It seems that the older we get, the harder it is to make new friends. Throw in a pandemic that requires you to stay inside and it's definitely understandable why an adult who is new to an area would have some trouble meeting new people.

This was the exact subject of discussion in a recent Kalamazoo Reddit post.

Originally asked by u/ElizabethAF, the post read, in part,

Hello people of Kalamazoo! As the pandemic begins to wane and we adapt back to a sense of normalcy, I think it’s time that I make more friends to replace those which I lost when they moved away from the Kalamazoo area. Where are some places I could go, or things that I could do to meet more people without having to go through the whole talk online and never actually meet each-other phase?

It's a fair question and locals had some answers:

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1. The Kalamazoo Sport and Social Club 

Bennett Raglin
Bennett Raglin

This suggestion came from u/Fraiser_C who said, "Kalamazoo Sport and Social Club is good! Not sure how active they are right now, but I'd check them out." Indeed, it looks like the Kalamazoo Sport and Social Club (or KSSC) is currently looking for teams to fill out the roster for dodgeball. And what a way to get to know chucking balls at their head as fast as you can. All joking aside that really does sound like fun. Check out what KSSC has to offer online or on their Facebook page.

*Side Note: We had a comment from someone named James who also recommended the Best Damn Sport and Social Club KZOO which is locally owned and operated. You can find their website here or follow them on Facebook!*

2. Kayaking

Kayaking. People paddling a kayak. Canoeing, paddling.
Artur Didyk

Someone with the username Rampjaar said, "If you like hiking or kayaking, I’ve been looking for more people in the area to be outdoor adventure buddies with!" Kalamazoo certainly offers plenty of options for both hiking and kayaking. However, if you don't own a kayak there's no need to worry. There are plenty of places in the Kalamazoo area where you can rent a kayak either hourly or for the whole day. Check out the full list below:

3. Fanfare in Kalamazoo

Via/ Google Maps
Via/ Google Maps

If you're someone who's into tabletop games or comic books, this suggestion from u/SennaLokas is just for you! They said, "There are game nights at Fanfare if you’re into tabletop games!" Fanfare, off Westnedge Ave, offers comic books, used Dvd's, Cd's and video games, Sci-fi & Fantasy games and more according to their website. It does look like they offer some game nights. However, with the pandemic just ending, I'm not sure if those are in person. You can find more information on their website or their Facebook page.

4. Join a book club


The same commenter, u/SennaLokas, also suggested joining a book club. They said, "Kazoo Books had some book clubs (I remember seeing a flyer for a sci-fi one) meeting monthly. They went online with the pandemic, but they might be back to in-person now." On their website, Kazoo Books does have a few clubs listed...but no specific word on if those are back to in-person. You can find all of their contact information here or follow them on Facebook.

As well, u/TiffkaKitka said, "The KPL libraries also have a few different book clubs!"  In my brief exploration of Kalamazoo Public Library's website, I didn't see anything explicitly mentioning book clubs. But, that doesn't mean they don't offer them. In fact, KPL is already offering more than books. Check out their goal of having a "library of things" other than books that they plan to offer to patrons:


Via/ Apple Store
Via/ Apple Store

Of course there's an app for that. While I haven't personally used the Meetup App, it was suggested by u/sarah232323. The app seems to provide meetups for all kinds of activities across the country. You simply type in your preferred activity (kayaking for example) and your town and viola! You have a list of groups participating in the same activity that are welcoming to new people wanting to join. You can download the Meetup app in the Apple Store or visit them online here.

These are great suggestions. My only hesitation is towards the thought of meeting up with people that are overall strangers after a few conversations online. However, joining clubs or using specific apps does make meeting new people feel not just possible but safer too. If you're seeking new friends in Kalamazoo give these a shot and good luck!

If you've found that friend or are just looking for a scenic road trip through Michigan make sure to check these out along the way:

52 of the Best Michigan Waterfront Dining Locations

You probably already have a favorite dining location with a view, most of us do. But what you will find here is a nice long list of waterfront dining locations in every part of Michigan. Be adventurous, take a drive and explore something new, you'll find locations within an hour or more away from you that you have yet to experience.

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