Sean Coates has posted a new entry to his blog today looking at some of his past experiences in the PHP community (from php|architect to OmniTI and now Gimmie Bar) and how knowing people in the community helped him be in the "right place at the right time". Because of this, he recommends the PHP Community Conference as a way to get your own foot in the door and meet the wider community.
Nearly everyone I know and have had a long-term relationship with, in the PHP community, I met at a conference. Sure, I'd often "known" someone from their online persona, but it's hard to really "know" someone until you've spent some face time with them, preferably with a beer or two between you.
He points out that the PHP Community Conference is run by members of the PHP community and has been arranged as a great event to make those new connections (or renew old ones). The conference is happening April 21st and 22nd in Nashville, Tennessee and tickets are currently on sale.