How to Plan a Memorable Get-Together

Organizing, LivingDeanne CapotostoComment


This weekend I am planning a family get-together for my Mom’s birthday.  It’s going to be so much fun.  I’m really looking forward to catching up with my family, enjoying some delicious food, and celebrating.

Since I love event planning, today I thought I would share with you some of my own tips for planning a memorable get-together.  Remember: keep it simple, and have fun with it!

My brother and sister-in-law's barn, my family's favorite place to have a get-together!

My brother and sister-in-law's barn, my family's favorite place to have a get-together!

How To Plan a Memorable Get-Together


 1.  Let your guests know the date of the event well in advance. 

I usually start to coordinate a date that works for everyone a month ahead of time. Especially since my brothers and I live in four different states and we all have very busy lives.  I send out an email and we pick a date that works for everyone, so that no one misses out on the fun.

 2.  Plan a delicious menu. 

Once the date is secured, pick a theme and plan the menu.  Keep it simple: appetizers, entrée and dessert.  Gourmet doesn’t have to mean complicated.  In my family, everyone gets assigned a dish or an item to bring. The meal is a shared-effort and we each contribute what we’re good at making (or buying).

3: Do something fun and memorable.  

One year, we had a birthday for my Mom where we decided that all the cards had to be handmade.  That was fun because we have some amazing artists in the family…  and then some people like me who can barely draw stick people.  (However, my card came out surprisingly well because I cut flower pictures out of magazines and made a decoupaged card.)  This year, my nephew, Jonathan came up with a great idea.  I can not share it since the party is on Saturday and we want to surprise everyone.  It should be fun!  I will post the activity on my Facebook page on Sunday.

4: Create an environment for the occasion.

Is it simple, casual, elegant?  Choosing the theme will help determine the decor and place settings.  Our family is loud and active.  Mom’s annual birthday dinner is held in the beautiful, unfinished barn behind my brother and sister in law's home.  We decorate with wild flowers in mason jars, twinkling lights, and mix-and-match china.  It’s rustic and elegant.  Remember: A little background music creates a relaxing atmosphere for conversation while everyone’s having appetizers.

5: Take lots of pictures.

We always ask Ben, the family photographer, to take photos.  Candid shots are nice, but we always shoot a group photo as well. 

Remember, the important thing is to enjoy yourself and create great memories with the people you love.  That’s what makes a memorable get-together.