Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Hosting a Meet-up

This is part two of my previous post on attending a meet-up. This one focuses on hosting a meet-up. There are many different types of meet-ups and many choices to make when planning your own meet-up. But if you follow this guide, you're sure to have a great time and a smooth meet-up.

1. Decide what kind of meet-up to have
First, you need to decide whether you want to have your meet-up in a private place, like your home, or in a public place. Meet-ups held in your home are things like crafting meet-ups, cookie swaps, casual meet-ups, or my personal favorite, video game tournaments! I really would like to host a wii party with a few people from my local group sometime soon. If you are having your meet-up in a public place, you need to decide where. Do you want to have it at a museum or gallery? Do you want to go to eat? Do you want to go shopping? The possibilities are endless.

2. Post It!
If you are hosting a meet-up, you probably know your local community and have been to a meet-up before. If you are just meeting with some friends, that's fine too. No matter what, you need to get the information out there! Post the info to your local page, your facebook, myspace, what have you. I cannot stress this enough, if you are going to be eating somewhere, make sure to ask people to list any allergies or dietary restrictions that they have BEFORE you make a reservation! You do not want anyone to feel left out because they can't eat at the restaurant or have someone have an allergic reaction. Do all of this pretty early so that people can plan to come to your meet-up, especially if you need to make reservations or anything. I suggest at least two weeks.

3. Make Sure People RSVP
You want people to tell you that they are coming to your meet-up. If they are bringing any friends, family members, or a significant other, they need to specify this. Make a list of people that are coming and take it with you. If people are going to be coming late, write this down too. This way you aren't waiting for people that are coming later and make sure you don't leave anyone behind.

4. Try and Talk to Everybody
Especially if there are new people. I am a moderator for our local community, so I try my best to make everyone feel welcome. If you notice someone is especially shy or not talking to anyone, go up and try talking to them. This is really tough for me because I'm very shy, but I try my best. See the previous article for conversation starters.

5. Be Prepared to Change Plans
Stuff happens. In the winter, it snows and roads become impassible. In the summer, it rains when you're trying to have a picnic. Restaurants are randomly closed, places renovate, crowds happen. So think of a back up plan for things that can go wrong. In the winter, have a pre-determined snow date. If it rains the day of your picnic, have it inside a park gazebo. If the restaurant is closed, look for similar ones nearby. I had a meet-up once that the place we were going would only take reservations the morning of the day you want to go. I called and they were booked full for a baby shower. So I called my back up place. And it was booked for a wedding shower! So I called my third back up and they were open. In the end, it worked out! Just goes to show you, you can never be too prepared.

Remember to have fun and be yourself! Meet-ups are a great way to meet other lolitas, make friends, and have a good time. I hope this helps you to start organizing your own meet-ups in your town! If you read my blog regularly, please become a follower of it! And as always, if you have any questions, comments, or requests, post them here as a comment, or let me know on my Formspring!

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