In order to plan the details of your reunion, you must begin by selecting the day and location for the gathering.
To ensure that all of your relatives are able to attend, try to plan your reunion at least a year in advance. Better yet, select a few dates and times to send to your guests in order to pick a day that works best for the majority.
2. Ask for Help
Once a date has been set, reach out to those attending and request for volunteers to divide and conquer the tasks ahead.
There is power in numbers, so do not hesitate to recruit help and delegate jobs on the to-do list. Being “large and in charge” will allow you to manage the event, contact your help on a regular basis, and check items off as they are accomplished.
However, be careful to not have too many chefs in the kitchen.
The smaller the guest list, the smaller the circle of help; the larger the reunion, the more help and/or committees that are needed.
Photo by STIL
3. Organize Your Progress
Whether you are organizing RSVP’s, vendor contracts, or contact numbers, try to store all reunion information in a place where you and your recruits are able to access it easily.
Having these items accessible on a computer or smart phone might make running errands and updating your volunteers in a more convenient manner.
Photo by Sharon McCutcheon
4. When you plan a family reunion: Budget, budget, budget
Your family reunion budget can either make or break your guest list.
If planning your reunion sooner rather than later, it is suggested to have your loved ones spend as little as possible from their own pockets.
However, if planning the reunion at least one year in advance, you may be able to ask for a bit larger of a contribution, since family members can prepare a budget themselves.
5. Hope for the Best, Plan for the Worst
If your reunion is outdoors, use AAYS Event Rentals’ selection of pole tents, frame tents, or sailcloth tents, depending on the needs of your guest in inclement weather.
That way, whether you are playing card games or singing karaoke, you can continue enjoying time with the fam.
6. Invite your family via several methods.
How will you notify your relatives of this reunion?
Hard copy invitations via mail, or through a website with a digital RSVP?
Will you include a questionnaire with your invite?
Or perhaps you have decided on a potluck-style feast rather than catering.
No matter the decision, and no matter the catering essentials, the sooner your relatives are invited, the better.
7. Make it fun and Memorable
Consider the age ranges of your get-together. Is it child-dominant, an adult-only party, or a mix of the two?
Present a variety of activities to keep your family members engaged and having fun.
Be sure to keep in mind the location of your party when planning the activities.
Will it be primarily outdoors or indoors?
Aim to have options for both, so that rain or shine, your family members will be entertained the entire event.
8. Set the tone for your family reunion
Once your family has gathered together, consider how you want to welcome them. Getting everyone involved in an exciting way will help break the ice between those who may have not seen each other in quite a while. Recruit your volunteers to direct your guests to where they need to be, collect and hang their coats, and explain the agenda for the day.
Photo by Linda Baker
9. Reflect and Reminisce
Perhaps in your invitations to your family members, you asked for old family photos, videos, or trinkets. Take time during your reunion to celebrate these items that represent your family’s ancestry and heritage. Then, create new memories by taking pictures throughout the day to create a photo album or upload to your relatives digitally.
10. Keep in Touch
As your successful reunion comes to a close, be sure to gather everyone’s contact information for a future event.
If you made a website, keep it updated and allow family members access to share about their fun time.
With their permission, you may also include a compiled list of their contact information so they can keep in touch until the next reunion.
And if you pulled off a successful reunion with the help of AAYS Event Rentals, they will want to plan sooner rather than later.