During your first family reunion planning meeting, you are going to need to ask for people to take over different responsibilities.
Ideally, each person that is on the planning committee should head their own committee.
Assigning one person to each area of responsibility creates a sense of ownership among the planning committee members.
But First, Decide On Whether You Even Need Separate Committees For Your Family Reunion
What size is your family reunion? If it is less than 25 people then you don’t need separate committees. All you really need is 2-3 people to organize who is doing what.
If your family reunion is more than 25, you many need a committee or two from the list below. If the reunion is expecting 50+ people, then we would highly recommended following many of the recommendations regarding the different kinds of committees below.
What Kind Of Committee’s Are Normally Set Up For Family Reunions?
Accommodations committee – this committee is largely responsible for researching hotels in the city that you are holding your reunion. The research should help them narrow the choices of hotels down to a manageable amount based on your family reunion needs. For instance, your family reunion will probably need a hotel that has a pool so that the kids can have some activities at the hotel. You may also consider hotels that have banquet space where you can host a plated dinner.
Learn more about what responsibilities should be assigned to the hotel selection committee.
Communications committee – the person handling this committee needs to have two very important qualities. They have to be outgoing enough to be able to contact and talk to the entire family and have to be savvy enough with the computer to be able to set up websites, brochures, and surveys. You may have to split the duties between two people in order to accomplish all the tasks that will be assigned to this committee. In addition to maintaining a family database, this group of volunteers will also be responsible for setting up and maintaining a website, and designing flyers.
Read more about what a family reunion communications committee does.
Finance committee – assign one person to lead this committee along with two others to lend a hand. This committee is responsible for determining the budget for the family reunion, opening and maintaining a bank account, tracking cash inflows and outflows, and collecting funds from individual family members to help pay for the family reunion itself.
Read more details on what the family reunion finance committee does.
Catering committee – this committee is responsible for researching and deciding upon a suitable location for a banquet. In addition, they will be selecting caterers, negotiating pricing, and attending to the details of the banquet itself.
Here is a list of responsibilities for the catering committee.
Transportation committee – While every family reunion does not need a committee especially for transportation, larger reunions do require them. This group of volunteers will they be responsible for setting up the transportation from the airport, bus, and train station to the hotel.
In addition, they will also be responsible for negotiating any additional transportation needs from the hotel to nearby attractions. In this case, the transportation committee would rent out a bus that would pick up and drop off your entire group.
Family reunion tip – if you’re planning to have alcoholic beverages at a banquet house or the Park, have the transportation committee arrange a carpool schedule with designated drivers or rent a van to shuttle people back to their hotel/accommodations.
Entertainment/activities committee -This committee would responsible for arranging DJs, clowns, and activities that your family can take part in. For example, if one of the activities during a family reunion is to attend a Broadway show, this group would arrange for the tickets and negotiate group rates. They can also be responsible for recruiting volunteers to help with the games and activities. Need some ideas? Read our list of family reunion activities.
Set up/cleanup committee – Any family reunion requires a crew of people that will help with the registrations, setting up, decorations, signage, clean up. This group of people is responsible for making sure that all the planning everyone else is doing comes to fruition during the actual reunion. Read more about the responsibilities of the setup/cleanup committee.
Genealogy committee – This committee is responsible for researching family history, setting up a family tree, and doing various presentations that highlight the past. The group should be made up of knowledgeable family members who get along with all sides of the family.
Welcoming committee – Have 2 to 3 people at a table near the front desk of the hotel to welcome family reunion attendees. Seeing a familiar face as you are checking in immediately improves the mood and creates a level of comfort.the welcoming table should consist of welcome packets (Maps, coupons, directions to local attractions), name badges, and a family reunion agenda. Read more about the family reunion welcoming committee.
How Many People Should Be On Each Committee?
The number of people on each committee depends on the type of committee and the kind of responsibilities. For example the hotel selection committee may need two to three people assigned to it. Whereas the set up/cleanup committee would probably need more like five or six people assigned to it. We would start out every committee with two or three and add more as needed.
One thing to remember is that regardless of what committee it is, having an odd number of people is beneficial to break up any ties when making a decision.
Every family reunion is unique and therefore the committees needed to plan them will need to be customized from the ones listed above. Once you have a list of committee members leading individual tasks, planning will become much simpler.
What should you read next?
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