Apr 12, 2012

Organising a Family Reunion

There is no better way to catch up with relatives and strengthen the branches on your family tree quite like a family reunion. Planning the reunion, however, is no small task. Organising a time when all of your family members are going to be available, finding a place that everyone can get to, and providing the kind of entertainment that will please all ages, can be extremely difficult. When it’s all said and done, having put on a successful family reunion is a very rewarding experience. Here are some tips to make it a party that your family will talk about for years.

Garner Support

Before you start the planning process, contact all your relatives to get a clear sense of popular opinion. Do your family members want a reunion? Is there anyone willing to help you plan? Does anyone want to host it at their house? Opening a dialogue with family members will also give you a sense of when people can attend, how many will attend, where people are willing to travel to and what kinds of activities people like. Once you have established initial contact, it will be easier for you to maintain the interest of family members throughout the planning process.

Selecting the Type of Reunion

Most reunions can be broken down into two basic types: one-day events such as a picnic or barbeque, and multi-day events that last for a weekend or more. If most of your relatives reside in the same general area, then more frequent one-day events will be easier for you to plan. If you are going to have relatives travelling from far-away places to attend the reunion, however, plan something more elaborate to make the trip worthwhile for them.

Choosing a Time and Location

Where and when you decide to hold the family reunion will depend on the opinions you collected earlier. The location and date you choose should be the ones that work for the majority of relatives. Popular locations include where largest number family members reside, the original family hometown, or simply the location that will be easiest for you to work with.

Make It Official

Once you have selected the time and place, make it official by sending out invitations, emails or even making a group on Facebook. The earlier you do this, the better, as your family members can get the necessary time off work and start making their travel plans.

Plan Away!

Now you have your guest list as well as an official date and time for your family reunion, it’s time to get started on the details. Make a list of all the things you will need to take care of in the lead-up to the big day, such as contacting the caterer and hiring all the necessary party supplies. Start thinking about what activities and games will be fun for people, and get to work planning the fine details. Consider what extras you will need such as streamers, flowers or specially made t-shirts for everyone who attends.

Family reunions are a really fun way to catch up with family members that you don’t see very often, so even though organising one is very time-consuming, it will be worth it to see your whole family together again. 
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