It might sound like a very daunting experience but members have found that almost to their disappointment most people who come to the meet-ups are boringly safe and normal. I say most, everyone who survived and remembers the events of the Scottish meet-up of Halloween 2007 are now a hardened crew. Some are sadly no longer with us, and some still suffer flashbacks.
The first official Morningstarr* gathering took us to Alton Towers in Staffordshire during the summer of 2007, a good dozen or so of us met and have since become firm friends. Even the ones who were too tight-fisted to actually enter the theme park and after turning up to have a gawk and drop their offspring off headed into the bright lights of Ashbourne for some real excitement. It was all about the kids that day, no booze or grown-ups nonsense, just a few fast rides and rubber dinghy rapids, bro.
Later that same year the legendary piss-up in Aberdeen took place, a benchmark for all future get togethers.
The meet-ups are pretty much an annual affair, our British contingent stretch as far north as Aberdeen right down to the southern-softies in the fruits capital Brighton. Getting everyone together all at the same time isn't always possible so a number of 'mini meet-ups' may occur throughout the year but the main events are slightly fewer and far between.
In 2008 several Scottish members were happy to head south and meet the rest of us in the 'capital of Glasgow' — Blackpool.
The Blackpool trip was something of a stonker. All the members attending had a slap-up meal paid for at one of Blackpool's top casinos, and then a few quid in gambling chips for when we hit the gambling tables until the wee hours. And no one went home heavily in debt or mutilated by the mob — amazing!
In 2009 it was the turn of Nottingham to host the Morningstarr* mayhem. A common theme runs through Morningstarr* meet-ups, full bellies. The forum members are a very diverse bunch, all ages and shapes and sizes but each and every one agrees that the best way to get to know everyone else is over a good plate of hot food and not in some noisy pub. So in Nottingham after a good tour of the city we headed for the Curry Lounge, one of the UK's bestest Indian restaurants. And the food was superb, no denying that, just a bit lacking in hospitality.
The past couple of years the choice of location has been Manchester, mostly because our most social member who insists on meeting up and drinking booze as often as possible lives in that neck of the woods. In fact since this bloody Australian moved to Blighty and started organising the
Sadly new members the Ozzie in question is heading back to the outback so she won't be able to make it to this years shindig. The Morningstarr* is heading to foreign lands again and meeting up in Edinburgh!
Here at the Morningstarr* forums we feel that actually meeting other members is an important part of social networking. What's the point of joining a community and not doing any proper socialising? Back when the forum first began, before every man and his dog was on Facebook, people considered online socialising to be 'weird' or even 'sad'. Now we like to think we're still the weird ones because we actually talk to each other face to face instead of just making status updates. Bonkers.