Astronomy clubs have their place, but I doubt that even a simple majority of amateurs belong to them at any given time. Human nature being what it is, one can tire of even those with similar interests after a while, especially when one considers the reasons most people join clubs in general: it is usually to benefit themselves in some way, not to be of service to others.
For those of us who are helpful and giving by nature, membership in any such organization can result in a not-inconsiderable drain of time and expertise, especially considering the social skills of many amateurs, which are often sadly lacking; once it becomes known that a member has a skill that is in demand, or a willingness to be of assistance in other ways, the demands placed upon them by the rest of the membership often become unreasonable. It's been my experience that there are usually one or two "spark plugs" in any given club, along with a small number of individuals who do the vast majority of the work; the remaining membership usually consists of users, losers and space cadets whose main priority is themselves.
After far too much time essentially wasted in and on clubs, I am convinced that amateur astronomy is an avocation best enjoyed in a solitary manner, or with very carefully selected friends.
I can't agree at all with these statements (especially the blatant misuse of the stereotypical terms "losers", "users", and "space cadets whose main priority is themselves", when referring to club members). Most people who join a good astronomy club are *none* of these things. One thing I had badly wanted when I first got into amateur astronomy as a youngster was a group of people I could share the experience with. It took several years (and a driver's license), but I eventually found that group (Prairie Astronomy Club) about 40 miles away, and have been a member ever since (about 41 years). The group was just a bunch of regular people who enjoyed going out at night and viewing things. Even when I am at the Nebraska Star Party interacting with people from all over the U.S., I still reserve at least one night with a group of PAC members to view with them, as due to my work schedule, I don't get to attend many of the regular monthly club star parties much anymore (see the picture below). Also, that astronomy club from its earliest days in the mid 1960's was involved in community outreach way before it became more popular among many mainstream astronomy clubs, so I got in on that aspect of the hobby early-on. Sharing the sky with those in the general public became immensely rewarding and not at all "draining". To this day, I still really enjoy those times when I can take my scope out to a public event and show others the wonders that float far above their heads. Eventually, I got tapped into doing this on a more regular and formal basis with a local public observatory, but I still go out on my own sometimes with a few non-club people to show them the sky. I don't object even when a few non-amateurs come by and want to have a look (it got me an article about one of those times published in Sky and Telescope too). I also enjoy the company of at least one other club member when observing, as it helps keep me focused on the sky and observing, rather than the dark loneliness of a rural location at night. Some people just aren't "club" people, and for them, observing alone is OK. However, one of the best things that ever happened to me in this wonderful hobby was when I finally joined the Prairie Astronomy Club. It made all the difference in the world. Clear skies to you.