for exact location).
Founded in 2002, a non-religious moms’ group with monthly meetings held on the second Wednesday of every month. Activities range from playgroups, fundraising, book clubs, and moms’ nights out. Services include newsletters and the Helping Hands program which delivers meals to members who have recently had a baby or are otherwise in need of assistance. Fees are $25 per year. For more information, contact them at email@example.com.
The Libertyville Moms Meetup
Libertyville (check with organizers for exact location).
A group of Libertyville-area mothers with small children (mostly age five and younger) seeking friendship, support, and advice. This group has members in Libertyville and all surrounding suburbs. This active group hosts events such as playdates, picnics, beach days, crafts, moms’ nights out and more. Every month there is a new mom meet up so that you can try it out.There is an annual fee of $12/year due 30 days after joining. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Moms of the North Shore Meetup
Glenview (check with organizers for exact location).
Welcoming any young-at-heart mom who lives on the North Shore (Evanston, Wilmette, Highland Park, Glenview, Skokie, Northbrook, Winnetka, Kenilworth, Glencoe and Lake Forest and Deerfield areas) and has the time and desire to actively participate in our group. The ages of children range from 0-5 and there are many active outings to choose from.
Moms 4 Moms
Moms 4 Moms supports moms in: Lake Villa, Antioch, Lindenhurst, Fox Lake, and the surrounding areas. They are a nonprofit group designed to provide unconditional support through experiences, friendship and knowledge to moms who choose to focus on raising their children either full-time or part-time. Through activities Moms 4 Moms offers a community where moms and kids can make friends, find fun activities and participate in community service projects . Play dates and other activities are planned continuously for children of all ages. There is a annual fee of $20. The first playdate is free to try. For more information about the group contact the group here.
Ela Area Neighbors
Ela Area Neighbors is a social club and mothers group/parents group for residents in Lake Zurich, Deer Park, Hawthorn Woods, Barrington, Long Grove and Kildeer. Membership is not limited based on location. Most of our events are held in the Ela Township area. Annual social events include a bunco night, monthly books club, yearly holiday party, ladies night out, wine tasting and more. Annual dies are $30. To join an event, contact them at email@example.com.
Lakeside Moms and Tots
Based in Lake Zurich, it welcomes families from all of its surrounding towns. The mission of Lakeside Moms and Tots is to provide a social outlet for mothers, their children, and families through a range of activities giving members an opportunity to meet new people, share ideas and have fun. They ask that all their members be moms, but caregivers, grandparents and dads are welcome to attend events. Membership dues vary based on your participation level, but are no more than $30 per year. See Maureen’s write up about them earlier this year.
Surviving Motherhood 1 & 2
Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital, Lake Forest
New mothers and their babies are invited to Surviving Motherhood 1 & 2 to share and learn coping strategies. Topics include infant feedings, sleep patterns, changing family relationships and other areas of concern. “Surviving Motherhood 1” is for mothers of babies two weeks to six months old. “Surviving Motherhood 2” is for mothers of babies six to 18 months old. Register after the birth of your baby. This free class is for any mother of a new baby looking for support or wishing to network with other mothers. For more information or to join this group, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 847.535.6182.
Look What We Can Do & Look What We Can Do Two
Advocate Condell Hospital, Libertyville
Free for first 12 classes if you delivered at Advocate Condell; $20 for a 12-class punch card after that.
Look What We Can Do is designed for parents and their infants from newborn through age 1 to attend together, this class focuses on a different topic of interest to new parents each week. Look What We Can Do Two is designed for parents of toddlers aged 1-2 years of age. Participants of both groups will learn creative and stimulating ways to play with their baby. This is a great opportunity to connect and share advice with other parents going through the same experiences. Breastfeeding support is available upon request. Registration is not required. For more information, call 847-990-5407.
Special Interest Organizations
La Leche League of Central Lake County
Meets on the 3rd Wednesday of the month at 10:00 a.m. in Lake Villa (location varies).
La Leche League of Libertyville
Meets on the 3rd Wednesday of the month at 7:00 p.m. at 1500 Lake St., Mundelein.
For over 50 years, La Leche League has been committed to providing education, information, support, and encouragement to women who want to breastfeed. Monthly meetings discussing breastfeeding topics are held by trained and accredited La Leche League Leaders. Mothers, mothers-to-be, and children are always welcome.
Moms Run This Town
Moms RUN This Town (MRTT) is a running club for moms with kids of any age (newborn to adult children) to support and motivate you in your running journey. It doesn’t matter if you are a walker or a runner, or someone who has never raced before or a marathoner. There is a local chapter, Far North Suburban Chicago Moms Run this Town, and you can join them on their Facebook page or on their website to find a local run meetup, ask questions and interact with the community.
Lake County Mothers of Twins
Meets on the 4th Tuesday of every month at 440 Barron Blvd., Grayslake.
A supportive group for parents of twins and other multiples, they meet once a month at 6:30pm on the 4th Tuesday of every month at the Grayslake Middle School. They offer many informative events as well as hold resale events to help make parenting more affordable and raise money for their activities. For more information you can email email@example.com.
Moms with Kids of Special Needs Meetup
Just created this year, this meetup group based out of Vernon Hills is a social group for moms with children who have special needs. The founder acknowledges the extra challenges and rewards of having a family member with special needs, especially when it comes to building friendships. The goals of the group are to schedule play dates and connect with other mothers with kiddos who have special needs; and to schedule moms’ nights out where we leave our sweet tiny humans and comfy sweatpants at home. If you’re looking for a supportive, friendly group of moms to open up to about your days, while meeting for fun activities with your kids (and sometimes without), this is the group for you! Recent events have included sensory friendly movie outing, group outing to Antioch’s Taste of Summer and moms only nights out
Lake County Attachment Parents
A local group of moms with a mission to educate and support all parents in raising secure, joyful, and empathetic children and create a more compassionate world. There are no fees to join, and anyone who practices attachment parenting or would like to learn more is welcome to join. Join them on their Facebook Group.
Babywearing International of Lake County
Meets on the 3rd Wednesday of every month at 7:00 p.m. at Cygnus Lactation Services, 1500 S. Lake St., Mundelein.
Meets on the last Thursday of every month at 10:00 a.m. at the Waukegan Public Library, 128 N. County St., Waukegan.
A local, non-profit volunteer organization dedicated to helping parents and caregivers discover and enjoy the art of babywearing. Monthly meetings are held to give an overview of carrier types, provide individual guidance, and an opportunity to socialize (children are always welcome.) Members host playgroups and conduct outreach events. Babywearing classes are also available to help in carrier selection and instruction. There is a yearly fee to take home baby carriers from their lending library. Their Facebook group allows you to ask questions and share information online. Participation is FREE. For more information, visit their blog or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To find other organizations in addition to those listed here, check with your local library, church, hospital or visit Meetup.com.
Are you part of a group that you love that isn’t listed here? Tell us about it in the comments section below!