When you’re a kid, making friends is relatively easy. Between school and extracurricular activities, there are plenty of opportunities for new connections. Meeting people as an adult is a whole different ballgame, though, particularly if you’ve just moved to a new city. Chicago is a diverse place full of interesting people, but it can be challenging to link up with the ones you click with best. If you’re new to the Windy City, we have some suggestions for making friends in Chicago that can help you find your tribe.
Join a Fitness Club
Chicago is home to tons of fitness clubs and gyms, which can be great places to make new friends. Many fitness groups gather around the city every week, from running groups to cycling squads to sports teams. Pick your favorite exercise activity or sport, and check online for a relevant club in your neighborhood. Not only will you get in shape, but you’ll also have an opportunity to meet people who have similar interests.
Check Out MeetUps
MeetUps make it easy to find people who love what you love. They host a variety of events ranging from professional happy hours to creative gatherings. Whatever your hobby is, chances are there’s a MeetUp for it. Download the app, or check out the list of upcoming MeetUps in Chicago, and pick a few that align with your interests. You’ll be rubbing elbows with people who share your passions in no time.
Attend a Trivia Night
Trivia nights can provide excellent opportunities to meet new people. Many bars and restaurants host trivia nights on a weekly basis, so it shouldn’t be a challenge to find one in your neighborhood. Search for a niche trivia theme that you’re an expert on, then head to the bar and see if anyone’s looking for an additional member to join their team. People are usually eager to add a strong player to their trivia group. Just be sure to impress them with some of your knowledge, first.
Volunteering is one of the easiest ways to rub elbows with like-minded people. Chicago is full of volunteering opportunities, so it shouldn’t be difficult to find one that aligns with your passions, from animal shelters to environmental organizations. Volunteering is an ideal way to contribute to something greater than yourself while also exploring your own interests and meeting new people in the process. When it comes to making friends in Chicago, there’s no better way to do it than to find a volunteer opportunity that you’re passionate about.
Hang Out at a Dog Park
One of the many benefits of dog ownership is that pups can be great ice-breakers. In our opinion, nothing turns strangers into friends quicker than a shared love of dogs. Many PPM apartment buildings offer private dog parks for residents, which can be a great place to meet your neighbors. There are also lots of public dog parks located around the Windy City. Check out this list to find one closest to you.
Try An App
Online dating has become the norm. But apps can be used for more than just romantic prospects. There are plenty of apps for making friends, too. Some popular options include Bumble BFF, Friender and Hey! Vina. The Nextdoor app can also be a great way to meet your neighbors. Apps can be an especially good tool for introverts who are looking to meet new people without having to ensure crowds of strangers.