Whether you are an expectant parent, or a parent of a child or teen, having a strong community support to help guide you through the challenge of raising a happy and healthy person is invaluable. Neighborhood Parents Network provides the support that Chicago parents need, as well as playgroups, babysitting co-ops, Moms-Morning-Out programs, and more.
Neighborhood Parents Network will be at the 2017 Chicago Baby Show, on August 26 and 27, at Navy Pier, when the nation’s largest show for expectant and new families comes to Chicagoland. A family-friendly mega-event featuring everything to do with maternity, baby, and toddler – from top products to trusted parenting experts – the Chicago Baby Show will welcome thousands of expectant and new parents from Chicago, the surrounding suburbs, and beyond!
Tickets to the Chicago Baby Show are $30 per family, and $20 per individual.
We spoke with Laura Baginski, a member of the Neighborhood Parents Network team to learn more about the brand and what new parents can expect at the Chicago Baby Show.
For someone unfamiliar with Neighborhood Parents Network, how would you describe the company’s mission and core offerings?
Neighborhood Parents Network connects a diverse community of families by providing support and resources designed to solve the challenges of parenting in Chicago. We do this by providing school-choice workshops and resources; offering resources to help find childcare; serving as a source of support and guidance for families navigating developmental differences; and organizing playdates and parenting workshops for our members.
Tell us about the company’s background. When did it start and how has it evolved since then?
NPN started in 1980 when a small group of pioneer parents realized it wouldn’t be possible to raise their kids in the city without a strong network of support. The group remained fairly small and concentrated on Chicago’s North Side for a number of years. NPN organized playgroups, babysitting co-ops, Moms-Morning-Out programs and other family gatherings. We began publishing a newsletter to share parenting tips and community information. And we organized school fairs and other parenting resources. Our marketing effort was solely word-of-mouth communication.
As technology advanced, it became easier to grow the network. We now have 5,000 members who connect on our website, npnparents.org, using our discussion forum. We plan monthly member mingles, a yearly school fair, a yearly fair for parents of kids with developmental differences, small get-togethers for new moms, and countless other playdates and activities.
What are the most popular and/or newest services from Neighborhood Parents Network?
We’re excited to be rolling out virtual school tours on our website in September! Parents will be able to tour 30+ private and public schools from the comfort of their homes, making the search for the right school for their child that much easier.
Our most popular service continues to be our free monthly Member Mingles, where parents and kids gather at a Chicago playspace and have a blast. We also have a huge turnout for our Chicago Public Schools 101 workshops, which we offer several times a year.
What sets Neighborhood Parents Network apart from other community organizations?
Whether you live on the North, South or West Side, NPN has all the resources you need. And our offerings are growing along with our members’ children: We now host high school admissions workshops—something parents need sooner than they think!