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16th National Family Reunion Conference
March 15 - 18, 2007
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The Family Reunion Institute and the Pennsylvania Department of Tourism invite you to the 16th National Family Reunion Conference. The Family Reunion Conference is the national meeting ground for family leaders.  Family reunions are a renewed focus for individuals who want to strengthen the bonds of their extended family.
This unique national conference is an excellent opportunity to start, strengthen or revive your reunion. This three day conference is filled with innovative ideas and practical how-to solutions specially designed to make your next reunion the best one yet.  

You will:

  • Renew and refresh your commitment to your family
  • Discuss family reunion practices in depth 
  • Network with other families from across the country
  • Exchange ideas with experienced reunioners
  • Get special planning tips from convention bureau, hotel and travel experts. 
    Human Service agency workers and consumers are also encouraged to come to learn how to use the family reunion concept and experience family strengths

*Note:The schedule and workshops are subject to change.

Thursday, March 15, 2007
1:00 –2:00 PM            Early Registration (for workshop participants only)
Early Bird Workshop
2:00 – 5:00 PM            Preserving Memories:  Scrapbooking
6:00 – 9:00 PM            Preserving Memories: Quilt Making   

Friday, March 16, 2007
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM            Registration
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM            Marketplace Open
9:30 AM – 10:00 AM        Welcome Remarks
10:00 AM- 11:30 AM        Workshops: First Session
          Finding the Rest of Me
          Telling the Story: Beyond Trees and Charts
          Spirituality and the Family Reunion

12:00 - 12:45 PM       Lunch
12:45 - 1:45 PM         Welcome
Keynote Speaker: Kenneth Gamble: Co-founder of the “Philly Sound”, co-founder of Universal Companies and the Universal Plan for Urban America 

2:00 - 3:30 PM          Workshops: Second Session

Does It  Run in The Family?Promoting Health at Your Reunion:
Preserving Family Treasures
Family Online: com
From and Back to China: How Grandmothers Stories Kept Us Connected
Family Empowerment

3:45 - 5:15 PM          Workshops: Third Session

Raising “ISM” Proof Children
DNA and Your Roots
Measuring ROE: The Value of Your Family Reunion Event
Guess Who’s Coming to the Reunion?
Philadelphia Historical and Cultural Resources

5:30 - 7:00 PM       Welcome Reception
6:30 PM                   Leave for King Tut Exhibit; for persons who signed up
7 PM – 9:00 PM      King TUTANKHUMAN and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs Exhibition at The Franklin Institute
More than 3,000 years after his reign…the lost treasures of a boy king come to Philadelphia in a dazzling, once-in-a lifetime exhibition.  See more than 130 amazing treasures belonging to TUT and his royal relatives, many never before seen outside of Egypt.

Saturday, March 17, 2007
8:00 - 9:00 AM          Continental Breakfast and Speak Out
8:00 AM –12 PM       Registration
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM    Marketplace Open
9:00 - 9:30 AM           Meet the Sponsors
9:30 - 10:30 AM         Linda Goss, Story teller

10:45 AM - 12:30 PM            Workshops: First Session

           Saving Stories:  How to Make Your Family Reunion Last a Lifetime
           Latino Family Reunions: A Way  to Keep Families Healthy and Strong
           DNA and Your Roots-
           Organizing the Family Reunion
           Electronic Scrapbooking –

12:45 - 1:45 PM          Lunch
1:45 - 2:30 PM             Keynote Speaker:  Angel Ortiz  Former Councilperson and community activist for the rights of all people.

2:45 - 4:15 PM            Workshops: Second Session

           Saving Stories: How to Make Your Family Reunion Last a Lifetime
           Measuring ROE:  The Value of Your Family Reunion
           Engaging Youth at the Family Reunion
           Electronic Scrapbooking
           Does It Run in the Family? Promoting Health at Your Reunion

4:30 - 5:15 PM           Conference Drawing
6:00 PM                      On your own

Sunday, March 18, 2007
9:00 – 11:00 AM           Breakfast with Birmingham


16th National Family Reunion Conference

Our pre-conference workshops focus on Preserving Memories

Preserving Memories: Scrapbooking
How many times have you wished you had images of unique events and celebrations at family reunions?  Family reunion scrapbooks are delightful projects for members to capture and create memorabilia of your reunions. This workshop will demonstrate creative ways to preserve special memories. Bring photos and other small memorabilia that you can use to learn innovative scrapbooking techniques.

