reunion tips, ideas and advice - 1
School reunion tips
We found these tips for a successful high school class reunion in The Black Chronicle, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Choose a reunion theme and have it in every detail of your reunion, from invitations to activities. For example, a western theme can feature hay rides, Western-themed food, decorations (checkered tablecloths), etc.
Have a welcome night that is casual and intimate with drinks and light snacks. A local pub or small restaurant where you hung out during school days is perfect.
Place disposable cameras at every table and have the disc jockey/band/master of ceremonies remind everyone to take candid photos. After the reunion, post photos on a website and send links to everyone.
Position a reunion display where classmates will enter the main event, with photos, memorabilia, awards, news clippings, yearbook photos, etc.
On nametags, have the person’s photo from the senior yearbook, so that everyone can identify each other more easily.
Produce a “keepsake” publication with photos and an alumni directory.
Balloons are an inexpensive way to decorate for reunions.
Is there a good excuse?
Our good friend and former Reunions magazine editor, Mary Fobian is co-chair of her Oelwein (Iowa) Community High School Class of '69 reunion. One of her responsibilities is the newsletter in which she included the following.
If you are not coming to the reunion, you need a good excuse and a note from your Mom. The following reasons have been tried and are unacceptable.
Excuse #1: I'm overweight.
Rebuttal: You're not alone. Note t-shirt sizes being offered.
Excuse #2: I'm a different person than I was in high school
Rebuttal: Lucky for you, we ALL are. Let's face it: we could only have improved.
Excuse #3 I don't look as good as I'd like. I (choose one or more) am bald, have wrinkles, saddlebags, grey hair and no one will recognize me.
Rebuttal: Guess what! You won't recognize anyone else, either. Using the reunion committee as a representative sample, our whole class looks like a "before" photo in a plastic surgery ad.
Excuse #4: I'm not successful. I'm not (choose one or more) a lawyer, a doctor or rich.
Rebuttal: You'll be pleasantly surprised to find how much everyone has matured. We may be plump and wrinkled (see Excuse #3, above) but we're not stupid. Money is not success.
Excuse #5: I was not in a popular clique in school
Rebuttal: Now that we're old and smart, those cliques have dissolved just like the superficialities they were based on. The only cliques you'll notice at the reunion will be the sound of your joints as you walk around.
Roll away the stone
Here's a grave idea.
A funeral director donated a vault to the Minerva, Ohio, High School Class of 1980 to be opened on their 20th reunion in the year 2000, the month of June, to be specific.
A ghoulish affair?
"It was a lot of fun," remembered class member Lisa Dunlap. Into the vault went school memorabilia: cap and gown, the valedictory speech, a spiral-bound notebook with student predictions for the future, even a bottle of wine for a reunion toast.
As planned, the vault was opened in June, 20 years after graduation. "It was really neat," enthused Dunlap. Unfortunately, some water leaked in, and there was damage, even though everything had been packed in plastic. "We salvaged most of it, though," Dunlap said.
The items generated lots of interest during the class reunion. So much, in fact, that Dunlap said classmates were going to bury more memorabilia for their 45th reunion.
Can you dig it?
In a recent discussion, Paula Sheagley said she often teases that the "perfect side-business" for her reunion company would be a REUNION PREPARATION CENTER!
Imagine the amount of money spent for this once every five- or ten-year event! There is not only the cost for one or two people to travel to this big event plus lodging. Attendees shop for the perfect flattering outfit to wear with impressive accessories, plus the women need a new hair-do, and for heaven sakes ..... don't forget the trip to the tanning parlor for a couple of months and a new set of acrylic nails!! On top of all of this ..... they pay reunion costs and buy mementos (memory books, class pictures, t-shirts). And bar costs. Reunions are known for high bar tabs, probably second to none.
The Reunion Diet: Lose Weight and Look Great at Your Reunion and Beyond by Sandra J. Gordon and Lisa Dorfman
For millions of us, reunions offer a wake-up call.
The Reunion Diet (Sunrise River Press, 39966 Grand Ave, North Branch MN 55056; 800-895-4585;sunriseriverpress.com; paperbound, 176 pages, $12.95) includes a last-minute diet plan for those who may be reading the book without much time remaining before their reunion. Whether you've got 10, 20, 30 pounds or more to lose before your reunion, The Reunion Diet can help you look and feel great when mingling and reconnecting with those you may not have seen in decades.
"Writing a book about getting ready for your reunion seemed so shallow," Dorfman said. But she tracked down about 200 people via Facebook, and realized there are all types — class reunions, family reunions, even workplace reunions.
The authors present diet plans for the amount of time left before your reunion (1 year, six months, and one month). There is a plan for everyone.
Dorfman came up with a slogan: "Life is a series of reunions," she says. "We see people from our past every day."
From a report by Nick Sortal in the Sun Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
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