If it's your turn to plan and organize the next family reunion, don't panic -- the Internet can help you throw the best bash ever! Here are five ways that using online resources can streamline reunion planning and make it a pleasure rather than a pain:
Make a Social Media Page for Your Reunion
This should be a temporary page where you explain the basics, such as where the reunion is being held and how long it will last. This will provide family members with a central place to discuss details of the upcoming event among themselves. For instance, those who are driving may be able to offer an extra seat in their vehicle, and those who live in the community where the reunion is taking place might want to offer their guest room to out-of-town attendees. Basically, the page will provide a convenient catch-all service for everyone involved. After the reunion is over, you can use it as a commemorative page where people can post photographs and discuss the good times that they had at the reunion.
Organize Potluck Details
Traditional family reunions are potluck affairs where everyone brings a dish that they're particularity good at making. Organizing potlucks and keeping track of who's bringing what is easy when you use an online sign-up sheet that all of the attendees have access to. You'll also be able to tell at a glance if all food groups are well-represented and make necessary arrangements to balance things out if they aren't.
Even if potluck is going to provide the majority of the food, hiring help for cleanup will be appreciated by everyone in attendance. If you decide to supplement the potluck fare with catered food and beverages, you'll be able to easily compare prices and services of local catering companies online rather than having to call each one individually.
Print Out Invitations
Even though you can easily send invitations via email, paper invitations are a classy touch, and they're fun to create. There are plenty of online programs that allow you to choose from a large variety of designs, or, if you're the artistic type, you can design the invitations yourself and provide each of the attendees with a precious memento.
Coordinate Lodging Options
Reunion attendees who are coming from out of town will appreciate being provided with several lodging options for the duration of their stay. Keep in mind that even if you or other family members are willing to open up your homes to visiting reunion attendees, many people would prefer to stay in a hotel room -- for those who express that preference, it's best not to push them to do otherwise. Provide them with local hotel rates and let them make their own choices concerning accommodations.
This is probably one of the best perks of organizing your family reunion using online resources. Family reunions can be expensive, particularly if going the catering or banquet route rather than holding a potluck. You can place a donate button directly onto your family reunion website via money-transferring services such as PayPal. This saves you the hassle of having to mention to everyone individually that donations to help cover expenses are appreciated -- and it also spares those who would like to attend but don't have extra funds from having to offer embarrassing explanations.
Personalized hats, t-shirts, and sweatshirts are wonderful ways to provide reunion attendees with meaningful souvenirs. Many companies that provide these services have convenient online order forms, and you can arrange to have the items shipped directly to your home.
Best of all, online resources provide instant communication for everyone involved -- no telephone tag or waiting on snail mail during the coordination process. Good communication circumvents misunderstandings, leaving you and everyone free to make the most of the reunion and enjoy each other's company.
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