Family Reunion Planning: A Five-Step Guide

Looking to plan a family reunion but aren’t sure where to start? Saugatuck/Douglas makes an amazing location for a “destination” family gathering, because of the wide range in activities that people of all ages will enjoy. It’s also the perfect Midwest meeting point as well, being just a short drive from locales like Detroit, Lansing, Grand Rapids, Chicago and more. Here are five steps to get the plans in motion:

1.) Compile/Assess the Guest List

A final guest list will help you assess how many people will most likely attend your reunion. Call a point person in each family to gauge interest and availability. Look at each individual family; their home base, income and personalities to help you determine what sorts of lodging accommodations would be comfortable for the group and what activities would be most enjoyable.

2.) Choose Your Reunion Style

After gauging interest, availability and personalities, decide on what style your reunion should be. Would your group feel more comfortable at a campground, a large property with lots of cabins  like Dollybrook Resort, or in an inn with large gathering spaces like Hop & Vine Inn? Perhaps you reserve a set of rooms at a boutique hotel like Beachway Resort & Hotel, a bed and breakfast like J. Paule’s Fenn Inn, and rent a vacation rental home for different parties; then plan to gather at central spots, like Oval Beach, Coghlin Park or Wade’s Bayou.

3.) Book Accommodations

When the style of your reunion has been decided, the next step is to book! Consult our website for a list of options. You can use the widgets on the left-hand side of the page to refine and narrow your search to fit your style. Or, you can call the Saugatuck/Douglas Welcome Center at 269-857-1701, where the staff can help guide you in the right direction, and offer suggestions for activities and attractions.

4.) Create a Meal Plan

Depending on how large your group is, you may want to plan to have one meal together per day, or each meal of the entire trip. You could consider catering options for lunches, or research one restaurant where you have a large family meal during the trip. Options for dining in Saugatuck/Douglas are limitless, just be sure to have it planned in advance so no one has to stress.

5.) Plan for Downtime

Whether your event is a weekend or a week-long affair, you’ll want to create downtime in your schedule of events. Not all families can handle three, five or more full days of togetherness! Request a few Saugatuck/Douglas visitor guides from the welcome center for all of your guests (they’re free!). Mark specific spots in the map as suggestions to enjoy during the downtime. Luckily, here in Saugatuck/Douglas, there’s plenty to do – coffee shops, river tours, boutiques, art galleries, hiking trails, kayaking, the list is infinite.

Looking for more planning guidance and ideas? Contact the Saugatuck/Douglas Area Convention & Visitor’s Bureau today:

Phone: 269-857-1701
Location: 95 Blue Star Hwy. Douglas, MI 49453
Office Hours (EST)
Monday – Friday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

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