Family reunions are a great time to get loved ones together to reminisce about the past and make new memories. Sometimes they are very low key and other times they are “go big or go home” events. If you have some responsibility in the planning of your next family reunion, here are a few ideas for activities to get you started:
Family Tree Photo Booth
Having a keepsake for each family reunion attendee to bring home with them is important. Ask around if anyone in the family has a Polaroid camera or has a nice printer that can print color photos easily. Set up a printing station on a portable table. Right next to it, create a backdrop where family members can stand and have their picture taken at the event. You can create a simple backdrop with a colorful blanket hung on a wall. Greenery also makes a nice background! As family members arrive, have them smile for a pic. Print the photos off with the instant Polaroid film or the printer.
At a separate table, have craft supplies available for each person to be able to make their own family tree. You can do this however you want. Poster board and construction paper can go a long way here. The idea is to have each member of the family make their own family tree with grandparents, parents and grandchildren using the previously taken and printed photos. Beforehand, print off images of any family members that have passed away so that they can be included in each collage, too.
Family Memory Box
Cut a large amount of paper into tiny strips or squares. Post-its work just as well for this activity, too! Use a large box with a hole cut into it as a depository. Ask family members to write a fun family memory on each piece of paper. Have them remain anonymous when they are done with it. Also, let members write as many memories as they want.
At any give point during the reunion, pin up each memory on a board or tape them to a table for people to come up and read them. Or, you can elect a family member to read them all out loud during a quiet portion of the gathering. This is a nice way to bond and reminisce about the ties that bind and to pass down old family stories to the next generation, too.
Are We Related?
There are many interesting activities that you can do at the family reunion to find out which family members are alike. One idea would be to have each family member take either an Ancestry DNA or 23andMe test prior to the event day. Once everyone receives their results, appoint a date collector to gather all of the info and find out exactly where each family member overlaps on a genetic level. Have that person compile the results and bring them in a form of a printable or PowerPoint to show the family. This can be very neat. For example, do family members that resemble each other have similar DNA breakdowns?
You can do your own survey right at the family reunion instead. Create a simple survey with questions about interests, physical features, likes/dislikes, occupations, etc. Have everyone fill one out at the reunion and at the end write out how many people in the family have unique similarities. Other tests you can have people take are the Myers-Briggs personality and the Enneagram personality test. It will be great to see which family members have similarities and differences.