Here are a few random things that occurred to me as I experienced and reflected on my reunion. None of these are intended to slight the organizers of my reunion. Everyone agreed that they did a great job, and some of my “ideas” are things that they did. Many of these ideas may be infeasible, as I have not really thought them through. They may or may not be of help in planning another reunion. They are in no particular order.
Consider corporate sponsorships
A number of people whined about the overpriced drinks at The Club. It was not about the money, exactly (and they weren’t really that expensive). It occurred to me that one or more of our clan might be affiliated with businesses that could have dropped a grand or two to subsidize our fun in exchange for some publicity.
For most of us, the $65 that the affair cost was not a big deal, especially with ten years to save up for it. For at least one, who came only to Friday’s Football game, it seemed that it was cash kept him from attending our Gala Event on Saturday. I am not sure how an organizer would deal with scholarships, but it might be worth a try.
Have a Public Event
Our Friday night football game and after-party at a local watering hole largely accomplished this. It allowed folks who didn’t have cash for the Gala to see folks, but more importantly allowed some other folks to come in and see people. It occurred to me that with a little more advertising, this event might have attracted people a couple years older or younger than us. Especially for people who traveled to the reunion and have little else to do in town, another informal Saturday gathering at a restaurant–or several, one for each elementary school–might be a good idea.
Invite people who didn’t graduate, esp those who transferred
At least one person who had graduated from another school asked if she could attend (and did, if I’m not mistaken). I have no idea how one would track down these people or what to put on their name tags where our Senior Pictures were, but given that many of the best re-connections were with folks we had known when we were much younger, including these folks seems like a good idea.
Consider an event that does not involve alcohol
One person I talked to mentioned that he or she does not drink and hanging out with people drinking is not much fun. Our football game was an alcohol-free event, for example.
I don’t know just how to track these people down. It would have been fun to see my high school physics teacher or my band director, but not my elementary school science teacher. Actually, 35 years later, even she would be interesting to see.
Wear sensible shoes
One female friend related, “I think my main objective that night was to just take the damn high heals off, I was miserable. ”
Here endeth my reunion notes. Thanks to all for reading, commenting, and relating your experience. If my stories did not convince you to think twice about skipping your 30th, I will close with this comment from a friend from another class.
“It really is weird to become friends with people you spent so many years trying to avoid.”