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Okay, so you've decided to start up a gaming group. But where do you play? A good place to game really only needs a table, chairs, space to play, and access to a bathroom. Everything else are just nice things to have. Of the necessities, though, the most important is space. You need enough to not only hold your group, but also all the things that are necessary (and sometimes unnecessary) for your game. Things like dice, maps, books, chips, etc.
Of course, the best place to game is your own place. But sometimes it just is not possible to hold the game there due to lack of space, parental/roommate intolerance, distractions, etc. If this is the case, first try to get one of your gaming buddies to host it. You might even want to alternate hosting among your group. If that is not possible, here are some suggestions for alternative locations.
Perhaps the most ideal second choice would be a gaming store. They generally have tables arranged in an optimal placement for just this purpose. These stores also tend to be a little more understanding than most other places. After all, gamers are their livelihood. In addition, it is a good way to attract new players to your game. As a bonus, some of them sell snacks and refreshments so you do not have to leave the store. If you play on the weekends, this is a great choice, as the stores keep late hours. If not, you will have to work around their hours of operation.
If you are fortunate enough to have good weather much of the time; try going to a park. Most parks have picnic tables and benches available for public use. You could even just spread out a blanket and sit on the grass. Of course, if you plan on a marathon gaming session, keep in mind that many parks close around sunset.
If you are having trouble locating a suitable place to game, do not despair, there are other options. Do not overlook resources available to you. If you are a college or high school student, there are typically a number of conference rooms, tables, or other places where groups can gather. College Libraries often have study rooms, and a Student Union buildings generally have lots of tables, couches, and chairs available. Just try to make sure you are not disturbing anyone else, especially in the library.
Check your local community listings. Many times, libraries and other locations (such as Utility companies and hotels) will have meeting room facilities open for public use at little or no cost.
If you live in an apartment complex, find out if your complex has a facility available for parties or other gatherings. In some cases, the management will only charge you a refundable deposit fee for use of the room.
When all else fails, try other business establishments. Starbucks or other similar coffee shops work well. Just make sure that you patronize the establishment. They tend to get upset if you do not.