Types of reunions selected with special themes encourages more participation, since celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, graduations and veteran homecomings are joyous, fun, family times that everyone wants to be a part of.
Over the years, many family members may have spread out across the country. When you are able to bring them together through special themes and types of reunions tend to act as ice-breakers for relatives who haven't seen each other in a while or to meet new family members.
Let's look at some of these celebrations and how they are applied to various types of reunions.
Wedding anniversaries are good types of reunions to bring a family together. Families seem to find time to travel to a reunion that is to honor a special family couple.
For a couple celebrating 50 or 60 years together - and this is a MAJOR milestone - they have been through decades that can bring ideas to mind for several special themes.
Let's bring the happy couple back to when they were young - the beginning of Elvis, the time of saddle shoes and poodle skirts for the gals - jeans and t-shirts for the guys with "duck tail" haircuts - don't forget to roll up a pack of cigarettes in the sleeve - but no lighting up please!!
Food choices would include big cheeseburgers, cherry cokes and milk shakes for two - O.K. so the kids like the cokes and milk shakes.
Your activities would include a sock hop and doing the "bop". Don't forget to pass the orange under the chin from one to the other.
Anyone have a '55 Chevy with fuzzy dice hanging from the mirror? You can use this to bring your honored guests to the event.
How about a couple that came through the 60s - the mixed era of Chubby Checker and The Twist in the early part of the decade and the Hippie era of peace signs and flower power from the mid to late 60s and beyond.
The music of the time was from Woodstock, featuring Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones and the Who, among many others.
Everyone wore bell bottom pants, tie-dyed shirts, headbands and love beads.
Yes, it was an era to remember (and some of us would like to forget) but it's a great special themes idea.
What couple celebrating a 30 to 40 year anniversary doesn't remember disco dancing to the Bee Gees.
Every guy wanted to be Tony Minero with his special hairdo and polyester clothes. The gals all thought they could be the special dance partner that would win the dance trophy.
Note: These themes can be used for birthday celebrations as well.
How about revisiting the wedding day of your honored couple.
Put a "bridal" veil on Grandma and give her a bouquet, then put a boutonniere on Grandpa. If they are able, have them do the "first dance".
Make a collage of pictures of the couple on their wedding day and throughout their life together.
Try to find people who were in their wedding party - if they're still around.
You can end your meal with an anniversary "wedding" cake, complete with a bride and groom on top.
Birthday celebrations are special types of reunons that tend to bring a family together, especially if someone is celebrating a milestone birthday like their 80s or 90s. But celebrating someone's 25th or 50th would be just as enjoyable for all - the idea is to gather everyone together.
Decoration ideas can come from your honoree interests, whether it is fishing, golfing, skiing, acting or just "Puttin' On The Ritz".
This idea brings back a time long gone but not forgotten - thanks to old gangster movies and T.V. shows.
Costumes, such as shimmy dresses and flapper hats for the gals and double-breasted suits with fedoras for the guys - machine guns optional! - can really liven up this reunion.
Don't forget the flasks - filled with ginger ale, of course.
A Charleston dance contest would be a great activity; or, how about a dance-a-thon?? - "23 skidoo"
The venue for this type of event would be very nice indoors as a dinner/dance.
Note: You may also want to add a "This Is Your Life" type of program to honor your special guest.
If your special honoree served in World War II and is celebrating a milestone birthday, then a military theme would be great. Who knows how many more birthdays they will have?
Use a 40s picture of your honoree in uniform on the invitation. Don't forget to include the stars and stripes with lots of red, white and blue throughout your decorations.
You may even find out how many of your attendees can still fit into old uniforms.
Food suggestions: Fried chicken, potato salad and "Mom's Apple Pie."
Music = big band, of course, and jitterbug dancing - "In The Mood" anyone?
Other wonderful types of reunions are to celebrate a veteran homecoming - what a way to being everyone together.
Lots of flags, and red, white and blue in your decorations should brighten your event.
This celebration can be held in any type of venue, either picnic, indoors, or any other location - it's just GREAT to have your veteran home.
These types of reunions with special themes are just a few for you to consider. As we move along - you will get ideas of your own to make your reunion unique.