This article from Aeon articulates how important a community of friends is, which is a good reason for being part of the Greater Newburyport Village.
Here's a pertinent quote: "Holt-Lunstad concluded that being within a supportive social network reduced the risk of mortality by 50 per cent. That places it on a par with quitting smoking, and of more influence than maintaining a healthy BMI measure. Since Holt-Lunstad and colleagues reported their findings, study after study has reinforced this conclusion, to the extent that we can now argue that the nature of your social network, and the strength and health of the relationships within it, is the biggest single factor influencing your health, happiness and longevity. They are your survival."
Read the entire article, titled Treasure Them, in Aeon: