From September through June, there are so many meetings and events on weeknights, there is often not time available to attend networking meetings. But over the summer months when there is a slightly more relaxed schedule, I like to use the spare time to network. This summer I discovered some new Meetup groups. One that really impressed me was the Hudson Valley Tech Meetup. I've been fortunate to attend every meeting and there has been a wonderful turnout. In fact it has been so popular that they had to cap the number of people that could attend the last meeting at 90.
What I like best about the meeting is that they have 3 speakers, given roughly 15 minutes each and there is such a variety of topics and information. Then they take several minutes in the middle of the meeting to allow you to introduce yourself to the people around you. The structure of the meeting is wonderful for networking and keeping in touch with familiar faces from previous meetings. It is well worth the time and is an amazing opportunity to meet other technical people in the Hudson Valley. Each month they alternate the side of the Hudson River where the meeting is held, either in Poughkeepsie or Kingston. Next meeting is August 27 in Kingston, NY. Register early!