Quiltmaking:Stitching together your family’s heritage
Have your reunions produced story quilts that are collections of symbols, images, and events that record the history and heritage of your family?  This workshop will explore how to turn memorabilia into scraps of fabric and scraps of fabric into family heirlooms.  An internationally famous quilt museum will provide the instruction.


Finding the Rest of Me
There is an explosion of resources for exploring your family’s roots. Your family history provides a legacy and tradition to be shared for generations. In this workshop genealogists present basic ideas to start researching your family history and are joined by representatives from the National Archives. Learn how to best utilize the wealth of records and resources they will share.

Spirituality and the Family Reunion
The Family Reunion Institute often describes the family reunion as very spiritual, well beyond the worship service. It is so much a part of the reunion that many families don’t recognize it. What are the elements of your reunion’s spirituality?

Does it Run in The Family?Promoting Health at the Reunion
Have you ever wondered why diseases appear in some families and not in others? What was the health problem one of your grandparents had that no one would talk about or name?Understanding family medical history is a major step toward living a healthy life. Use a tool kit that will empower your family to share health information several interesting ways. Then learn how to plan a health workshop for your next reunion.

Preserving Documents
We’ve made our quilts and scrapbooks, taken photos and collected family historical documents.  We even have artifacts we’ve inherited.This workshop’s focus is on how you can make these items last a long time by preserving them with special materials and methods.

Technology is forever evolving and changing the way we view, communicate and interact with the world. Use the internet to increase connections within your family.  Computers allow you to research family history, create a family website, circulate information, send greetings and reminders of family events.   Learn how in this workshop.

From and Back to China:  How Grandmothers’ Stories Keep us Connected. An Immigrant Experience
As brother and sister travel from Hong Kong to Guangzhou province, an informal family reunion happens through the grandmother’s stories. Questions that needed to be asked and answers to be discovered about family legacy and struggles unfold and keep the family close even though separated by two continents.

Raising “Ism” Proof
Are you prepared to deal with the negative messages, teasing, bullying and put-downs your children encounter? This workshop will demonstrate how you can use pictures, poems and music to create a sense of safety and protection from threats.   The workshop will demonstrate how to use an “isms” workbook to build young people’s coping skills that neutralize the “isms.” Methods for developing “isms” workshops at your family reunion will be discussed.

DNA and Your Roots
DNA is one of the fastest-growing ways to link an individual's history to the past. Discover this fascinating genetic structure and use it as a scientific breakthrough to trace your family roots. Learn how you can use new DNA technology to pinpoint your ancestry.  Hear what one family reunion will do after determining through DNA where they came from.

Measuring Return on Event (ROE):  What is the Value of Your Family Event?
In this workshop you will discover how to quantify the value of your family reunion by measuring the economic, social, cultural, political and ecological impact. Participants will learn how to measure direct spending, how to use the multiplier effect to qualify your reunion’s economic value and how to use the triple bottom line strategy to strengthen your negotiating power.

Telling the Story (Beyond Trees and Charts)

This workshop describes fun and interesting ways families use to tell their history at the reunion. We will demonstrate how families have created their own family crests and logos. Apart from making quilts (earlier at the conference), we will demonstrate and explain how they also document family history.

Guess Who’s Coming to the Reunion?
A look at many kinds of family diversity. What issues arise at the reunion?  How do we behave toward adopted children or those who live different lifestyles? Does it matter? Are we supportive?

Family Empowerment
All our workshops have the underlying message of strengthening the extended family. This workshop takes a step further into family growth and development. How does a family go about making a business a collective venture? Should the family become a non-profit? If you think it’s hard to invest collectively as a family, come hear how one family did it.

Philadelphia Cultural and Heritage Sites
Learn ways to incorporate Philadelphia’s wealth of cultural and authentic sites to enrich and enliven your family reunion.  A panel representing museums, historic sites, parks and tour providers will share their excitement about family programs they provide to make your reunion a unique experience.



