Amy, also known as Mom Advice, lives in Indiana. She is a writer, wife and mom to two beautiful children. On Snackpicks she shares her easy entertaining tips and advice for all occasions, from holiday parties to day-to-day family meal planning. Amy is also the founder and creator of the Mom Advice community.
Thanks to social networking websites, texting, and email, staying connected to my family is easier than ever. However, even with all of these resources available, nothing could replace those times of togetherness and the company of my loved ones in person. Family reunions can offer a time of celebration of love and family in a wonderful and unique way.
Planning a great family reunion does take effort, but it will create a lifetime of memories that your family will long remember. Here are just a few tips to help you plan a successful and memorable family reunion.
1. Setting the Date
The hardest part of planning a reunion is selecting a date for your reunion that you can all agree upon. Plan your date six months to a year in advance so you can have the best attendance at your event. Holiday weekends like the Fourth of July, Memorial Day, or Labor Day are great options for family members that are working or are in school, but your venue must be reserved well in advance of your date.
2. Sending Out the Invites
Send out an invitation to your guests as soon as your location and date has been decided upon. Electronic invitations can help you easily keep track of your RSVP's to your event and also are free to send through sites like Evite.com or PunchBowl.com. Paper invitations can really incorporate your decided theme and take your event to the next level. Be sure to include a map of your location, what each guest should bring with them, what to wear, and any local information they might need (aiport, car rental, nearby hotels, etc.).
3. Selecting the Venue
Select a venue for your event that will be easy for your guests to get to and that will also be affordable. If it is a short reunion, look into a hotel that has a banquet facility, restaurants where you can reserve a room, parks with a covered eating area, or churches where you can rent out a space. For longer reunions, consider a vacation rental property that can accommodate overnight guests and that will be affordable by dividing the cost of the rental property.
4. Planning The Menu
Once you have decided upon your date and location, consider what types of food you would like to have at your event. If the event is centrally located, ask family members to bring a "family favorite" dish or if you need inspiration, check out these recipe collections for menu ideas: Family Reunion Dessert Recipes, Summer Appetizers, Summer Dips and Spreads and BBQ Recipes. And don't forget to have plenty of easy to grab snacks like Keebler/Cheez-It Variety Packs™ and 100 Calorie Right Bites Variety Packs™ for people to munch on throughout the day.
5. Make A Game Plan
Plan a few fun activities that will really capture the essence of family while you are all together. For example, have each family member bring a picture or an object that is sentimental to the family and gather these items for a family time capsule. Time capsules can be purchased or you can put the items in a decorative box that can be brought out for the next family reunion that you have together. If your event is centrally located, hold a recipe contest for the "best pie" or the "best family dish" that everyone can vote upon at your gathering. Another fun family game you can try is a fun game of, "Guess Who?" but family style! Have your guests email you a picture of them from when they were a child. Print out copies of the pictures and make it a party game to Guess Who? is in the pictures.
Whatever you do and wherever your reunion is held, the important thing is that you are all together! While you are together celebrating, here are two great recipes that would be just perfect for any family gathering! For more great recipe ideas check out the Family Reunion Dessert Recipes Slideshow.
Looking for a fun treat that the kids will flip for? These Magic Pretzel Wand Treats™ will be a hit with children of all ages. Consider setting up a station with different colors of frosting and sprinkles so the children can decorate their own treats together!
Want to be the winner of the family’s recipe contest?
This Strawberry Lemon Pie would be the perfect pie to tote to your family reunion. Nothing says summer like the sweet and tart combination of strawberry and lemon. You are sure to come home with the blue ribbon with this recipe!