How do you grow your atheist group?
It’s simple, and it doesn’t matter whether you’re talking about a college group, a MeetUp group, or a national organization’s affiliate group.
I’ll quote Dr. Bruce Flamm, an atheist group leader himself:
“Our group started growing when we realized people wanted to go out and enjoy life, not sit sound and talk about Spinoza.”
I’ve sat through a number of those philosophical meetings… ugh. Am I the only atheist who doesn’t give a $#*! about what academics/philosophers have to say about God? So boring (Daniel Dennett, excluded). If it takes more than a Twitter to explain your position, you’ve probably lost me.
The most successful groups I know actually switch off. They may meet every week, but if that’s the case, one week is discussion-based (e.g. how to come out to your family, how to combat a Creationist, etc.)… and the other week is a bar outing, or a bowling night, or atheist karaoke.
That’s all in addition to putting on events, doing volunteer work, or listening to a speaker.
Another benefit to “actually doing stuff”: younger people might come to your meetings.
Anyone else have better suggestions? What does your group do that works so well and draws in a bigger atheist crowd?