How to Organize a Family Reunion
Is it time to bring in your family and have a reunion? Whether your extended family lives close by or far away, holding a family reunion can be plenty of fun and a great way to connect and bond. Here are a few tips to help you pull it all together.
Date and Location
Pick a date and a location for your reunion. Opt for a date that is during warmer weather so you can make use of outdoor venues for your reunion if possible. Choose a weekend to allow out-of-town family members who work during the week to have extra time to travel for the reunion.
Public parks are great choices for locations as they are free, have shelters and tables, and they offer playground equipment for the kids. The only drawbacks are that you have no control over the exact location within the park and there may be large crowds of other groups gathering at the park. Choosing an outdoor venue also means you may need to deal with weather, which can be unpredictable. You may need to also arrange for a backup location in the event of inclement weather.
Check around your area for large meetings room that might be available. Check with local schools, libraries, civic groups and other organizations that rent out large meeting rooms. If you end up renting a location for your reunion, you may need to ask attendees to chip in to cover those costs.
Inform Family Members
Once you’ve chosen a date and location, inform family members about the event. Mail invitations or “save the date” cards to family members a few months ahead of time. When the date gets closer, send RSVP cards so you can (hopefully) know how many will be coming. Include maps to the reunion location for non-local family members.
One month before the date, you may want to send text messages or make phone calls to remind everyone and verify who is coming.
The main draw for your reunion will be visiting and catching up with family members, but you may also want to plan a few fun activities. Games and activities can keep the kids occupied and entertain the adults. Potato sack races, water balloon tosses, volleyball, relays, and the like are all great active games to plan. Simpler activities like family trivia games, bingo, cake walks, and even contests like marshmallow fights or pie eating contests are also excellent choices. You can also give away prizes to the oldest family member present, the youngest, the family member who traveled the farthest.
You may have you reunion catered which will require attendees to chip in or you can do potluck. Assign groups of family members specific food items (desserts, sides, main dishes) to make sure there is plenty.
A family reunion is fun but takes work. Organizing a reunion and pulling it together requires some planning to make it all happen. Follow some of these tips and your reunion will be a hit!
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