I can see your thinking, but I need to discuss why it is counter productive to the forum.
I've been working to minimize the LENGTH of the main forum page, I have notice it takes a long time to get from the top to the bottom, this can be accomplished easily by me just by reducing the DESCRIPTIONS of each forum. That will speed up the scrolling on the page. I mention this, although it isn't related to your topic.
Related though is something that is very important: the more forums we create relative to BEEKEEPING TOPICS the fewer we will have in the GENERAL BEEKEEPING FORUM, causing people to have to search all over the forum for topics that interest them and more importantly segregating everyone from (as you said) people even 10 miles away.
On the making of the DOWN UNDER and EUROPEAN/UK FORUMS I think it important Especially for the Down-under people, not as relevant for the European/UK members who occupy very similar weather conditions to those here in the states. I think the sheer numbers of posts in the two forums prove this out. I plan of keeping both of these forums, but generally speaking many of the E/UK posts could easily be placed directly in GENERAL BEEKEEPING FORUM - thus, we have created forums to place "like" topics into.
I'm also looking to consolidate some forums which have very few posts after being active a long time. That is what (and I hate this term) Child Forums are for: creating a like theme that covers similar interests together. I don't want to over do combining forums, but it does have a sense of order and consolidation. Hope that makes sense?
If people have 50 more forums to place posts into, it is unlikely that the posts will be so unique as to call for a "X-STATE" forum when the question could just have the states name in the title and posted in General Beekeeping Forum. I'd much rather see in General someone asking "Anyone in Wisconsin have their first swarm yet?" than have a Wisconsin Forum with that same question in it.
I can't remember the last time I turned down a suggestion about forum categories, and I can understand your thinking, but I can't expand, states (God forbid counties) or more countries, even continents because it just takes away from posting where EVERYONE can participate as they do in General Forum.
Thanks for the idea and please feel free to keep brainstorming.