Saving Stories:  How to make your Family Reunion Last a Lifetime
In this informative, interactive, hands-on workshop, you will learn how to preserve family heritage and save life stories in a family reunion setting. Learn to tell stories using photographs, heirlooms, music, tastes and smells and effective interviewing techniques. Please bring a special family photo to the workshop. 

Latino Family Reunions:  A Way to Keep Families Healthy and Strong
This workshop will provide an understanding of the trauma associated with immigration; the biological, psychological and social effects on the individual. Latino families value personalismo, respecto, and familismo, therefore, they tend to prefer support in problem solving through family and allies of the family.  How can family reunions help preserve this critical family resource? 

Organizing the Family Reunion
This workshop will explain everything you need to know to move your reunion from a thought to an actual event. Included is information about making Convention and Visitors Bureaus part of your planning and how to negotiate with hotels.

Electronic Scrapbooking
Methods and tools for using personal computers to create and maintain a family scrapbook online, a cost-effective way to produce permanent family records and to distribute to family members via CDs and the internet.

Engaging Youth at the Family Reunion
A panel of teens tells how they are involved in their reunions, what kinds of things teens and young people like to do and an adult tells the secret of how her reunion keeps young people coming.

Repeated from Friday

Does It Run in the Family?
DNA and Your Roots
Measuring ROE: What is the Value of Your Family Event?



Breakfast with Birmingham
The conference isn’t over. We’re in for a very special treat hosted by the Greater Birmingham (Alabama) Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. You probably won’t have had a breakfast like this in recent years where the activity includes sharing memories of your extended family. The morning includes live music with a great trio!

For brochure and information call 215-204-8703; e-mail; or write The Family Reunion Institute, School of Social Administration, 1301 Cecil B. Moore Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19122.

Conference fees include
The conference includes twenty-two workshops to choose from; two breakfasts, two lunches and a welcome reception; vendors, exhibitors and a conference booklet; two keynote speakers; a renowned story-teller; a one year subscription to Reunions Magazine; and a Speak Out session where participants network, exchange and share information about individual experiences and issues not covered by workshops.

Conference Rates
Reduced conference rates are provided to families or non-profit groups registering four or more participants, as well as to seniors and students with valid identification.
Participants can register for the full conference, or for Friday or Saturday events only.

Full Conference -- $195
Includes admission to all events, Thursday pre-conference workshops, Friday, Saturday and Sunday activities. Welcome reception, two continental breakfasts, two lunches, keynote speakers and reception.

Special full conference rate -- $145 per person
For families or organizations registering four or more people; full time students and persons over 65

Friday only -- $125 per person
Includes admission to marketplace, workshops, lunch and speaker, and reception.

Saturday only -- $125 per person
Includes admission to marketplace, workshops, continental breakfast and Speak Out, storyteller, lunch and speaker, and conference drawing.

Registration for above prices must be received by February 28, 2007.
After February 28, 2007, add $25.00 to each category.
Cancellation refunds of $50.00 before February 28, 2007.
No refunds after February 28, 2007.
Register online at

Amtrak offers a 10% discount off the lowest available fare to Philadelphia PA between March 12, 2007 and March 21, 2007.
To book a reservation, call Amtrak at 800-872-7245 or contact your travel agent. For discount, refer to Convention Fare Code X37M-905. Conventions cannot be booked online. Offer valid with Sleepers, Business Class or First Class seats with payment of the full applicable accommodation charges. Fare valid on Metroliner and Acela service for all departures seven days a week. Offer not valid on Auto Train.
The Avis Worldwide Discount (AWD) Number is J995448. Call Avis directly at 800-331-1600 and use this AWD number to receive the best car rental rates available.

Hotel  Reservations
The 16th National Family Reunion Conference will be at the Marriott Philadelphia Airport Hotel. For reservations, call 800-228-9290 by February 22, 2007.   $109.00 per night plus tax.  Refer to the Family Reunion Conference.
The Marriott Hotel is within walking distance of the Philadelphia International Airport, Terminal B. The regional rail to and from the Amtrak station at 30th Street and to downtown Philadelphia is also close by. Complimentary parking is offered at Garage C in a secure environment directly connected to the hotel.

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