I have been a member of a few societies over the years. Sometimes I join one when I am focusing my research on a certain area and need look-ups done or I want to receive the newsletters from that particular area.
I have also joined the local societies so that I can meet with other genealogists and learn through the speakers. I had the great luck of living in Monterey, CA for a number of years. We often had Karen Clifford as a speaker and our meetings were held at the Family History Center which had a plethora of books and microfiche available.
I just recently joined the Savannah Area Genealogical Association and have attended 2 meetings so far. It really makes me wish that I had family in the Low Country. The area is so full of historic significance and the cemeteries here are beautiful, but my family didn’t play a part in any of its history. Even if I don’t have any research interest in this area, I still like attending meetings and being around people with the same common interests.
I am also in the process of joining a local DAR chapter. It is going to be a long process, but I’m looking forward to attending the meetings and meeting some other genealogists in the area.