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What we’re about

I joined this group on August 2nd, 2017, but did not attend an event until November 4th, 2017, where the original creators of this group were looking for someone to take it over as they were moving from the area. My intention was to offer help to whoever was stepping up to lead the group as I thought it was a great idea to explore restaurants in Vancouver (and Clark County).  Unfortunately, I was the only one to show up. Fortunately, I agreed to take it over but would change the focus towards restaurants that were featured in the Weekly Restaurant Review in The Columbian.
After 250+ gatherings over nearly 6 years, life being interrupted by Covid and other events in all our lives, I think it is time to reboot this effort. Admittedly, I have been lax at scheduling events and some of our co-leaders have moved on, including LouAnna, who has a similar and very active Meetup Group that I recommend.
My commitment is to schedule a Meetup gathering every week, schedule permitting.  I will focus on restaurants featured in The Columbian (link above if you want to follow along). Thursday turns out to be a good day for me, but there will be weeks where my schedule does not allow that. I am looking for others that would like to step up to help by hosting events. I could also choose to schedule an event to experience brunch or some other local food event I think the group would enjoy. We will see how this goes.

Welcome to Vancouver Dining Out. Every week, we try to gather at a restaurant for dinner and great conversation. We limit our choices to those restaurants located in Vancouver, and surrounding areas in Clark County and Southwest Washington (within reasonable driving distances). We draw inspiration for our choices from restaurants that are reviewed in the Food Section of The Columbian newspaper. We also dine at restaurants that are recommended to us or are a favorite of our Meetup group for return visits. Let us know if you have a suggestion for a restaurant to visit. 
We purposely keep our outings small, generally between 6 – 12 attendees. We have found that this helps to encourage everyone that attends to participate in the conversation and reduces the stress that comes from being in a large noisy group. It also reduces the strain on the kitchen and serving staff of the places we visit. Thus far, it seems to work well, from all the positive feedback we receive from attendees and restaurant owners/managers. 
The downside to this strategy is we often have more people interested in going than we can accommodate. That results in the creation of a waitlist. But don’t be discouraged if an event is full. There always seem to be cancellations and if you are on the waitlist, you could be automatically added to the RSVP attending list when others cancel. If you see something you like, sign up. Knowing that you want to attend one of our Meetup events, our event leaders make every effort to get you included. 

Covid Considerations 
We all have lived through an extraordinary time these past 24 months and I for one, am eager to be able to get out and about again. But the reality is that much has changed and all of us need to be mindful of our own health as well as the health of others, both in our group as well as the employees and other customers of the restaurants we visit. 

No Show Policy 
Our policy on no shows is simple.  The first time you RSVP to an event and do not notify the event host prior to the day of the event that you are not attending, you will get a gentle reminder of the importance of minding your schedule and your appointments, including our events.  The second time will be a warning that your membership of our group will be revoked if a third no-show occurs. When the third no show occurs, you will be removed from our group. 
Feel free to send me a message with any questions, concerns or suggestions. 
Thank you. 
Dale Groetsema, Organizer, Vancouver Dining Out Meetup Group

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