Planning a reunion is a daunting task -- but it doesn't have to be! With a little pre-planning and organization you can have a fun event to reunite with classmates you haven't seen in years. The steps on this page are a simple guide in planning your reunion. No two reunions are alike but every reunion requires upfront planning to be successful.
TIMELINE - To ensure you have sufficient lead-time, you should ideally start planning 12 months (or more) in advance of the event. If you only have six months or less, you can still pull it off but you may need to adjust your timeline accordingly!
RECRUIT A PLANNING COMMITTEE - Start by forming a local core of 5-10 dedicated and enthusiastic classmates to help with the planning process. Be sure to create a diversified group of people who weren’t all part of the same crowd back in high school. This will help spread a wider net when trying to locate people, and when encouraging people to attend. You will need someone to get the ball rolling, this responsibility is usually that of the class president, however, if they are not able or willing to help, have the committee agree on a reunion chair who will arrange and oversee meetings. It is a good idea to appoint a treasurer to handle the finances. The President or Chair should schedule monthly meetings and set planning goals leading up to the date of your event.
SET A DATE - The most popular time for a reunion is early summer or late fall. Over the summer months it is easier for people to travel with their families. The fall months is a popular time to plan a reunion so that your class can participate in the Homecoming festivities including the parade and football game.
CREATE AN ONLINE PRESENCE - It is important to get the word out to create some interest in the reunion. Building a website or starting a Facebook page for the reunion is a great way to get the information out. Encourage people to share old photos, reunion ideas and their new contact information. Create a class email address where people can send their contact information and suggestions. Select an online administrator on your committee to maintain the website, Facebook and email account.
CONTACT THE HIGH SCHOOL - It is a good idea to call JCHS and let them know you are planning a reunion. Be sure to give them a reunion contact in case someone else contacts the school for reunion information. The high school also may be able to provide you with a complete class list, contact information and a schedule of events for the year.
CREATE A MASTER CONTACT LIST - Have your committee divvy up the class list and set out to get updated contact information from classmates. For classmates you are unable to find online, look for their parents contact information and ask them for help. It may be a good idea to do a mailing to the last known address of missing classmates directing them to the website, email address, or a P.O. Box where they can send their updated contact information.
PREPARE A BUDGET - There are several costs associated with planning a reunion including postage, website hosting fees, venue rental, food and beverage costs. Thoroughly outlining these costs at the beginning will help calculate ticket costs or suggested donations to cover the cost of the reunion. It also is a good idea to open a bank account for reunion funds, excess monies collected can go towards funding future class events.
PLAN THE EVENT - Whether you are planning a one evening event or a weekend of events, get your dates and venues nailed down as soon as possible. You may want to plan an entire weekend around your reunion festivities, since many attendees will be traveling from out of town solely for the event. Plan one main reunion event on a Saturday night, so that people who are traveling can make it in to the main event. In addition, you can have a Friday night welcome mixer and maybe even a post- reunion brunch or picnic on Sunday.
SAVE THE DATE - Send a save the date email or postcard to your contacts so they can get the event on their calendar. It is important to get this out around 6-9 months in advance as a courtesy to people who may be traveling or flying in for the event.
MORE RESOURCES FOR REUNION PLANNING -