When we first moved to Erie, Pennsylvania just over 4 years ago I was completely lost. I had never lived in a brand new city far away from everyone I knew. I didn’t know what to do or where to begin.
Thankfully I was forced into things because I started a new job about 5 days after I moved in. I never did a good job though in getting involved in the community. Sure, I met people through running, my job and the gym but I really wish I had started earlier in meeting people and getting involved.
When we moved in a week or so ago I made it a point to start looking for ways to get involved. Here are a few things I have done that have helped.
Find Local Clubs
For us, it was looking up the local running stores and clubs. We wanted to be able to find people who had the same interests.
We found a local running and triathlon store that did various runs throughout the week. Last week we met up at 6:15 on Tuesday and did a 3 miles trail run. I haven’t run trails in a long time and it was so nice out there!
They also do workouts on Thursday, which I haven’t joined yet because I don’t need to be adding another workout in, long runs on Sundays and a group exercise class on Saturday morning. These are all easy ways for us to meet others who share a passion for running and also help to break up the week some!
If you aren’t a runner, just google whatever your interests are and I guarantee you will start to find groups or clubs where there are others who share the same interests.
When we first moved down here I knew a few people that I had been in contact with throughout the move. I casually would bring up in conversation if they knew anyone around the area in the same situation.
We are lucky in that with Wes being in a residency program that automatically gives a group of people who we can relate to. However, through my conversations I was introduced to 2-3 people who are around the same age and stage of life as us.
You’d be surprised how quickly just meeting a few people can change things!
Join a Gym
This is usually the first thing that we do in order to meet other people. This time around we haven’t taken the plunge to join a gym yet simply due to money constraints. Since the weather is beautiful and we are rarely inside anyways we have decided to hold off until the fall to join a gym.
When we moved to Erie it was one of the very first things we did. In fact, 3-4 of our closest friends up there were people who we had met while running or working out at the gym.
If you are trying to find a quick way to meet others at the gym, join group fitness classes! While I don’t do them that often I do find that I meet a lot of new people that way.
Put Yourself Out There
The key to meeting new people and getting involved in a city is putting yourself out there. Sometimes that means you are going to do things that aren’t really your thing to meet others.
Go to group events, local markets, etc and just talk to people. You will be surprised just how friendly people are and how much you can learn just from one afternoon walking around.
A few days after we got her we found a great little community market that is open every Saturday morning. It has great fresh produce and homemade goods. It’s a great place to go, walk around and meet others.
It’s not always easy at first but after a while it becomes easier and you begin to find new ways to get involved.
Throw a Get Together
A few days after we moved in we started planning a get together. I knew I wanted to do a belated-graduation party since a majority of our extended family wasn’t able to make the trip. On top of that, I wanted to have a way to invite people over and get to know those around us.
We took this opportunity to invite neighbors, our landlord really anyone we had met so far while in Danville to be able to start relationships.
We are looking forward to having our first party at our house in a couple weeks!
Have you ever moved somewhere new and had to “start over”?
What are your tips to getting involved in a new city?.