Home > Start with Basics > When

When to Hold the Family Reunion

The date and time you set for your family reunion affect who will attend. Here are some considerations about the meaning of "when" as it affects your reunion.

The word when can be interpreted many ways when it comes to your family reunion.

  • The year to hold it can be important if you're planning a large reunion. The larger the reunion, the longer lead time you need to give people so they can schedule it into their activities. For very large reunions, you may want to schedule it two or three years in advance. For small reunions, you may only need a few weeks.
  • The time of year to hold it is important because it affects the activities you can plan. For example, if you plan for summer, you won't be able to do a ski vacation. Most family reunions are held in the summer because people customarily take vacations then and can plan them around the reunion. Summer also allows more outdoor activities.
  • How many days the reunion will last affects what activities you can plan, how far away you can travel and whether you will need to raise money to pay for facilities.
  • The exact dates to start and end the family reunion affect when people will arrive, how much lodging is needed, and how many people will be able to fit it into their schedule. Many family reunions take place over long weekends, for example, so family members don't have to take off from work or school.
  • The time you start and end tells people when to arrive for a particular activity and when they can drive off or leave to catch a flight home. Many activities require a start and end time, especially if you hold a multi-day reunion.

Since you're still in the planning stage, your ideas for when to hold the reunion may be somewhat tentative. You can always change it if your choice doesn't work.

Pull out a calendar and set a starting date at the very least. Here are some dates to especially consider.

  • A date when family members are already getting together, such as for a wedding, a baptism or christening or a bar/bat mitzvah reception.
  • A long weekend or holiday.
  • A date that has significance for your family such as the birthday of an elderly family member or the wedding anniversary of an ancestor.