International Baby Playdates began when Betsy Kempter invited co-worker and PhD student Xiao Hua Liu to bring her child over to play. The unofficial program quickly expanded to other international families; often they live in apartments and only one parent speaks English. Betsy, a former professional marathon runner, and her family live on two acres, the site of the former Sunflower Preschool. A chicken coop, pond, garden, tree fort, zip line, sandbox, climbing wall and cave make their home a natural fit for the casual, friendly events. The events draw between five and twenty children for outdoor play and fellowship. Korea, Russia, Japan, Germany, and China are frequently represented. Betsy enjoys connecting people in positive ways. She finds it strange “to feel the world closing in around you” and she hopes Orange County will continue its efforts to protect natural spaces through responsible land use planning.