Question of the Week: Have you attended a family reunion this summer?

+21 votes

We're already in August! I would imagine most family reunions in the northern hemisphere have already happened. Where did you go? Did you hear any stories you haven't heard before?

And for those of you below the equator: Are you planning family reunions for your summer season?

Have you thought about putting together a free-space page for your family reunion? It's a great way to share memories, photos and stories that you heard, or you can organize information beforehand.

in The Tree House by Julie Ricketts G2G6 Pilot (372k points)
My Italian side of the family just had our 30th annual reunion.  What started in 1957 as a small cookout with a dozen or so is now so much larger.  This year I printed out a family tree banner that was more than 4 feet long.

Yes, a surprise birthday party in Ohio for my uncle's 70th.  My aunt, her husband and daughter and myself all managed to fly in from Washington state and California respectively.
I planned, along with my cousin, our family reunion for this year. We held it at a place where our ancestors grew up and it was amazing. I love getting together with family and sharing stories. We don't have many older members left so the younger ones need to hear and remember the stories.
Husbands  side of family and I started about 30 years ago still going strong.
I wouldn't say a "family reunion," as it was only the descendants of my great grandparents, who we see a thousand times a year (not literally, of course). But we did have a family get-together. We had one for my grandmother's 80th & my cousin's 50th birthdays (they are on the same day, June 19). Then, last week, we got together again for my uncle's 44th birthday.

24 Answers

+13 votes
Best answer
Not in the way I imagine "family reunion" is usually thought of, but I and my mother went to visit a distant cousin that we never met before, and had nice day with her, looking at pictures, reading old letters etc.

Her grandmother was left in Sweden when the rest of her family emigrated to the United States. It doesn't seem that anyone knows why.
by Maria Lundholm G2G6 Mach 8 (88.5k points)
selected by Susan Laursen
Maria --

That story sounds very similar to my family's story. My grandparents and one son moved to America in 1923, and they left their daughter in Sweden with her grandparents.

I just recently learned that they had originally intended to bring their daughter to America with them, but while they were waiting for their visas, my grandmother became pregnant. Having only three visas, they had to leave their daughter behind because their son was too young to leave.

Their intentions were to bring their daughter later, but by the time they were able to do that, she didn't want to leave Sweden.

My grandparents had two more children after they came to America -- one was my mother. She didn't meet her sister who was left behind in Sweden until they were both in their 40s and 50s. That was an incredible reunion! :-)
+9 votes
No, but we are planning one for next year. Can't wait!
by Deb Durham G2G Astronaut (1.0m points)
+8 votes
No, but it certainly is an idea to follow up
by Chris Burrow G2G6 Pilot (119k points)
+7 votes
Nope! Just going on vacation in a few weeks.
by John Susnir G2G6 Pilot (108k points)
+7 votes
No but September second we will be having a family memorial gathering for my recently deceased aunt.
by Dale Byers G2G Astronaut (1.4m points)
condolences on your loss Dale
I'm sorry for your loss. We had one of those ourselves in June.

Sorry for the loss. We had a get together a few years ago when a great uncle died. Many of us that could traveled to Arkansas. Some family I had not seen some for 30 years or so. It was nice to reconnect and celebrate my great uncle's life at the same time. I hope you have a similar experience.
+12 votes
Yes, I attended the 89th annual Lortie reunion started by my greatgrandparents when
their children and grandchildren were coming on. It has been held ever since, except for during the gas shortage in the Second World War.   It has had ups and downs in attendance but about four of the original grandchildren, still alive, try to get out, walkers and all!  There are over
500 descendants  but only a small core of locals, within a 50 mile radius of
the original home farm, still seem to feel a loyalty to it.
by Beulah Cramer G2G6 Pilot (253k points)
+7 votes

Great question! There are a couple I'm looking at - one for this year and one for next. And while the LiveCast last Saturday was mostly about representing WikiTree at a genealogy conference, it touched on reunions too. And I found out WikiTree has a cool resource page for stuff to take to either: see

by Liz Shifflett G2G6 Pilot (423k points)
+9 votes

I attended the 102nd annual Baucom Family Reunion the first Sunday in June at Morrow Mountain State Park in outside Albemarle, North Carolina. It brings together the family of my 2xgreatgrandfather Alvis Baucom. It's mostly attended by the descendants of his son JTC but we'd love to have more.

