Every once in a while we will meet up with our relatives and share with them our latest news. But what family reunion ideas and activities can you think of to play with them?
You want to make it more interesting than sitting down all afternoon, or maybe all day, and just chatting.
That is why I want to show you 10 activities that the whole family can take part in, (in some capacity at least).
When does your family get together?
Family reunions can be an annual event, or they may happen every few years or so.
Birthdays, weddings and even engagement parties are also an opportunity to catch up with your cousins, uncles, aunts and so on.
When does you family all get together?
Is it a regular occasion?
Does every family member attend?
Planning your family reunion!
Before I continue to show you cool ideas and activities there are a few things that you will need to think about and do.
Here’s a short video that explains what you need to do before you actually gather everyone together and have fun.
Credit: Gathered Again
What you need to do:
- Invitations – Who will you invite and how will you notify everyone about the reunion and the details?
- Meal Planning – The guest list will affect what meals you provide, the quantity and also whether anyone has an allergy.
- Accommodations – Does anyone have to travel long distances in order to get to the reunion venue?
- Travel Reservations – If anyone is from out of town will they stay with relatives or at a hotel?
- Activities – The fun stuff. Please check below for my top 10 activities and ideas for you all to take part in.
- Prizes – Make the reunion even more fun by awarding prizes to the winner(s). This could encourage everyone to join in.
- Entertainment – Will you need background music, face painting for the kids, etc?
You cannot possibly consider doing all of this planning on your own.
So, share the work load around and get other family members to help you and also give their input.
Please be advised that your budget may affect who you invite and also where the reunion will take place.
It may upset family members if they are not invited, so how about everyone chips in to pay for expenses.
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Getting Everyone Involved With The Family Reunion!
It won’t be much fun if everyone is not interacting and having fun. You don’t want to see Aunt July sitting on her own at a table or cousin Todd alone at the bar.
What sort of reunion is that right?
Reconnecting each other!
If that is the case then you might think to yourself what was the point of a family reunion in the first place.
It maybe though that they haven’t seen each other in so long and that they don’t how to break the ice.
They know that they are related but they don’t know how.
I wrote a recent post that included a family relationship chart that can show you how you are all related. Please check it out.
Or the reason why they are not interacting maybe because they may just be shy and need someone to help introduce each other.
How to get the family reunion started?
If you have taken the responsibility of organizing your family reunion then you will also need to make sure that everyone is having fun.
You may though wish to delegate that task to someone else or a few family members.
Whoever you decide though it needs to be a person who definitely has a personality. It needs to be someone who is approachable and who can instill fun into people.
And importantly someone who can encourage others to join in with the games and activities that you will be playing.
Suggestions to introduce each other and break the ice:
- Display your genealogy research – Have a table set up showing family trees, photos, research and anything else that you think will be of interest. Don’t go overboard with the display though as you don’t want to overwhelm people. Having a display though will be a great talking point.
- Distribute a survey – You can treat this like a game where you go around from person to person asking questions if you are not sure of the answer. You could ask questions such as, “which family member recently got married in California“, or “who has recently retired and has taken up golf?“. You don’t need to have the same questions listed on each person’s copy of the survey. Try though to include questions that will relate to each family member.
- Find someone who – Similar to the survey activity you can go around and find people who can juggle, who can sing or who can yoddle. It doesn’t matter what criteria that you select. This activity will make you interact with each other.
- Photo babies – How about you gather photos of your family members as a baby. The family then guess who they are. As some of the photos may show signs of age you may want to scan them and then display them as black and white pictures instead.
- Photo display – A great way to introduce each other to your life is in pictures. So bring along pictures of your home, your car, your neighborhood, your hobby, etc. You could otherwise make this a game where everyone guesses who the display matches.
- Write your own bio – It doesn’t have to be a story, just a few key points about your life. You could also include little known facts and then the rest of the family, (or a group of family members), can guess who they correspond to.
You can choose one, a few or all of these activities if you wish. The point though is that you want to break the ice and get people talking.
So, whatever you do choose it will be the right choice.
And one thing that I must stress is that these activities can be played throughout the family reunion.
Not just at the beginning.
The Family Reunion Ideas and Activities!
The icebreakers that I suggested in the previous section were all to do with introducing yourself. They focused on your family history.
But that doesn’t need to be the case with the following ideas and activities that I will discuss here.
Firstly though I would like to acknowledge Michelle Valenti from Reserve America for the following suggestions.
Everyone knows this very popular game, and why not because it’s so much fun to play.
You can decide whether you want to play a traditional game set or maybe you would like to come up with your own suggestions.
You may want someone to help you with ideas for your own version.
Traditional categories include:
- Famous person
- A saying
Please check How to Play Charades for directions on how to play the game.
2. Egg and Spoon Race
Another very popular game to play is the good old fashion Egg and Spoon Race. Although not everyone will be able to play.
But that’s OK because grandma Peg can cheer on from the sidelines.
Your family will first need to pair up and decide who will go first. You will then need to stand 30 feet apart, (or however far you wish).
Then place the spoon in your mouth, place the egg on the spoon and then run to your partner.
Make sure though that you do not drop the egg! If you do then you and your partner are out of the game.
Once you have got to your partner it is then their turn to run back with the egg to the side that you started from.
