Some neighborhoods and very close knit. It makes sense for the new family on the block to ease into their new surroundings without being obtrusive and overbearing. But it can also make things smoother for everyone involved if you reach out to your new neighbors.
One very easy way to break the awkward time in half is to throw housewarming parties and have your friends and family. Then you simply invite anyone who seems interested from around the neighborhood.
You may not want to go so far as to create flyers, but a nice friendly knock on the door at a reasonable hour will suffice.
Introduce yourself and explain that you are new in the neighborhood. This can help to put some of the more up tight neighbors at ease, and might even start life long relationships if you stay put for a while.
Go with neutral foods. Nothing too fancy, or pretentious. Typical American fare might be good — BBQ, pizza, fried chicken, pastas — it will make people comfortable. Have a few beers or cocktails available to break the ice, and before you know it, you will know every piece of history the neighborhood has to offer.
Inviting the neighbors along with family and friends helps to prevent the odd and awkward moments you might experience if ONLY people you don’t know show up. It will also help your children become familiar with the neighborhood kids.
It’s a win all the way around, and one that will make the transition better for everyone.