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Fri, Sept. 20

Got an interest? Get a Meetup group!

Courtesy Photo<BR>
A Meetup group goes kayaking at Prescott’s Watson Lake in August of 2012.

Courtesy Photo<BR> A Meetup group goes kayaking at Prescott’s Watson Lake in August of 2012.

"I'm going to meet up with my painting group" could mean visiting with a few artist friends over coffee, or nowadays could involve more than hundred members of a Prescott Painters Meetup crowd at a workshop.

People wanting to share a hobby or activity, or pursue an interest in education, pleasure or relaxation, can join any number of groups of like-minded individuals.

Meetup claims to be the world's largest network of local groups, making it easy for anyone to organize a local group or find one of the hundreds already meeting face-to-face, the Meetup website states.

More than 9,000 groups get together in local communities each day, each one with the goal of improving themselves or their communities. The lead organizer pays about $10 per year, which helps pay for the website. Some leaders will charge a fee to members to cover this cost and also supplies for events.

In the Quad-cities' high desert and pines, it's hard to imagine a Meetup group of 30 members of sailing enthusiasts describing themselves as "friendly like-minded people who have sailboats, and some who don't, who enjoy sailing and the art of sailing. Some are experienced and some are new to the sport." Their interests include learning to sail, increasing sailing skills, working on boats, and being on the water.

More likely is the Best Years Camping group with 27 members who enjoy serenity and hearing the peaceful sounds of the nature in tents or small travel trailer campers.

More than 300 members make up the Prescott LGBTQ CommUNITY. This group is open to lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people, and anyone questioning their sexual identity. They also welcome supportive allies.

The group abides by "safe space guidelines" that include treating everyone with courtesy and respect; using polite language, and thinking about the power and impact of one's words; honoring the diversity within the community; and respecting the privacy of all members and guests. Soliciting for business, religious, political, or sexual purposes is prohibited. The organizer must approve new members.

The Prescott Progressives, 93 members, get together with fellow Progressives, Democrats, Liberals, and Independents to discuss current political agendas and to create ways to organize so their voices can be heard in the coming election cycles.

Those wanting to learn and share their passion for photography number 146 in the Prescott Shutterbugs Meetup group. They include professionals and amateurs, and often go on trips.

Prescott Freethinkers, 293 members, are a community-oriented group of skeptics and nontheists that meets for social events, discussion and family-friendly activities. They welcome any science-minded, reason-based thinkers to join them for fellowship and fun.

A small group of 10 make up a local group of the International Street Angels of the World, a 501(c) charity whose mission is to help neglected children wherever, whenever, however. This group is involved with outreach programs and fundraising.

To find out about more Meetup groups in the area, visit www.meetup.com/cities/us/az/prescott/.

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