And obviously the first one back is the winner.
3. Family Talent Show
Everyone has a talent don’t they?
Sure I can juggle, a bit. I need practice though but I’m sure that I could put on a show, lol.
So, what special talent do you think your family members can do?
Well why not stage a family talent show?
It will be best though if they are forewarned because nobody likes to be put on the spot.
Unless of course they relish the limelight.
- Sing a song
- Play a musical instrument
- Perform an act with a partner, could be dramatic or one of your favorite comedy routines
- Perform a dance
- Recite a poem
- Juggle, (something I need to practice)
4. Family Trivia
Who doesn’t like a quiz?
I love them. I don’t have the opportunity to go to pub quizzes, (I have small children), but I love watching quiz shows on TV.
So why not host your very own quiz?
You can find general knowledge questions on the Internet. Trust me there’s plenty out there.
Or you could come up with your own questions.
My distribute a survey suggestion above could be used here. Although with this game you will need plenty of questions, maybe up to 30 if you wish.
To get answers for your family reunion you can send out questionnaires.
The questions could be the same for each family member, but could also ask questions respective of the person you are asking.
For example, you could ask what year that your Uncle Fred married Aunt Jane.
5. Make A Family Album
I must admit that not everyone will take part fully in this activity, but everyone can at least bring in photographs that they don’t mind being cut up and pasted into an album.
All you need to do is set up an area where your family members can go to from time to time.
It doesn’t have to be a huge group, just a few at a time. Although having a couple would be good as they can talk together while they cut and paste.
You will need the following:
- An album
- Blank pages
- Stickers, stamps and glitter
- Scissors, (make sure that they are child-safe)
- Crayons, markers, colored pens and pencils
6. Play Ball
Yet another activity that is very popular at family gatherings. Although again the older members of the family will not be able to take part.
But they can at least cheer on from the sidelines.
The great thing is that you can decide what ball game that you want to play, and you can also set the rules if you wish. You may even want to play a few games, and that’s cool.
Ball games to play:
- American football
- Baseball or softball
7. The Banana Game
You may not have heard of this game and quite frankly I didn’t until I read about it. But it does sound like a lot of fun.
It’s quite wacky really, pretty similar to the Egg and Spoon Race in that regard.
Everyone who wants to play has a piece of string tied around their waist with a length of it reaching the ground.
A banana is then tied on the end so that it is just above the ground.
The idea is then to knock a ball from a starting position to the finish line. You will need to be quite active as you will be swinging your hips quite a bit for this game.
So it isn’t for everyone in that regard. You may want to tell your family beforehand if they are not familiar with the game.
And again like the Egg and Spoon Race the first person to cross the finish line wins.
8. Scavenger Hunt
Always good with children but that doesn’t mean that adults can’t join in as well.
You may want to hide objects so that your family can scavenge for them, a traditional scavenger hunt.
Or you may want to set clues. So they person, pair or group has a clue which will then lead on to the next clue.
This can then ultimately lead to treasure of some kind.
9. Story Time
This is a great activity for when the party is winding down and everyone has enjoyed playing the games that you have organized.
If you have a campfire going then this is a great opportunity for everyone to sit down and tell stories.
It could be about themselves or about another family member. You may though want to prepare people for this activity.
Sometimes it can be difficult to think of a story on the spot.
So, having some time to think about this is a good idea.
If the story is embarrassing for someone else you may want to check with them first if it is OK to say.
Also, another good tip is to come up with stories that you think may not have been heard by others.
There’s nothing worse than listening to the same story for the umpteenth time.
10. Water Balloon Toss
A popular game that can be played during the summer months is the good old fashion Water Balloon Toss.
For this game you will need to stand in pairs.
The object of the game is to toss a balloon filled with water and then toss it to your partner and not letting it pop.
Every time that you successfully toss the balloon you will then need to take a step back and then toss again.
And the winner then is the last pair who have not let their balloon pop.
My Final Thoughts!
Wow, that is quite a selection of fun games and activities that you can do with your family during reunions?
As I mentioned earlier in the post you want to get everyone involved.
You don’t want some family members just sitting alone at a table or drinking at the bar.
Where’s the fun in that?
It is a family reunion after all and you may not have seen them in quite a while.
So, why not play the games and get interacting.
Learn about your family history too!
As this is a genealogy site I do want to urge you though to find out more about your family history.
This is a great opportunity to get facts about your ancestors, learn new stories, or try to break down some brick walls and get some answers.
The survey and trivia activities discussed in this post though will help you to get some much needed research.
But a family reunion can be a good occasion to hear stories, especially at the campfire.
For that reason you may want to bring a pad and pen to jot the points of the stories down.
If you are a bit fuzzy with the details later on when you type them up then you can always contact your relative to set you straight.
I’m sure that they would appreciate you taking the time to speak with them.
This can then lead on to visiting your relative so that you can conduct an interview with them.
My Top 20 Family History Interview Questions post will show you how to prepare for an interview and give you questions that you can ask them.
Thank You and Please Leave A Comment
I hope you enjoyed this post showing you fun family reunion ideas and activities. If you think that this post will be helpful to others then please share with friends and family using the social media buttons below.
If you have any questions or comments then please leave a comment below. I would love to hear from you.