If you were any sort of official in high school and your graduating class has a 10- year (or more!) anniversary coming up, you’re most likely the person who has been asked to organize the high school reunion planning. Congratulations! It’s a big job, but it can also be a fun and rewarding one.
One of the most stressful elements will probably be the worry over how many people will attend. After all, you don’t want to book a huge venue just for 15 former classmates. But then again, you don’t want to underestimate and have lots of guests in an uncomfortably small space. You also want to plan a high school reunion that’s successful, fun, and memorable. If you’ve never done high school reunion planning before, take a look at a few helpful tips below.
Don’t Try To Do It All Yourself
As said above, high school reunion planning is a pretty intense job. Depending on how many graduates your class had, it can be a full-time job, even. Because of this, you’ll probably need some help. Even if you’re an incredible planner and amazingly organized, you will quickly get overwhelmed and burned out if you try to do it all on your own. If no other class officials were asked to help (or if they simply said no), form your own committee. Choose responsible and dependable students from the class, or if no one will come to your aid from school, delegate jobs to people who weren’t students. The bottom line is: find some help! Assign jobs to people that they can concentrate on, and keep everyone in the loop via email or group texts. The better planned the event, the more successful and impressive it will be.
Find Every Student You Possibly Can
This is actually a massive job, and earns a spot as one of the most time-consuming parts of high school reunion planning. Maybe you have a smaller graduating class of 250 or so, but some schools have closer to 600. Therefore, tracking everyone down can take some serious time. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram will be a big help here, but there are those students who just aren’t on social media. If you can’t find your classmates through those platforms, try Googling their name, contacting their parents, or asking their close friends who also went to the school. Accept that there will be a few you can’t locate, but try your hardest—and maybe enlist your snoopiest friend to help!
Make An Invite They Can’t Refuse
Yes, we understand that these days, many events are sent through Facebook only. After all, it is cheaper. And that may be fine—but if you really want to get people excited and buzzing about this high school reunion, we suggest going all out with a splashy printed invite. Use Facebook to collect addresses, and get creative with the invitations. Don’t go too cheesy, girly, or sentimental. Keep it fun and exciting, and be clever. Be sure to include an email address on the invite in case people have questions, and make sure to ask them to RSVP.
Choose A Stylish Venue
While many high schools simply hold their reunions at the school, it’s a good idea to consider throwing the event at a more stylish, grown-up venue. Not only will this be a more attractive prospect to draw people in; it will also represent the fact that everyone, as a group, has moved forward in their lives and has truly graduated from the past. It’s a way of stepping out of the bland, too-familiar school gym and into a more sophisticated atmosphere. Another perk of booking an event venue is that it will include an in-house caterer and bar options, and often already has much of the décor you might want.
Decoration Is Key
Get creative with the décor! While a good event venue will have some regular things for decoration, it’s smart (and fun) to involve the class in the decorating ideas as well. String up reunion banners; create centerpieces that somehow incorporate old class pictures; set out old yearbooks, and have custom balloons made. Look up ideas for inspiration online, and choose things that will match your venue well.
Put Thought Into The Music
A live band or DJ is always fun, but if money is a big factor and a band/DJ is too expensive, make a playlist of the most popular hits from the year you graduated, mixed in with a few current hits. A good event venue will have a stage area for a band or DJ, but they should also have technology to connect your playlist to speakers that will be loud enough for everyone at the reunion to hear. No matter what choice you make regarding who or what will provide music, make sure that someone does it—someone who selects the right songs! Everyone will start moving once their high school favorites start playing.
High school reunions can be dicey for a lot of people, so it’s important to get them excited. When sending out your invites, include a custom hashtag for the event that people can start using, or create an event page on Facebook where people can post questions and comments. Sometimes just by seeing familiar faces in these discussions, others will get excited to attend. It may even be fun to post old school pictures in these discussion areas. And remember, because there are people who are “too cool” to RSVP, it may also be a good idea to really push the fact that in order to make sure there’s enough food, drinks, and space, you really need them to RSVP—and so please do.
Have A Blast And Make New Memories!
Indeed, a class reunion is the perfect time to re-live old memories and remember the good times. But it’s also an opportunity to make new ones. If the budget allows, it may also be fun to give out reunion favors as souvenirs, such as customized hats, pens, or mugs. Make sure to create a custom hashtag for the event so that everyone can check out photos from the party in one organized place. Include a photo booth with fun signs for everyone to hold, like this:
High school reunion planning can be a lot—but it can also be very fun. Make sure to get assistance and follow these tips, and you should have a highly memorable evening on your hands! And if you’re looking for the perfect Los Angeles venue for a class reunion, take a look at our space at Grand Banquet Hall to see if it fits your needs. If you have any questions, please contact us. We’re here to help!