Now and then I think about joining one of the local clubs, but when I look at what they do I always think 'what's the point? why is this better than self-coaching?' I'd like to know if I'm overlooking something, though.
I'm a middle aged recreational runner in the UK who's serious enough about training to read Daniels, LRC training threads etc. in some depth and work hard, but I'm not going to set any records.
Weekly track workouts -- sounds great, but you're following a coach who probably has a different approach to you, or who may even know less than you do. And doing intervals in a group means you're running to someone else's pace not yours. Using a track is good though.
Group long runs -- I can't imagine that making small talk with strangers while running at the group pace rather than your own is enjoyable at all. And from the sound of it there's a lot of faffing about at the start and end too. Don't see the point at all, from a training perspective.
Social events, dinners -- god no!
So, obviously I don't care about the social aspect. Maybe there just isn't anything more to it than that, but I'd hate to discover too late that there was. If you're in a club, especially in the UK, am I missing out or not?