Ways to make friends: Hobby groups

Make friends who share your passions via these New York City hobby groups, tailored for specialists of all stripes.

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Singing, DIY soap making and neuroscience are just a few of the extracurricular interests you can channel by joining these groups, where you can make friends with like-minded wonks and bone up on your skill of choice.


RECOMMENDED: 50 ways to make friends in NYC


Soapmaking at Make Workshop

Soapmaking at Make Workshop

Diana Rupp’s crafty center draws DIY acolytes of all levels. You’ll not only learn such bragworthy skills as embroidery and sewing, you’ll also have the opportunity to chat with other creative souls. At this 12-person workshop, led by experts from Prem Soaps, you’ll have two hours to talk to your classmates, while stirring and molding batches of cold-processed cleanser.makeworkshop.com. Thu 6 at 6:30pm; $80 plus supplies.

“You work in groups, and everyone has a part to do. It’s a very social environment,”—Michele Bonds, 40, executive assistant; Astoria, Queens

  1. 195 Chrystie St between Rivington and Stanton
Gotham Rock Choir

Gotham Rock Choir

Whether you’re a former chorus nerd or you harbor a secret desire to be on The Voice, it’s time to serenade something other than your conditioner bottle. While this ensemble’s high-profile performances have included singing the national anthem at Madison Square Garden, founder Mark Cannistraro keeps the environment fun and low-pressure. Members from all vocal sections (soprano, alto, tenor, bass) can often be found socializing before and after weekly Tuesday rehearsals. • E-mail gothamrockchoir@gmail.com for meeting location gothamrockchoir.com. Tue 7pm; $7–$10 per meeting. Through December 18, 2012.

“My Gotham Rock Choir friends are among the best in my life. We started out going to karaoke, and now we go to movies, happy hour, brunch and parties.”—Teresa Candori, 46, media director, Harlem

Secret Science Club

Secret Science Club

If your current pals don’t share your interest in the nuances of astrophysics, join up with the devotees of the Secret Science Club. Organizers Margaret Mittelbach and Dorian Devins created a free monthly lecture series for scientists to discuss dinosaurs, neuroscience, black holes and other scholarly topics with upwards of 300 attendees. After each event’s Q&A session, there’s plenty of time for socializing with your fellow nerds. secretscienceclub.blogspot.com. Tuesday December 11, 2012 at 8pm; free.

  1. The Bell House, 149 7th St between Second and Third Aves, Gowanus, Brooklyn
Quilting Workshop: Hexagons at Brooklyn General Store

Quilting Workshop: Hexagons at Brooklyn General Store

Owner Catherine Clark launched knitting and crafting tutorials at her petite craft shop in late 2003, after noticing that informal groups would gather on Friday nights to crochet and converse. At this workshop, which takes place over five two-hour classes, instructor Heather Love helps groups of four to six neophytes make an entire hexagon quilt by hand. Make the most of your time by sharing your experiences (or lack thereof) with others who’ve always wanted to create a DIY gift but never managed to move beyond construction-paper greeting cards. • 718-237-7753, brooklyngeneral.com. December 10, 17, 2012; January 7, 14, 21, 2013 at 7pm; $190 per session.

  1. 128 Union St, (Between Columbia and Hicks Sts)
Intro to Color Work at Purl Soho

Intro to Color Work at Purl Soho

As winter descends upon the city, it’s once again time for the inevitable quest to find a hat that (a) keeps your ears warm and (b) doesn’t make you look like a yeti. At this seminar you’ll make a stylish Fair Isle cap—and up to eight new friends who can supply style advice. Students sit in a group for two sessions of two hours each; if you don’t find your new BFF at the first meeting, there’s plenty of time to bond with other newbies the second time around. Friendly instructor Sophia Lehman strolls around to assist with patterns, so wallflowers can use her tips as an excuse to strike up a conversation with other knitters. • 212-420-8796, purlsoho.com. December 7, 14, 2012 at 6pm; $100 plus supplies.



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