Keep Your Cool: 5 Tips for Summer Reunion Fun: Part 1 By Lisa A. Alzo, M.F.A.

Summer is a popular time for reunions. Most schools are not in session, and it is often easier to plan vacation time around jobs and other obligations. Hosting a summer reunion can be a delightful way to reconnect with family and friends. Here are five tips to help you plan a comfortable and memorable gathering.

  1. Carefully Choose the Location. Select a venue that can comfortably accommodate your group and is relatively easy to get to and accessible for all guests. Consider parks, a large backyard, or even a beach for a fun summer vibe. Alternatively, consider an air-conditioned house, hotel, or social hall.
  1. Communicate Early and Often.  Send out your invitations early (6 months-1 year). This allows everyone to clear their schedules and make travel arrangements, and budget for the occasion. For annual events, try to have the date and location set for the following year and ready to announce at the current reunion.
  1. Ask for Volunteers. Putting on a successful reunion takes a village. Send out a sign-up sheet in advance to cover tasks such as shopping for food, beverages, and supplies, decorating, organizing a group photo and other activities, and clean-up. Encourage everyone to help keep things neat and tidy throughout the day.
  1. Create a Checklist. A reunion has many parts, and it will be impossible to remember all the details especially with the excitement on the day. Make a digital checklist that’s also printable. Include as many details as possible about attendees, logistics, venue, food, schedule, and activities.
  1. Have a Backup Plan. If your reunion is outdoors, remember that, weather can be unpredictable, so it’s essential to have a backup plan. Renting tents and having large umbrellas will provide needed shade. Check in advance what indoor activity options or spaces are available at hotels or resorts.

Careful and thoughtful planning are the first steps to ensure you can beat the heat for your reunion. In the next Reunions Newsletter, “5 Tips for Summer Reunion Fun: Part 2”will include more ways to keep your cool during your event.