But you shouldn't forget offline social networking. (You know, the real world activities people used to engage in during the olden days before the internet completely took over our lives!)
Of course, you can use the big social sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin to find get-togethers in the real world. However they do lend themselves much more to online networking.
One site that is much more focused on offline activities is Meetup. Joining this site could be a really good move for anyone with a locally oriented business website or blog. For those in Perth, where I live, there's this group. I might even go there myself some day.
I'm surprised that there aren't many other sites like Meetup. But Zenergo looks like a new and promising social networking site with more of an offline focus.
Of course there are plenty of other ways to network with locals in your niche. I just did a search for "meet bloggers in Perth" and several seemingly independently organized events popped up (mostly mentioned on blogs -- funny, that!).
You could even organize and promote such a gathering yourself. Not only would the event itself be a great way of making valuable contacts in your locality and niche, but just the act of writing about it on a blog could actually be good linkbait.
Firstly, you might get some bloggers linking to the details about when and where it will be held. Then if you took some photos and/or videos at the actual get-together and posted them afterwards, that content could generate still more links down the track.