A lot of what we do here at YMCA of the Rockies – Estes Park Center revolves around family. When we talk about fostering a healthy spirit, mind & body we know a healthy family is a big (maybe the biggest) part of that. We take pride in the fact that the Estes Park Center is such an important place to so many families and has been for generations. To that point, the Estes Park Center serves more than 250 family reunions a year. It isn’t uncommon for relatives to travel from all over the country to attend a reunion in one of our 8 bedroom “reunion cabins”. These events are often planned years in advance (the majority of reunion cabin bookings are reserved 2 years ahead of time) and have grown into important traditions for many families.
These grand affairs can sound intimidating from both an organizational and financial standpoint. What a lot of prospective guests don’t know is that the Estes Park Center (and Snow Mountain Ranch) have a variety of ways to lodge, feed and entertain family reunions that don’t always involve reserving an 8 bedroom cabin years ahead of time. Our 9 lodges are perfectly suited to planning a big family getaway. The rooms offer privacy for each family but also allow folks to be near their loved ones (right down the hall). Some lodge rooms offer bunk beds so parents can stay affordably with their children as well. Our team of family reunion specialist can help your planning process go smoothly. Below are some important tips from the experts here at YMCA of the Rockies.
Delegate – Often times people take it on themselves to plan the entire reunion. Don’t be afraid to pull other family members into the fold! That will lighten the workload on you and give other family members a sense of ownership.
Leave free time – Planning an event can be stressful and sometimes that leads organizers to over plan daily activities. Plan for free time to allow everyone the space they need to elect activities and enjoy time together.
It is NEVER too early to start planning – Many of the reunions at the Estes Park Center book almost 2 years in advance. It is never too early to start planning and in most cases it gives larger families an opportunity to coordinate travel arrangements.
Pick a theme – It doesn’t have to be for the whole reunion, but coming up with theme days can really make your event cohesive and fun. Themes can make each reunion memorable and unique. They also help to get family member’s creative juices flowing with activity ideas.
Start a family newsletter – With large extended family reunions, sometimes simple newsletters sent out before the event can really help bring families together emotionally and spiritually. Taking the time to remember lost loved ones, highlight grand children’s achievements and generally keep everyone up to date about new event developments. Even in the age of social media, we still tend to miss a lot when it comes to family.
Start planning you’re reunion or group retreat today. Visit our reunion planning site here.