MeetUp.com is a useful site, but it comes at a literal price: MeetUp charges organisers (and maybe attendees in the future) for what is just a simple group page. This is unfair on the organisers, who are forced to either pay it themselves or charge their members.
There are better, fairer alternatives available, and the more we use them the better they become.
GetTogether is a free open source event management site. Groups are called “teams”, and the site automatically searches for teams and events near you.
It’s still very new and most of the events are currently related to software development, but anyone can set up a team and events for any topic.