The one thing many single people here in Vancouver have in common is discussing the lack of opportunities to meet people to date. Even the “twenty something’s” are resorting to online dating sites! Whatever happened to going out & meeting someone the old fashioned way?
Are we getting lazy or are we losing our nerve to be publicly single?
Due to this dilemma “Meet Up Groups” are becoming a popular networking source for business, social activities and singles wanting to meet a long term partner. These groups are trying to bring back the mingle aspect of people actually talking to each other face to face. Technology is a double edge sword with the availability of being plugged into everything possible & being tuned out at the same time when it comes to human contact.
I was recently invited to attend a Vancouver Meet Market Adventure Event at Ceili’s Irish Pub & Restaurant downtown. It was advertised as “Vancouver’s Largest Single Summer Kick Off Rooftop Patio Party.” The name of this group intrigued me; I am all about witty marketing!
The party started at 6pm & I was surprised but happy to see that most people did not arrive fashionably late and the majority of the 100+ crowd was there before 7pm. Upon entering the event I was greeted by friendly staff members of Meet Market Adventures (MMA) who patiently explained the evening agenda individually to each arriving registered guest.
The crowd was very diverse & I was pleasantly surprised at the age variation as well. The conversations got underway immediately due to the “Bingo Card” objective. Each person had to find a member of the opposite sex and ask them one of the questions on the card. If they said yes to any of them, their name was filled in on the square. This scenario was a great ice breaker & not only got people intermingling, you found out their name and a small detail right away about each person. One of the questions was “Do you have a tattoo” and another one was “have you met someone famous.” Of course there could be many variations as far as the questions go & they might not have been so PG rated if I had been in charge…baby steps though right?
Ceili’s venue was appropriate for the event & allowed for an open sky scenario & great patio feel. As with many events, there are always groups of girls sitting together chatting, but the MMA organizers did their best to get everyone moving & talking to each other. Some guests were much more outgoing than others and mingled easily which helped the more introverted people come out of their shells. There were appetizers & veggies until 7:30 pm which is stated on the website event page for Vancouver. This is included with the $20 event fee.
Meet Market Adventures was originally founded 12 years ago by Travis Hartley as “Adventure in Toronto” which he later changed to a singles company. MMA now boasts over 100,000 members in 6 cities and will be expanding further. Right now the cities are New York, Ottawa, Winnipeg, Calgary, Toronto & Vancouver. (There are 10,000 members at the Vancouver location.)
Speaking with a guest named Andrew at the patio party; he explained the differences with some of the events he has attended and what his preferences were. While he enjoys the party type atmosphere and the larger group, he finds more in common with the “adventure activity” meetups like rock climbing or hiking the Grouse Grind. He feels that he has more in common with those people because they obviously enjoy the same sports. It automatically gives them a common bond. The diversity at a party is more of a challenge and alcohol can be a negative factor occasionally. (Especially for non drinkers.)
Troy, another guest I spoke with, loved the events and has been to quite a few of them. He said that the party venue or activity offered will definitely lure different crowds to each one. Meaning that the chances of meeting different people all the time is one of the greatest assets of MMA. He also said it can be good for business networking even if you don’t make a romantic connection and that new friendships are definitely a possibility. I met a great woman from New York who was in Vancouver going to Simon Fraser University. It was her first event and she enjoyed the evening very much.
I appreciated my time chatting with the guests at the party & I found everyone to be receptive & open to conversation. There weren’t too many wall flowers hanging around in the corners & most people made an effort to mingle to some degree. I didn’t notice any major love connections being made from where I was but that is not to say that a few phone numbers were not exchanged. The MMA website also has Free Online Dating, Singles Vacations & Match Making opportunities. It is a one stop shop for singles in every scenario!
The evening at Ceili’s evolved in a warm & progressive manner with all of the guests enjoying the social aspect that MMA provided. I would definitely recommend a visit to one of the adventure events offered on the website. At the very least you will find something in common with people at these outings and have someone to do them with. This is especially wonderful for people new to Vancouver wanting to see what the city has to offer but doesn’t want to do it alone. (You never know if someone has a friend that may be a romantic connection for you down the road.) The more people you meet, the better!
So for all of you, who complain about the lack of dating in your life, wipe off the cobwebs, get off your couch & do something about it. Go with the attitude that you will meet new people and don’t be disappointed if you’re not planning your wedding venue after the first few MMA events. Learn how to communicate with others & offer the fun side of yourself. The only way things are going to improve in this city, is for people to stop being judgmental and by trying new things that are available to improve Vancouver’s dating reputation.
Everyone has a story & has something to offer but it shouldn’t always be about having unreasonable checklists. Most of us do not end up marrying the flawless person we have conjured up in our unrealistic minds. Be open, look beyond the physical and maybe just maybe you might be surprised at who actually ends up turning your head down the road.
~ Check out the website at Meet Market Adventures in Vancouver & see what events & activities are available on the calendar ~ http://www.meetmarketadventures.com/singles-in-vancouver-bc-singles-events.html Happy Dating Everyone ~ Let me know how it goes!
Susan McCord @ http://www.youtube.com/twobeavers