If you made a New Year’s resolution this year to get out there in the Pagan community and be more social, you might want to think about creating your own gathering.
The somewhat traditional term for a social gathering of Pagans is a “moot“, though other terms are also used. They’re typically monthly, social, get-togethers of Wiccans and Pagans who like to just sit and chat with folks of related beliefs. Even people who practice their religion in a solitary manner enjoy a chance to get to known new people.
Find a good location. Someplace that serves drinks and/or food is usually best. Pubs and coffeehouses have always been traditional moot locations. Try to get a place that is easy to get to, by public transit or by car.
Don’t just show up with your hoard of Pagans! Contact the manager of the establishment you want meet at and explain your plans. From my own experience with a variety of moots, most managers don’t mind these kinds of meetings considering the boost in business.
Check the age restrictions. If you chose a pub, you may be excluding some teens or people with children. If you chose a coffeehouse, smokers may have to go outside. Try to find a place that is the most broadly suitable, within reason.
Be there! If you are the organizer, you are obliged to be present. Introduce yourself to new people and try to keep conversation going. Have a set time to start the moot and make sure you are there. This is especially crucial when your moot is gathering steam.
Be consistent. If you start changing the times or location around, people will have a hard time keeping track of where your moot is. Try and keep to the same day of the week each month, the third Friday rather than the 21st of each month.
Think about why you want to start a moot. If your area already has a successful gathering, don’t try to draw people away just because you want one of your own. But if your community doesn’t have anything like this, or you feel that a sub-group of people might enjoy their own moot (such as a specifically Asatru get-together) then go for it.
You’ll likely find that word of mouth is the best promotion for an event like this, so it may take a while to get rolling. Be patient, and have fun.