The Descendants of Benjamin F Campbell and Margaret Ann Taylor Campbell that I research had their 80th reunion this year in Clearwater. I've created a space page to accumulate links to newspaper articles about it. Not much there yet but there will be. 

by Debi Hoag G2G6 Pilot (296k points)
+9 votes
Yes! I just returned from a reunion of the children of Reindert Schouten and Augusta Hartsuiker, who emigrated from the Netherlands and settled in Las Vegas, Nevada in the late 1800s. The reunion was held on the 100th year anniversary of my grandmother, Johanna Schouten's birth, and included her descendants and the descendants of her five Siblings. We gathered at her former home in rural northern New Mexico and had a really splendid time with five generations of cousins.
by Annie Leonard G2G2 (2.5k points)
+6 votes
I went to my Shockey reunion at the end of June / beginning of July. It was up in Winchester, VA so that we could do tours of the family history and go to church at Shockeysville, VA.  I got to meet quite a few cousins in person who I've only met online.

Mid October is a Dyess reunion in Texas and then end of Sept is a Dyess reunion of one line.  Hoping to go to both but unsure at the moment.
by Charlotte Shockey G2G6 Pilot (944k points)
+6 votes
I haven't attended any yet this summer, but I am hosting a Penny family reunion in a couple of weeks. This will be the third annual one that I am hosting. We had them when I was a small child, but the last one before I started them up again was in about 1984. My uncle that was hosting them in the early 80s had a stroke and couldn't do it any longer and just no one ever picked up doing them again after that. They've been very successful the two years I've had them so far -- over 100 people at the very first one. Hoping for an even bigger turnout this year!
by NJ Penny G2G6 Pilot (144k points)
+4 votes
I'm going to one next week! Ancestry matched me to a 5th cousin through the ancestor honored at the reunion.

What do I need to bring with me? What types of questions should I have ready? I have very few sources others than Find-a-grave, and even that has conflicting information.
by Heather Colley G2G3 (4.0k points)
+4 votes
The family of K. E. Reed (reed-13313) has been gathering anually for we'll over 50 years maybe 60 plus. The 4 of 15 surbiving children and 17 first cousins were present at this year's gathering of about 85 total.
+5 votes
The Compton line will be Oct 14th in Bl.Co. Tn. at Rocky Branch Comm. Cntr.  I am so excited  we already have people coming from all over.
by Carol Carnes G2G2 (2.7k points)
+4 votes
Yes, my Durfee family held a reunion in Hagerman, ID.  It was awesome to meet so many 2nd and 3rd cousins that I'd never met or were really young and are now adults.  It was lots of fun.
by Doug Pilant G2G1 (1.9k points)
+4 votes
Not yet.  I'm not 100% sure if we are even having any reunions this year or not.

On my mom's side, we always had the Gibbs/Winchell Family Reunion which was held every year until about 7 years ago when I attended the last one. There is a surprise birthday party for my great uncle on Friday so if I get a chance to talk to him I'll see if there is one being held.

On my dad's side, we always had a Graves Family Reunion the first Saturday after Labor Day. I'm not sure if they're hosting one this year or not. I do know there is a big Graves Family reunion being held in Virginia in October, but I am not able to attend that one.
by Tina Chase G2G6 Mach 1 (16.7k points)
edited by Tina Chase
+4 votes
I attended an unofficial family reunion at the funeral of my sister last month in Arlington, Virginia. Almost everyone in her extended family was there, including her children and grandchildren, her brother (me), and her nieces and nephews with their children. The only one missing was her remaining sister, who can no longer travel at age 91.
by Henry Chadwick G2G6 Mach 4 (48.2k points)
+3 votes
My side is spread across the US so we get together at funerals and weddings... sort of . My wife's family come from Brugges, Belgium. They know how to do a family reunion. Her mom was one of 10 children and the only one that came to America. When we go back we rent a hall and have quite the feast and conversation. We usually have 50-60 people.
by Marty Acks G2G6 Pilot (113k points)
+1 vote
Yes! I coordinated a family reunion last month, the first in several years. It was attended by 54 people. We ate cake to celebrate my father's 86th birthday, signed patches to be made into a signature quilt, shared copies of the family tree, skyped with family unable to be there in person and had a wonderful time.
by Judith Brandau G2G6 (9.5k points)
+2 votes
Yes, we had a reunion the beginning of August.  After discovering a half sibling through DNA on Ancestry.  How exciting!

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