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Time for Family Reunions
In generations past, family and friends lived their entire lives in the same neighborhood and successive generations simply took over where their parents left off. It's amazing how all of that changed in a matter of decades. Families are now widely dispersed and this has led to the growing popularity of family reunions. People still want to stay in touch with the cousins, aunts, uncles and siblings on the family tree, if just to see how the newest saplings are progressing.
Here are a few tips if you are planning a family reunion:
Create an effective family reunion committee. Keep in mind that if the committee isn't organized, the reunion will flop!
Choose the length of the event and location. It can be as simple as a one day party held at Aunt Mary and Uncle Joe's house or as elaborate as a weeklong Alaskan cruise.
Buy a guest book (kind of like the ones at wedding receptions) for attendees to sign when they arrive and provide nametags or use your computer to print out nametags for all the attendees.
Whether your reunion is large or small, it's nice to have a "Welcoming address" to kick the thing off. It doesn't have to be long... 5 - 10 minutes unless you have a really good speaker in the family.
One way to really create family ties at a reunion is to create certificates to be passed out to family members. Use your imagination and try to think up as many categories as possible, so that you can recognize the largest amount of family members that you can. Possible recognition categories include these basics:
- The oldest and youngest family members
- Who traveled the least and greatest distances to attend
- Who has attended the most consecutive reunions
- Youngest grandparents
- Couple with the most children or grandchildren
One of the most popular items at many family reunions are the large family charts which show all the family members and how they are related. They start with the ancestor and show all the cousins, aunts, and uncles and other relatives attending the reunion, and lets you see how everyone is hooked together.
Scrapbooking is hot. After your family reunion is over, have the creative person in the family put together a scrapbook of the reunion. Or do the scrapbook thing on a Family Reunion Website.
Most importantly establish a tradition. Keep in touch with the relatives with whom you reconnect at the reunion. And be ready to plan a next reunion. Do not let it stop here.