Moved to Minnetonka W/2 Year Old, Looking for a Playgroup

Updated on July 30, 2010
M.M. asks from Hopkins, MN
5 answers

I recently moved to Minnetonka, MN from St. Louis, MO with my husband & 2 year old daughter. I am totally disoriented here and besides my in-laws, I do not know anyone. We are rehabing a foreclosure & are staying in a Marriot Residents Inn for another month, so almost of our things, including toys, are still in St Louis. My poor daughter is going crazy here. It's colder than we're used to, she has no one besides me to play with and I don't know of any community activities to do with her yet b/c we're so new. We used to go to a playgroup in St Louis, which we both loved & she went to a nursery school 3 days a week while I worked as a lawyer. Our new home is near Ridgedale Mall. Anyone out there want to expand their toddler playgroup? I need so much insight to the Minneapolis area: eventually daycare, pediatrian, doctors/dentists...I don't even know where the post office is!

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answers from Minneapolis on

Welcome to MN! Yes, the winters can be long and cold. You may not realize it yet, but you are in a great location. I live in the southeastern suburbs, but I grew up in the western suburbs. To start off, I recommend you get a hold of your local ECFE (Early Childhood Family Education) catalog. It might be late to get into spring classes, but they offer drop in times and some summer classes. It is a great way to keep your little one busy and for you to meet some people. It was a lifesaver when my kids were little. I also recommend checking out the local YMCA. Ours has childcare provided for members while you work out, a zero depth entry pool for little ones and great classes for kids of all ages. Another lifesaver for me when my kids were little. Edinborough is an indoor playground in Edina, not far from you. It's a little pricey ($5) and most of the playground is for older kids, but there is a toddler play area, a jumper and a gym. It would be a nice rainy day treat. You are right in the middle of the Hennepin County Parks system. This summer you should get a park pass and explore a variety of parks and playgrounds. In Minnetonka (west of you) there is a man made lake for swimming with a beautiful sand beach. It is perfect for little ones. There's a playground there too. There is also a very nice, large playground in West Bloomington near Hyland Park. The Arboretum (Chanhassen, west of you) is good for burning off steam and has a kid-friendly cafeteria. Many communities have Community Centers with indoor playgrounds, pools, classes, etc. I'm not familiar with your area, but contact your local Parks and Rec. Here in Minnesota we have "MOM's clubs." You might be able to find one in your area. Someone mentioned Children's Hospital and they have a clinic they call "Children's Hospital West" very close to Ridgedale. I don't know exactly what type of services they offer at that clinic, but I know my son's pulmonoligist has an office there. My children are older, and I don't live near you so I can't offer specific playgroups, but I have survived many MN winters with two very active boys so feel free to send me a message if you have any questions. I am also an attorney turned SAHM turned part time contract attorney. I used to sell Discovery Toys, and I'd be willing to temporarily loan you some toddler toys if you wanted to drive to Eagan to pick them up. Good luck!



answers from Minneapolis on


I am originally from Wisconsin, and have been here for four years now. I am from the other side of the cities, but I can give you a few helpful ideas of things that I have figured out for my kiddos.
First as far as pediatricians: My kids all came really early and have had lung issues so having the best of care has always been really important to me. I would very highly recommend going to Children's Hospital and Clinics of Minneapolis. My kids see Dr. Julie Boman who is absolutley top notch at her work and a fabulous person to care for any child. There is not a single doctor at Children's who has cared for my children that I would not recommend. The nice thing is, if you ever have an emergency and go to their e-room they will be able to see your child's medical file and provide the best care possible.
As far as things to do: In St. Paul there is a fantastic Children's Museum that can provide a ton of fun and entertainment for any age. While you are looking for work, on the third sunday of every month admission is free to families. In north St. Paul there is the Como Zoo and plant conservatory. Parking is free and admission is by donation. This place is to go to meet other Moms as it is always FULL of moms with strollers during the weekdays. There are kid friendly informative talks and activities that go each day. When it is too cold to go outside the greenhouses are welcome environment for a comfortable walk. There is a small cafe, or you can pack a lunch. There is also an indoor primate exhibit that my kids love. In the summer there are great outdoor exhibits as well as a little ride carnival.
If you find your local library, there is a great deal in the city where you can check out a pass to see many of the best local attractions including the Minnesota Zoo (south -west side of cities), the natural history museum, the science museum, The Arboretum, Fort Snelling, and much much more. Most of the libraries have story-time for toddlers which is another great place to meet other moms. If you contact your local school system they are a great resource for things available for toddlers as well. I live in the south east suburbs in Washington County, and we have several preschool programs and events for parents and children that are through the school district. As I am not from your side of the city I do not know specific events going on ove there. Hopefully this is helpful to you:-)
Oh..... for dentists, I would highly recommend Metropolitan Pediatric Dental. I know there are a few different locations in the city. We go to Eagan. They are very very good with gentle and non invasive dentistry. All of the assitants are great with my kids and the work the Dentist does is quick, really good, and done without causing more fear.
Good luck and welcome to the Twin Cities!



answers from Minneapolis on

Welcome to town! As a fellow relocater, I feel your pain! We moved to Minnetonka a little over a year ago and it takes so much more to get adjusted with a little one! We don't really have a playgroup that we participate in- there is a Mom's Club which I think you could find on-line.

In terms of doctors- we ended up at Park Nicolet- there is one at Carlson Pkwy, 394 & 494. Also, for Dentists we ended up at Metro Dental in Wayzata- straight down 394. Not very creative, but they serve their purpose!

Sorry no daycare insights- we don't use any. Although, we do enjoy classes at the Minnetonka ECFE where they have preschool for 2 yo's. They have an Explorer Club option which goes in the afternoon. Not sure on hours, etc- but something you may want to check out.

The best advise someone gave me about relocating is to make the most of where you are! Our first winter was so overwhelming- and the cold here is a lot to get used to! However, this winter we made a point to get ice skates- they have skating rinks in several of the parks around town where you can skate for free. Also, there are so many sledding hills- they are so much fun! AND the parks- we like to just get out and walk to parks. During the summer, there is a bike path right along Minnetonka Blvd that will take you out to a park in Victoria or all the way into Minneapolis. There are also so many beachs to talke advantage of in the summer.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any other questions. We're still learning ourselves, but it is so hard to find some of the simplest things that I understand if you need help!



answers from Minneapolis on

Welcome to MN! I have lived in Minnetonka since I was nine. (with the exception of college) My husband and I got married and decided to be close to family again. We are part of a MOPS group. It is Mothers of preschoolers. It is at Ridgewood church every other Thursday. I believe you could get more info at

My son, nephews and other friends have gone to All Saints Preschool. They have all sorts of programs. I haven't found anyone there that I didn't like. I would highly recommend it. They also have a daycare as well.

We have never taken any classes, but I have heard the ECFE classes are great. The large library right by you also has toddler classes. My kids always loved those too.

if you need more information or help feel free to send me a message.



answers from Los Angeles on

Hi M.,

You could also try searching on - it's a playgroup directory and social network for parents that are looking for activities for their kids.

Hope this helps,


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