How to Plan an Amazing Family Reunion Party

This is a Guest Post. I only share information that I find fun, informative, or helpful. Enjoy!

Is there anything more amazing than loved ones seeing each other for the first time in months – or even years? Most of us don’t have the opportunity to see all the family members that we’d like to interact with on a regular basis. In fact, for families with members all over the world, it’s common to only see each other at special events – like weddings and funerals. 

That’s why some groups decide to plan family reunions every once in a while, where people can get together and catch up about the things that they might have missed in each other’s lives. If you’re planning your first family reunion, here are some top tips to get you started. 

1. Bring Name Tags 

Don’t force people in your family to deal with the awkwardness of trying to remember their fourth cousin’s name on the spot. No-one likes to be forgotten about, and mis-remembering a loved ones name can cause problems before the party even begins. With that in mind, make sure that everyone has a name tag, and a little descriptor showing who their parents are, or where they’re from in the family. You can even tell people who ask about them that they’re just a formality. 

Name tags are also a fun way to break the ice at a family reunion. You could have each of the people at the event write an interesting fact about themselves underneath their name, like where they live, how many dogs they have, or what they do for a job. This should get the conversation going when people aren’t sure how to get started. 

2. Have Plenty of Games Ready 

Speaking of breaking the ice at family reunions, remember that it’s going to be a little awkward for people to start making conversation initially. There’s only so long that people can mix and mingle before they start to feel a little restless or bored. With that in mind, having games ready to play is usually a great idea. They’ll help to break the day up in between periods of chatter and just dancing to the music you hopefully have on play. 

Depending on the venue you’ve chosen for your big event, you could have outdoor games, like football, or you could make up games that involve everyone in the family – like creating your own version of family guess who. There’s also the option to experiment with things like relay races, or just setting up video games for the whole family. Your venue and the size of the place that you’re going to be celebrating in will make a huge difference to the kind of games you can realistically play. 

3. Share Rules About Gifts 

If people want to bring gifts to a family reunion, then it might be helpful to set some rules in advance. For instance, if someone has a big present to give someone in particular, then it might look strange that they haven’t gotten something for everyone else. Arranging to have private gift exchanges after the main event could lead to a more comfortable party. Sites like GiftCannon have some great ideas for gifts based on peoples interest, so if you’re stuck for ideas, give that a look! 

For bigger gifts that involve everyone, stick to smaller things, like candy from a unique part of the world that most attendees wouldn’t have a chance to visit. You could also take pictures of everyone who attends the big day and create a family photo album on a digital file that everyone can access when the whole experience is over. People who don’t have a lot of cash to spend after flying across the world shouldn’t have to feel awkward about not bringing gifts for everyone. 

4. Plan the Food Well in Advance 

Finally, one of the trickiest parts of planning a successful family reunion is getting the food right. Depending on how many people you have in your family, there’s almost a guarantee that there will be some people who have special requirements when it comes to certain foods. Make sure that you know the situation about how many vegans and vegetarians you’re going to be serving in advance, and double-check about any allergies before you begin arranging the catering. 

The best way to avoid any issues with food is to make sure that you have clear descriptions on every item that you have available on the menu. This should ensure that people can pick and choose the food that’s most suitable to their dietary requirements. Make sure that there’s something available for everyone though – including people who don’t eat certain meats, like fish.


  1. Thank you for the tips! We haven't had a family reunion since I was a child!

  2. I really like these tips! Thanks for sharing!