Setting Up A Web Site To Bring Your Family Together
In the olden days, planning a family reunion just meant sending out letters and making phone calls. Those are still important today, but more and more organizers will want to create a reunion website. This can seem like a daunting task if you’re not technically oriented, but with a little help and a few basic tips, your planning family reunions website can be up and running in no time.
With family members living across the country, it becomes important to make use of the Internet to communicate family reunion plans. Create a reunion website to commemorate your family in its own distinctive style. Make the web site fun and create your own theme. If you’re not creative try some of the free or low cost web sites that are just a quick Google search away.
When you create a reunion website, content ideas range from the fun to the practical. Ask family members go to the web site and put in their contact information, sign up for automatic emailed updates and ask them to post blogs. A family website is a great way to survey the extended family for dates of the event, location, activities of interest and cost. You can also set up a photo gallery and ask the family to post old photos, a family letter and special events happenings throughout the year to keep the family close and ready for the next reunion.
One of the first and most important pieces of information for creating a reunion website will be the date & location of the reunion. The best dates for family reunions are usually during a school break or holidays when most members will be able to come-a quick poll on the website or an emailed survey can quickly narrow down the best choices for the majority. For the location you can also run a poll, or give people options to choose from. Select a central location with easy access to an airport to keep price in line for any distant travelers. Once you have the location and dates post them on the web site and send out an email announcement. Link your family reunion web site to the location’s web site so the family can check out the amenities, accommodations, restaurant, parking etc. Let everyone know when they can make reservations in the room block, what name the room block is under, the phone number, rates, and their cancelation policy and how to communicate any special accommodations needed due to health issues. You might want to discuss with the location the option of setting up online reservations-that way family can see the date & location and make their reservations, all at once!
Don’t forget the other information that could be useful to create a reunion website. Post transportation information such as car rentals, shuttle services, taxis or bus routes along with maps on how to get around the area–especially if it’s an unfamiliar destination. Set up reminders for people as the date approaches so that they won’t forget to make travel arrangements if necessary. Get a link to the local chamber of commerce web site. They can provide assistance on what activities are available, theater schedules, lists of restaurants and shopping.
The website can also be used to keep your family on schedule. Send out automatic emails at each stage of the reunion planning and keep the blogs going. Have the planning committee post notifications as the plans progress on various activities. Where the banquet will be held, what to wear, what to bring, price involved, RSVP etc. Let people know when reservations are finalized, what still needs to be done and, of course, if any last minute changes come up. One month before the event have the events committee start posting games, get the competition and friendly rivalries rolling, such as sending in old photos and playing a game to guess who they are. Or collect family recipes and award the winner of the best recipe a trophy at the reunion.
The impression you create with your own custom reunion web site will last long after the reunion is over, and a well-designed and maintained website can be used year after year. Don’t just let it lapse the day the reunion starts! After the reunion the web site is even more important; especially for those family members who could not come. You can post tons of pictures and request blogs to commemorate your family reunion. If this is an annual event maintain your site and keep the activities throughout the year and keep the next reunion on everyone’s mind. Creating a family reunion website will help everyone in your extended family keep in touch and excited about your next family reunion.
The website can also help with family reunion planning, as can our expert articles that guide the reunion organizer through the ins and outs of reunion planning. Check back often to see more updates as reunion season gets underway!
Get more information on Branson Meetings & Reunions, call, toll-free (877) 262-0430