The Family History Guide features a list of creative ideas and links to aid in planning your next family reunion. You will find them in the “Plan Ahead Activities” section of the Family Activities page in the drop-down menu under “Misc.” This is a great “go-to” place to find a variety of ways to include fun family history centered activities in your reunion agenda. Check out 10 great ideas for family reunions (F2-07) which also includes links to suggestions and ideas on the following sites: (FamilySearch Ancestry MyHeritage, and FindMyPast). You will also find 10 more ideas (F2-08), courtesy of the Lisa Louise Cook website. Learn how to introduce DNA testing to reunion conversations with information from this FamilySearch post. The varied ideas for a successful family history centered family reunion seem endless!
Incorporating family history fun into your planning involves thinking ahead about how you can personalize experiences, activities, and games to center on your ancestors and living family members. One family simply created a game in which the children had to cross an area without touching the ground. The connecting story was about a great-grandmother who immigrated across the sea! Another family loves to play “Fruit Basket” by giving the participants an ancestor’s name instead of a fruit. As they go the middle for a turn at trying to get a seat, they must tell a story (or choose another family member to do so) about that ancestor. Plan activities for all age groups, and have a variety of activities ready to go. For more ideas, see Engaging Family Activities for Your Family Reunion. In this blog post, Wendy Smedley highlights the following activities and more:
Planning a family reunion is a lot of work, but can be a lot of fun as you consider all family members and how to engage them in both the planning and the reunion itself. As family members of all generations collaborate on what would be fun and memorable, and how to make the reunion family history centered, who knows what great ideas will surface?
Remember to keep a digital record of your reunion with photos, videos, written and audio recollections, and all the stories that were told and re-told. Make these available for everyone now and in the future to enjoy. The Family History Guide Memories Section offers instruction for preserving your reunion memories with ease:
Project 2 (FamilySearch) Goals: 1: Gather Your Records 2: Gather Records from Others 3: Interview Relatives 4: Browse Memories 5: Prepare Uploads 6: Add and Tag Photos 7: Add Documents 8: Add Stories 9: Write a Life Sketch 10: Add Audio Files 11: Use the Gallery 12: App Gallery
Follow up throughout the year by reviewing and remembering all the fun times and family connections from your family reunion. The memories of family history activities are often what spark an interest in family history research and in creating more shared experiences that will give hope, courage, and inspiration for years to come.