Maybe you’re new to the city. Maybe the friends you inherited from college or work just aren’t cutting it any more. Whatever the reason, there are plenty of ways to meet new and interesting people in San Francisco. And since we’re such an entrepreneurial and creative city, there’s a plethora of unconventional methods you can use to meet your new bestie, bro, amigo, or pal.
1. Join a Team for Sunday Recess
Games are one of the most fundamental ways that we socialize, and Sunday Recess takes that school-yard spirit of yore and gives it an adult twist. It’s a co-ed, multisport rec league in which teams compete in everything from frisbee to soccer to kickball. Afterward, the league sponsors a bar for the evening, where participants can engage in some indoor recreational activities.
2. Throw a Potluck
San Francisco is full of foodies, amateur chefs, and budding cooks. A new SF-based startup, inthis, takes the communal-potluck idea and removes the headache of organizing who brings what dish. The company is integrated with social networking sites, so you can use their simple drag-and-drop interface. Inviting guests (and meeting new friends) is just a click of a button away. Perhaps you can discover a new friend who makes the best casserole in the world.
3. Attend a Rock-Climbing Party
If you’re the outdoorsy type looking for like-minded adventurers, you might want to try your luck at one of SF’s two rock-climbing gyms. Meeting someone is as simple as asking one of the staffers to make an announcement over the loudspeaker for a belay partner. But if that sounds too intimidating, both gyms hold special social evenings where you can buy gear, compete, and talk shop. Check out the Singles & Swingers Night at Planet Granite in the Presidio if you want to tie up more than a climbing partner.
4. Join a Meetup.com ... for Your Dog
Meetup.com has been around for a while, allowing people to see what events are being held in their neighborhood and host their own. But there’s a growing community of local dog lovers organizing through the social service around breed and type of walk. Want to meet a bunch of sheepdog owners for a huge game of fetch in Duboce Park? Or play around with a bunch of English bulldogs? Maybe you’ll meet your new best friend with...um...man’s best friend.
5. Try to Survive “Journey to the End of the Night”
Journey to the End of the Night is an epic city-wide race/chase/game put on semi-regularly in San Francisco and in other major cities. A good pair of sneakers and a loyal band of comrades are key for this game, but it’s also a great way to forge new relationships in the crucible of competition. If you can’t wait for the next event, there are a number of other urban exploration groups and street-game outfits out there, such as SFZero and Wanderers Union.
Photo by Emanuele Spies