5 Ways to Make New Friends in JC Parks

When you discover JC Parks, there are so many opportunities to discover new friends, too! No matter your age, interests, or abilities, we have places and programs for you to find your groove and meet people in the process.

Need some help getting started? Try these 5 ways to make a new friend in JC Parks!

    1. Sports Leagues
    2. Classes & Lessons
    3. Play at the Park
    4. Drop-in to A JC Parks Facility
    5. Catch an Event


1. Sports Leagues

Little Girls High 5 at Tee Ball

Shoot to score or play regardless of points. No matter how you approach team sports, we have a league to get you moving and meeting new people. Discover our leagues, today!


Adaptive Sports Leagues

Adaptive programs are for our friends with cognitive, physical, and developmental delays. Check out these fun sports opportunities and more!

  • JC Parks Stars: This year-round Special Olympics training program helps you hone your skills and put them to the test at competitions and tournaments!
  • Miracle Baseball League: This non-competitive baseball league gives every child the chance to play, regardless of ability.

Want to help? We love our volunteers! Contact us to become a “baseball buddy” or assist with a different adaptive program.


Adult Sports Leagues

Add some variety to your week! Whether you play to keep fit or to keep up with friends, our adult leagues are a great way to expand your circle.

  • Adult Slow-Pitch Softball: Fall men’s and co-rec divisions open for registration soon! Choose the single-game league or the double-header league depending on your desired number of matches.
  • Adult & High School Volleyball: Find plenty of indoor and sand league options to fit your needs. Fall women’s and co-rec sign-ups start July 5, 2021!

Want to play but don’t have a team? Contact us and we’ll find you a spot!


Youth Sports Leagues

Your child will have a ball in JC Parks Youth Sports! Discover a league where they can try something new, strengthen their skills, and best of all: Find pals in the process. Two youth sports leagues open for registration soon.

  • Youth Softball: Registration for Fall Competitive Softball opens July 12, 2021! 10U, 12U, and 14U leagues available.
    (Registration link is for coaches. Contact Steve Schellman if you’re in search of a team.)
  • NFL Flag Football: Boys and girls grades 1-6 learn the basics of football in this recreation non-contact league. Registration opens June 14, 2021!

 Youth Scholarships Available: Many youth sports leagues qualify for financial assistance. Learn more today!



2. Classes & Lessons

Adult Dance Class

If learning a new skill is more your style, go for JC Parks classes and lessons! Turn your interest into a talent and find some friends to practice with, too.


Adult Classes & Lessons

It’s never too late to learn! These fun programs can help you uncover a new ability and a new set of buddies.

  • Adult Swimming Lessons: With sessions held all summer long, you’re sure to find a class that fits your needs! Registration for 16+ is now open.
  • Adult Golf Lessons: Polish your swing and perfect your stance. Choose between Beginner and Intermediate lessons for instruction that makes sense for you!
  • Ice Skating Lessons: Learn the basics of skating in this low-pressure summer course. Classes are held Tuesday and Thursday evenings.
  • Judo & Jujitsu: Develop your self-defense skills in a safe and fun environment. Sessions available now through August, 2021!


Youth Classes & Lessons

From toddler to teen, if your child can dream it – they can do it! And meet life-long friends in the process.



3. Play at the Park

playground play community

Kids and parents alike can find new friends at the park! Park it at the playground or set out on a nature exploration. JC Parks can soothe whichever adventure itch you’re ready to scratch.


Playground Perfection

If slides and swings make you smile, check out these parks. Your new pal is waiting just across the monkey bars!

  • Community Park: Our newest park complete with climbing tower, ziplines, and splash park!
  • Ellis-Porter Riverside Park: Enjoy the updated play structures and rubberized tiles. Perfect for racing around the playground!
  • McClung Park: Catch impressive capitol views from this hilltop playground, designed for pre-school and school-age children.
  • McKay Park: The massive playground includes two jungle gyms surrounded by covered picnic tables.
  • Memorial Park: Two tree-house themed playgrounds means double the fun at Memorial Park!


Nature and Exploration

For the days you need a little nature in your life, try these parks. Find a friend on a walking trail or link up at the lakefront!


Close to Home

When all you can do is pop out for a few, rely on your neighborhood parks. These smaller parks are great for playing hard and meeting people who live close-by.



