Photos by the author
Regardless of your age, class, or location, you probably have struggled to meet new people. In my experience, this fact has proven true for both platonic and romantic relationships. Luckily we live in the age of the glorious and almighty internet, where we can find individuals who are as passionate about weird shit as we are.
The group belongs to Meetup.com, a website that serves as the largest network of local groups. With groups like UFO Roundtable and The Fun and Fabulous Girlfriends of NYC, the site offers a clique for everyone. One summer day while perusing the site, I came across the Staten Island Pug Meetup. I love Staten Island and I love pugs, I thought. Although I don’t own a pug or live in Staten Island, I decided to attend one of their meetups anyway.
Like a mom, Jodi Kronheim, the middle-aged organizer of the meetup, welcomed me to her 11th annual pug pool party. She defied Jersey Shore’s stereotype of Staten Island women with glowing, orange skin, treating everyone at the party like a relative. Some guests might as well have been relatives. Kronheim founded the group in 2004 with her husband, as a way to make friends with people who also love pugs. Ten years later, over 200 people belong to the group—including a married couple that met at a meetup.
“The power of pug love brings people together,” Kronheim told me.
Between the pug swimming races, pug lollipops, and pug-shaped cake, the Staten Island pug pool party was an entertaining event anyone could enjoy. Luckily for everyone who missed the event, I took these pictures.
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