9 tips for a memorable family reunion

August 4, 2010 at 8:21 pm Leave a comment

By Debbie Frye, General Manager, Flyerland.ca  

A family reunion is a wonderful way to stay in touch with your entire family from near and far. You may think it’s expensive to get the whole gang together, but there are lots of options for hosting this special occasion to suit every budget. Whether this is an annual event or the first time you’re planning a gathering with all your relatives, these ideas will make your reunion an event to remember…and you won’t have to spend your children’s inheritance.

  • Reserve a spot. Determine how many relatives will be attending and choose an appropriate venue—a park, local hall, restaurant or someone’s home. When choosing a public park, contact your local parks and recreation office to find out if you require a permit. Take advantage of summer sales, and stock up all your outdoor entertaining needs at the Bay, Sears or Walmart.
  • Divide and conquer. Planning a family reunion can be a lot of work, so get all the relatives involved. Ask people to handle different responsibilities like food, accommodations, games and more. Create an agenda for the day or weekend, but be flexible too—the idea is to relax and have fun!
  • Camp out. If your reunion is a weekend affair, people will need a place to sleep. Look for bargains on tents, sleeping bags and flashlights in the Canadian Tire flyer on Flyerland.ca. The kids will love camping out with their cousins, although they may not get much sleep!
  • Discover local hotel deals. “Roughing it” may not be suitable for everyone and if you don’t have enough guest rooms, a nearby hotel is a good option. See the Travel section of Flyerland.ca for last minute hotel deals.
  • Get cooking. Feeding the whole crew can be overwhelming, so plan a potluck. Have everyone prepare a favourite family dish and bring copies of the recipe to share. If you receive the recipes beforehand, you can even create a cookbook as a special souvenir. If you’re looking for new recipes, check out Canadian Living Magazine, or check out the Loblaws recipe section online.
  • Play! Organize classic outdoor picnic games like potato sack races, three legged races, and a water balloon toss. You can also find bargains on croquet sets, lawn darts or soccer balls—see the Zellers flyer on Flyerland.ca. And let the games begin!
  • Finish your family tree. Use an online tool to start your family tree, and take advantage of this special occasion to survey family members and fill in the blanks with names, dates and other details.
  • Make a memento. Before the reunion, have all your relatives scan and email fun family photos. Load them on a memory stick, or create a scrap book that can be copied for each family member to create a special memento of the occasion. Michaels has you covered for all your scrapbooking needs.
  • Create a time capsule. Ask family members to bring items such as photos, wedding or birth announcements, newspapers or magazines with important current events, and a letter from each family to be read in the future. Determine who will store the time capsule, how long you will keep it and who will open it—perhaps the infant grandchildren who will be hosting the family reunion 25 years in the future!

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