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Mark Angelo Askew is the author of "Fimark's Family Reunion Planner Guide Workbook and Keepsake" and the founder and director of the Family Reunion Planning Group that established November as Annual Family Reunion Planning Month.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

How To Plan A Meet And Greet

A great way to kickoff the festivities held the first day of the reunion event is by arranging a Meet and Greet. The purpose of the Meet and Greet is to provide an opportunity to say a decent hello to all arrivals, give the huggers in the family a time to embrace and allow for relationship building with newly engaged, married and adopted family and friends in a relaxed atmosphere, 

How To Host A Meet and Greet

It's best to start off by introducing new ones including new born children to the family. 
While mingling will give the family at large the opportunity to get to know new guests it helps to feature some ice breakers as well. One way we've done this is by playing a friendly game. The "Getting to Know You" game. This game is played simply by having the newest family members stand in a line and asked a few simple questions. You may wish to give each player a copy of the list of questions hours or days before the game is played so they won't feel put on the spot. 

7 Good "Getting to Know You" Questions

  • If you were to describe yourself using only three words what would they be?
  • What is your most outstanding quality?
  • Tell us one thing people would never guess about you.
  • What hobbies do you enjoy?
  • What sports do you play?
  • What is your favorite dinner dish?
  • What is your favorite dessert?
It's also a good idea to review the itinerary and point out a few exciting features of the program that will encourage all to participate.

Challenges of Meet and Greets

Some of the challenges of the Meet and Greet is getting everyone to the venue in time.  
Some miss this event as they intend to arrive the next day and stay for a few hours before heading back home. After a long drive to the hotel some may need to rest before dressing up and going to a social event. While this is typical of some attendees how can you get most of the arrival to attend the Meet and Greet? 

Getting Better Results

To get better support and attendants arrange to have the Meet and Greet later in the day or evening. Put it on the Itinerary and mention some of the opportunities the event will provide. For example; "Hug and hold the newest and youngest member of the Smith clan." "Welcome Uncle Ben's beautiful bride, Shelly." "Meet greet and enjoy a wonderful seafood buffet." Find a few good reasons that build anticipation and many will come to meet, greet and kickoff a memorable family reunion event.

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