Tips for selecting a location for your reunion
Send out a "Save the Date" flyer or card to remind attendees to calendar the date. This is not the official invitation (which should be sent out about 6 weeks prior to the actual reunion date), but will serve as a reminder of the date. This card/flyer should be sent out as soon as you have solidified your date and location for the reunion.
Location, location, location. When scouting out the best location, consider package deals including room, food and beverage. If booking at a hotel, speak directly with the Director of Sales and negotiate a group rate. Remember to get everything in writing!
Private clubs, hotels or restaurants may be the easiest to consider. They offer complete service and facilities and can generally coordinate all aspects of your reunion. However, you must conform to their availability and scheduling. Private homes and gardens can offer more flexibility with regard to personal desires and time schedules.
ReunionLocation ideas. Other reunion location ideas include: church or synagogue halls, private club facilities, community centers, Elks or Women's Club facilities, Condo or private estate clubhouse facilities, museums, art galleries, historical buildings or mansions, public beaches and parks, public gardens, zoos or amusement parks, movie studio lots, private homes and estates for rent, wineries, ranches or orchards, fairgrounds, racetracks, banks or larger lobbies of grand old buildings, civic or private theaters, bed and breakfast inns, romantic restaurants, hotel ballrooms, yachts, boats or barges, university facilities, military club facilities, a romantic resort, your home or a friend's home, any place beautiful, interesting or romantic in your area.
Other Reunion Tips
Consider your style and budget.
Consider a central place easily accessible to most attendees.
Select a date that is good for as many attendees as possible.
Make sure you see the actual room or location where your event(s) will take place.
Discuss the menu selections and per person cost. Does it include tax and service charge?
Can you order a cake through the property? Can you bring your own? If you do, will the facility charge a cake-cutting fee?
Food stations and buffets encourage people to get up and mix and mingle more than a sit-down, served meal.
Find out what equipment is included and what would be extra. For example, are linens, set up and clean up included? Do you need to rent a dance floor, microphone, sound system, etc? What other audio/visual requirements might you need? How much is it?
Check out music restrictions
Know exactly how long you may have at the facilities: when you can access the site prior for decorating and set up and when you have to end your event. Make sure this time is in writing from site coordinator.
Make sure they have adequate serving staff
Are decorations and flowers handled separately or are they provided? If you bring in your own will their staff set them up? If not, at what time can you gain access to the room to decorate? What are decorating restrictions?
Confirm parking: Is there enough? Do you need to arrange for valet?
Are there ample bathroom facilities for your gathering?
Are there discounts on certain days of the week?
Can you bring in your own caterer or do you need to use theirs?
Are there restrictions on alcohol? If you bring your own, is there a corkage fee?
If outside, are there heaters provided?
Is a security deposit required? If so, how much? When is it refundable?
Budget: Budget: consider all economic levels of reunion attendees. Can a reunion attendee or family member underwrite the whole event or will you need to break down the charge into a per person charge?
Date Date: summertime is generally the most popular because of the ease of taking off work and school for most families
Get organized! Get organized! Set up a binder with sections for each of the following: copies of invitation list and invitations; copies of contracts from hotels; a list of activities planned; Reunion Timetable and to-do lists, etc.
Don't ignore the Internet. There are many valuable websites out there that can help you send invitations online, help you manage your guest list, allow you to check and see who has reserved, who hasn't, etc. Some of these online planners can be found on our Resources Page.
Delegate. Have a reunion committee. Have a reunion attendee who is computer literate and loves to write? Have him/her do a press release in local paper regarding your upcoming reunion. Other committees can include a potluck coordinator, kid's games coordinator, talent show coordinator, babysitters, set up and clean up coordinator, etc.
Set up a Timetable for day of stating what is to be done by when and by whom. Distribute this timetable to everyone on every committee so all know what is going on and what is expected.