more family reunion ideas...
Cover tables with brown butcher paper and have each family or team design their own tablecloths. You can assign specific themes or topics for each table (for example: Main Course, Desserts, Drinks, OR Past, Present, Future) or you can just set everyone loose to express their creativity. This is also a great way to keep the kids busy throughout the day, but remember to take pictures before their works of art disappear under spills of ketchup, Kool-Aid, and watermelon juice.
Buy some plain t-shirts and have families design their team/Olympic jerseys or have everyone create their own special memory of the reunion. It would be fun to have a t-shirt with family member's “autographs”, children's hand prints, or grandpa's creative art work. And, don't forget to include the year so the family reunion will be forever commemorated in print.
Ask each family to bring photos of important or exciting events that have happened since the last reunion. Gather together a few scrapbooking supplies and make memory albums for each household to take home. This is a great way to share stories and accomplishments, and allow extended family to be a part of cousin Maria's graduation or little Rebecca's dance recital.
No family reunion would be complete without a little embarrassing storytelling. And, the younger generation always enjoys hearing about the interesting antics of their parents or grandparents. You could have a contest to see who can tell the most embarrassing, the funniest, or the most outrageous story, or you can simply ask people to share their fondest memories of particular members. You might even want to hit record on that video player and then make everyone a copy so they can re-live the moments of hilarity and sentiment whenever they wish.
Find out interesting or odd facts about family members and make a trivia game. You might be surprised at some of the new things you learn. Alternatively, you could find a pre-made printable trivia that asks guests to match popular phrases, inventions, movies, or world events with specific family members or generations. Young children will have fun learning the phrases and terms that grandma used when she was a teenager or hearing the music that mom and dad danced to in high school.
Everyone is fascinated by time capsules, and a family reunion is the perfect time to put one together. Have each family (or person) bring an item and share its significance, then lock it away in a capsule that will be re-opened at a later date. It may be several years before the first time capsule is unlocked, but after that – if you have made it a yearly tradition – future generations will be able to revisit the past at each new reunion.
An important part of every family reunion is the food, so why not plan a few fun food activities. Have everyone make their favorite family recipe to contribute to the dinner, and make sure they submit a copy of the ingredients to be included in a family favorites cookbook. You may even want to take a few photos of Grandma's famous shortbread or Mama's deep dish lasagna to add to the newest edition and keep the food alive in the hearts and minds of future generations.
Everyone loves ice cream and scavenger hunts so create a memorable and tasty activity by combining the two for an “ice cream scavenger hunt”. Pair a child with an adult and have them search for all the items needed to make a delectable ice cream sundae. For example, each pair will need to find two sundae dishes, two spoons, a container of sprinkles, a banana, a jar of chocolate sauce, or whatever ingredients you think make the perfect ice cream treat.
If you have a large outdoor area, kids (and some adults, too) will enjoy a candy toss. It's fun, it's simple, and it works for everyone from the smallest toddler to the oldest teen.
From photo jigsaw puzzles, to printable bingo, talent shows and water balloon tosses, games and activities are a great way to bring people together and celebrate life's greatest treasure – family.