As my college and high school friends are spread across the country, I rely on a few local dad friends for the occasional pick up game of tennis or round of poker. But how exactly do you find dad friends? It can be easier than it sounds, and the good news is you don’t have to be the creepy guy hanging out at a park passing out your number to every dude that shows up with a kid. (Although you can try that if you want to.)
1. Pick up your kids. If your kids are part of a sport or club, volunteer to do the pick up, and show up a few minutes early. You’ll get to meet the other parents that are waiting for their kids with you, and hopefully at least one of them will be a dude.
2. Join a local pool or community center. Relaxing at the pool while your kids swim is a great way to get to know other dads. Maybe you’ll bond by dominating your kids in a splash contest or offering a beer from your cooler. It’s an easy and relaxing atmosphere to get to know fellow dads.
3. Walk the dog. Simply talking a stroll through the neighborhood with the dog (or a kid or two) has led to me meeting several of my neighbors. And I would certainly call a few of them my friends. Fellow dad AND a neighbor? That makes friendship pretty easy.
4. Say yes to your wife. The next time your wife suggests that you get together with her friends for a couples outing, say yes. You might meet a few duds, but chances are at least one of her friends is married to someone that like. At the very least, you’ll have something in common with all of the men you meet (your wives are friends).
5. Host happy hour. If you’ve done steps 1 – 4, host an impromptu happy hour and invite your new friends and their families to your house for a drink. It’s a great chance to get to know your new dad friends beyond practice pick up, the pool or the neighborhood.