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MOPS support group is in Bemidji

Mothers of young children who are looking for support and friendship may now turn to a local group.

Mothers of Preschoolers, known as MOPS, is a nondenominational support group for mothers of children from birth to kindergarten-age.

MOPS meets monthly at 6 p.m. on the second Thursday of each month from September to May. Its first meeting of 2007-08 will be from about 6-8 p.m. on Sept. 13 at First Lutheran Church in Bemidji.

MOPS meetings each month are planned to feature a speaker, discussion time and a craft project, according to coordinator Melissa Heglund.

The theme for the Sept. 13 meeting will be Decorating with Cents and will feature speaker Jodi St. John, who will discuss how to decorate a home without spending a lot of money. It also will be a membership meeting in which the group will discuss the benefits of membership to the group.

Refreshments will be available, and child care is provided in a "Sunday school" atmosphere in which children do crafts and have structured play time and lessons, Heglund said.

All mothers are welcome, no matter whether they work or stay at home, are young or experienced, Heglund said.

Twenty-five mothers attended the first three MOPS meetings in Bemidji this past spring, Heglund said.

MOPS began in the 1973 with eight women in Colorado. Now, it is an international organization that offers encouragement, support and friendship for mothers of young children.