4. Drop-In to A Facility

Father ice skating with his kids

Surround yourself with new people rain or shine! We have a variety of facilities, indoor and outdoor, that cater to a range of ages and interests.



Make a splash at our pools this summer. A new friend is just a cannonball contest away!

  • Memorial Park Family Aquatic Center: Located on Jefferson City’s west end, this pool has a little something for everyone: 5 slides, climbing wall, play structure, and more!
  • Ellis-Porter Riverside Pool: On the east end, you’ll find just as much fun in the sun: kiddie area with fountains and slide, climbing wall, diving board, and fun floatables.

Admission at Both Pools

  • Ages 1-17: $5.50 before 5pm | $4.50 after 5pm
  • Ages 18+: $6.50 before 5pm | $5.50 after 5pm

Visit either pool page for information on season passes and group rates!


Oak Hills Golf Center

Perfect your swing or stroll under an oak tree canopy. You’ll find more than a few fellow golfers at Oak Hills – Open year-round! Even non-golfers can enjoy this beautiful park.

  • 18 Holes
  • Clubhouse and Bar
  • Golf Carts
  • Cart and Walking Paths
  • Driving Range
  • Practice Area
  • Golf Lessons
  • Fishing

Regular Season Rates (18 holes with cart)

  • Adult: $41 Monday – Thursday | $43 Friday – Sunday
  • Junior/Senior/Twilight: $33 Monday – Sunday

Visit the Oak Hills Golf Center page for additional rates, course fees, season pass information!



The LINC Wellness and Recreation Center is the perfect place to get moving and meet someone new. Members and day pass-holders alike are welcome to the

  • Fitness Center
  • Walking Track
  • Basketball Courts
  • Exercise Classes ($7 drop-in fee for non-members)

Daily Drop-In Rates

  • 0-17: $3
  • 18-59: $5
  • 59+: $3
  • Senior Couple: $5
  • Family: $15

Visit The LINC page for membership rates!


Washington Park Ice Arena

From just starting out to “been skating my whole life,” Washington Park Ice Arena is the place for recreational and competitive ice sports. Find a new pal at public session or join a team to meet some mates!

  • Public Session: These free-skate times are open to the public! Check the calendar for upcoming sessions.
    • 0-17: $5
    • 18+: $6
    • Skate Rental: $3
  • Birthday Parties: Bring your birthday bash to WPIA! Whether you’re celebrating a loved one’s birthday or entertaining a group from out of town, we offer several rental options to keep them entertained.

Visit the Washington Park Ice Arena page for more information on figure skating freestyle sessions, hockey drop-ins, and season passes.


Dog Park

Fur babies love to make friends, too! Plus, you can chat it up with other dog owners at the North Jefferson Recreation Area Dog Park. Located adjacent to the Cedar City multipurpose building and the park features:

  • 2 Acres
  • Park Benches
  • Double Gated Entrance
  • Water Source
  • Waste Disposal Stations
  • Big Dog Area
  • Small Dog Area (30 lbs and under)

Usage Permit Required! Visit our Dog Park page for additional information.


5. Catch an Event

Kids Fest

When you want to go big instead of staying home, try one of our events! With multiple categories and price points, you can find a quality event that’s sure to attract other fun friends-to-be. Some upcoming events include:


Stars Under the Stars

Our outdoor summer movie series at Ellis-Porter Riverside Park features family-friendly flicks, for FREE! Bring lawn chairs, blankets, and your favorite snacks – Or purchase your treats at concessions.



Find entertainment, games, education, and hands-on activities for kids of all ages! This free event also features a variety of concessions and other vendors with items for sale.

Saturday, June 5, 2021
10:00am – 2:00pm
Free admission

NEW location at Ellis-Porter Riverside Park


Porchfest JCMO

Join us for some afternoon fun, music and art as you stroll down Historic Capitol Avenue. The porches will be filled with music and art while the street is full of activities, food, and just plain fun for the whole family!

Sunday, June 13, 2021
1:00 – 4:00pm
Free Admission

Capitol Ave.



What Now?

Now that you have a few fun ideas, there’s only one thing left to do… Sign-up or head out!

Whether you’re partial to planned events and programs or thrive on spontaneous adventure, we know you’ll find some friends along the way.