Class reunions don’t always have a lot of money to work with so when it comes to decorations, volunteers have to be very creative. In this article, we present ideas on ways to decorate a class reunion without spending a lot of money.
In order to make things easier (and cheaper), it is best to start decorating with a theme in mind. Doing so will provide direction and a color scheme to work with.
Establish A Theme
Most class reunions will use a theme related to the decade they graduated, music from their era(Michael Jackson and the 80’s), or an event of historical significance (Civil Rights Movement).
Once a theme is selected, putting together the rest of the decorations should be fairly simple.
When decorating for our class reunion, it would be safe to assume that you don’t need anything elaborate. People are coming to visit and catch up friends so the decorations don’t have to be over the top.
For our class reunion, we did the following:
- Created A Class Reunion Banner
- Posted Classmate Photos
- Decked The Walls With School Spirit
- Added School Memorabilia
- Balloons and such
Let’s go over each one individually.
Create a Reunion Banner
An inexpensive way to decorate is to create a class reunion banner. These can be made by a local printer, or you can buy them online.
Vistaprint.com is a website where you can create a great looking class reunion banner. Customizing them is as simple as using a template or using colors from your school. The banner should welcome classmates and should include the name of school and year of graduation (E.g. Welcome Class Of ’86).
Having tons of photos is a big help when decorating for a class reunion. There are so many ways that you can use them and we have listed some below.
Then and Now Photos – Use photos from your class yearbook and put them up against current photos for every classmate that is attending. Use two sided tape to stick these photos on the walls of the banquet room. As classmates enter, they are going to start walking around the whole room looking for names they recognize. This also helps in recognizing someone that you may not have seen in a couple of decades.
Photos From School Dances, Plays, Prom – Print large poster sized photos of large group events like the Prom, or a class play or any event that has a group photo of a large amount of classmates. Enlarge these photos and post them on the wall.
Remember that the school is not the only resource for these photos. Your classmates will be a far bigger source of pictures and many will be more than happy to share them. Just make sure that you label them properly and return them to their rightful owner once the reunion is over.
Other photos you can use are:
- School field trips
- Football games
- Team photos (Basketball, baseball, etc)
- Pep rallies
- Even those annoying fire drills (If anyone has them)
- Principal, teachers (Enlarge these and post them on the wall)
Deck The Walls With School Spirit
Decorate the room by strategically placing school related gear all over. Hang a school jacket (The ones that the football team used to wear), trophies, medals, uniforms, cheerleader outfits, or pompoms to remind people of their past.
Again, you can get most of these items from your classmates. Just ask for them on the Class Reunion Website and volunteer to pay for the postage.
You can even have the school provide a mascot for the occasion. If a mascot is not available, then create posters with the school logo, or a mascot to personalize the event.
Add a table with articles, and newspaper clippings about your school. You can find local articles about your school on the internet or in the neighborhood library. Use news stories that would bring a smile to people’s faces (Like a big win against an opponent or a big award that the school got). Use political election buttons, old magazines, and textbooks too.
Alternatively, display uniforms of the major sports teams of the time and any trophies won during the four years of school. Add a cheerleader uniform, graduation cap and school banner.
Seeing these things will create a yearning for a past that many will have forgotten. Don’t be surprised if you hear shrieks and see some tears on this night.
Have posters on the walls that remind people of what was going on around the time you graduated. Did you graduate at a time of war or when the computer was invented? Did you graduate when we landed on the moon or when Michael Jackson was creating platinum records? Use any kind of news articles that will remind classmates of what was going during the years that you were in school.
On a separate table, consider having items that no one uses anymore. How about a VCR or a record player? Or a specific kind of sneaker, clothes, or jewelry that was popular when you were growing up. If you can’t find these, then create a poster “Do You Remember Wearing” Or “Our Favorite Movies Were”. There are so many different posters that can be created that once you get started, you will find it hard to stop.
Balloons, Streamers, And Centerpieces
This is the first traditional decorations item we have mentioned and it is just in passing. Use balloons, streamers, Mardi gras beads, confetti, and pinatas to make the occasion more festive. Have balloons arranged in an arch at the entrance and then have them adorn the walls too. Balloon colors should match school colors so that the look of the class reunion is complete.
For centerpieces, go to any dollar store and look at what can be used on your tables. It’s a cheap alternative to buying expensive floral arrangements.
While the above ideas may not sound like decorations in the traditional sense, remember that your class reunion is about people, not things. In decorating for the class reunion, you are looking to create an ambiance where you stir memories of a long forgotten past. Using the ideas above will certainly accomplish that.
What should you read next?
Since you’re planning a class reunion, why not get some great tips to help you organize the event.