This group is for anyone interested in hiking, biking, outdoor adventure, photography, and good wine. All skills levels are welcome as there are activities geared for various fitness/skill/endurance levels. Being an orgainser for several other groups I've decided to start my own, so we can combine more activities and quite frankly, have more fun. We typically have a hike every Saturday at various locations around the Bay Area. Rides are usually on Sundays and we typically ride through Sonoma County wine regions, and of course there's an occasional night or evening hike ending w/ a potluck & bonfire. We also have blind wine tastings every other month at a member's home, and there are occasional parties, we attend music events, have summer beach parties, barbecues, or other activities that equate to the members having fun.
If you're wondering how outdoor adventure and vino go together, stay tuned...
Our hikes always have a vino/snack break where we have some wine and snacks on the trail, then later we stop for a potluck lunch w/ some vino. On some hikes we leave the food behind and do a big pot luck at the end, where an assortment of nice wines are enjoyed along w/ a varied food spread. We bring our own vino, which is suggested though certainly not required. If you haven't tried this one, I believe you'll be pleasantly surprised. We don't over indulge, nor is anyone required to bring or drink anything they don't want to. Several people bring water, iced tea, or juice, rather than vino. Again, the idea is for everyone to just have a good time and connect, as I believe you will.
My philosophy is the group exists for the benefit of the members, and all activities are geared to give you guys a fun, healthy, safe, enjoyable, way to meet other people and enjoy each others company, while getting some good exercise. As an organiser I see myself here to serve you guys.
Aside from outdoor activities we also have a bi-monthly wine group that meets for private wine tastings, but you already knew that, yes? There is a stated varietal, and we all bring wine and have food while enjoying a blind tasting together, which will expose us all to new wines and varietals. If all of this doesn't quite make sense, or you don't know much about wine, don't worry. You'll meet new people, enjoy good wine and food, and learn about vino all at the same time!
Anyone single or married who is interested in meeting people in the Bay Area for hiking, biking, photography, enjoying the outdoors, good wine, and each other, is welcome. If you're 21 years or older, then you're the right age for this group. Other than that there are no requirements, and no other restrictions. Above and beyond this, my hope is that people will connect and become friends through this group, as many have in the groups I've been orgainsing for.
Adding to that, I'll mention something about what this grp is not. It's really not a place for gathering attention to yourself, because it's about meeting others, connecting, and building a sense of community, as opposed to individuals promoting themselves personally. Our activities are designed to promote community, not self - be it me or anyone else. I'm just a guy wanting to serve others w/ the hope of promoting community, while we have fun doing so. In other Meetup grps I've seen and heard members going on about themselves, which is the exact antithesis of what our grp is for. This is not to say we don't talk about our lives, but when everything that is said is all about me, I think something is missing. We're all just people, and what I'm saying is no one is special, and if anyone thinks they are, then this grp is probably not a good fit for them.
And btw, this Meetup Group and it's organisers do not take any responsibility for your safety. We simply research, plan, schedule, and provide interesting, fun, activities for your pleasure. We're all adults and responsible for ourselves, though we certainly look out for ea other on all activities.
People often wonder how the grp works, and why some grps charge a fee while others do not. Most people are not aware that Meetup charges us to have our websites and for being associated w/ the Meetup organisation. (If you've been led to believe otherwise, Meetup is not a non-profit organisation.) There is a ton of time needed to plan, execute, and provide a good time for everyone, and if you've been on any of my activities you understand that I do everything to make sure everyone gets their $5 worth. Planning alone for all the activities is huge. Another Meetup grp recently figured what their annual costs were, and it was a surprisingly tidy sum. Every grp handles the money differently. Some charge a joining fee, others require dues, many ask for annual contributions, while others have sponsors. This group is sponsor free, because I don't want the commercialisation. We're not here to promote goods and services, just connect and have fun, and as I always tell people, they don't need me or this grp. There are tons of options out there. If my style isn't a fit, there's one out there that is. For some, (The Usual Suspects, as I refer to them), we've become friends and enjoy what we're building here.
A word about "No shows". No shows indicate someone is typically not interested in the grp and it's members. Time and planning goes into every event, and a "No show" for most really says, "I don't care about being considerate". I ask that you take the time to consider others, and if you sign up for an activity and later find you cannot attend, just change your RSVP to "No" (prior to the start time of the event). This shows you are willing to take two minutes to be considerate. If a member gets three (3) "No shows" they may be removed from the grp or given a 30 day "No RSVP period". If a member gets a "No show" for an activity at another member's home, they will be removed from the grp, unless there are extreme extenuating circumstances. This is not meant to sound harsh, but is simply a way of reminding people that respect for others is important. When someone hosts an event at their home, (Wine Tasting or Party), you know they spent plenty of time cleaning and preparing for the guests. Let's face it - in this situation it is just rude to no show.
That said, let's enjoy ea others company w/ the hope of making connections, building stronger, deeper, relationships while we exercise, socialise, and sip some vino together!