Family Reunion Picnic Planning Guide

Table of Contents

When planning a family reunion, if you are considering an outdoor reunion, then a picnic is definitely to be considered! Why a family reunion picnic, you ask? Well, there are many benefits to hosting a family reunion picnic:

  • You can do activities that you cannot do indoors
  • You can barbecue
  • It will tire the kids out
  • There is lots of nature to be seen
  • You can be loud
  • You can get a tan
  • There is more space to spread out and move around
  • You get some much-needed sunshine and vitamin D
  • No deposits to be paid such as if you were renting a hall

So, these are just a few of the many benefits for having a family reunion picnic. Now the question is, how do you plan a family reunion picnic? Easy.

First, you should get a planner or some type of organizer to keep track of everything. This will not only help to save you time, but may end up saving you some money as well. Once you get a planner started, start by making a full list of your family and their contact information. This is essential as not only will you be inviting them, but you may find their input useful as well!

When planning any picnic, especially for a family reunion, the things that typically need your attention are: Venue, food, outdoor activities, and other family reunion planning basics such as invites, hotel and flight reservations, welcome letters, favors and so on. Here, we will focus on the venue, food, and outdoor activities.


Location is a super important thing to give a lot of thought for a family reunion. You need to take into consideration the size of your family, any disabilities or allergies, the type of food you wish to serve, activities you would l like to plan, and where everyone would have the most fun!

Keep in mind that memories are being created at a family reunion so you don’t want anyone to be looking back and thinking about how boring it was! The venue should be a direct reflection of your family and the energy that will be expelled there.


If you are having a picnic for a family reunion, then you can really only go two ways with this: You supply the picnic food, or have everyone equally contribute to supplying the picnic food (i.e. potluck).

However the food gets there, here’s some good picnic food ideas:

Main dishes:

Try to keep everyone’s preferences and allergies in mind. Avoid peanuts if there is a peanut allergy, include a vegetarian dish if someone is vegan, and so on. Here’s some tasty and popular ideas. Oh, and don’t forget the condiments!

  • Barbeque chicken, hamburgers, or hot dogs
  • Sub, sandwiches, wraps
  • Salad bar: Pack lettuce, all veggies and dressings in separate containers and let everyone make their own

Side dishes:

You can’t have a picnic without a few good side dishes!

  • Salads: Beets, cucumber, broccoli, spinach, fruit, potato, coleslaw
  • Fresh fruit
  • Raw veggies with dip


Try to avoid anything that needs to stay frozen!

  • Chips: tortilla, cheese curls, potato chips with dip
  • Cookies
  • Pastries
  • Pie
  • Strawberry shortcake
  • Jello
  • S’mores: If the reunion will later turn into a bonfire reunion


Although carbonated beverages are a bit dehydrating, some people might prefer a soda, so have a cooler of ice with soda in it as well. Here’s a few beverages that go well with fun and sun!

  • Water
  • Tea
  • Lemonade
  • Punch


Since you will be serving awesome food at your picnic, everyone will be eating a lot, right? Right. So, this calls for a few great (and fun) activities that will be a large part of the family reunion event!

  • Contests: Pie eating, watermelon seed spitting, silly sculptures
  • Kite flying
  • Frisbee
  • Flag football
  • Tug of war
  • Hula hooping
  • Jump roping
  • Hopscotch
  • Toss games: Horseshoes, cornhole, ring toss, bean bag toss
  • Bounce houses
  • Water games: water guns, slip n’ slide, water balloons, sprinklers
For more picnic game ideas, check out:Family Reunion Picnic Games and Activities.

When it comes to picnic ideas for a family reunion, the sky’s your limit, literally. So don’t be afraid to think outside the box that you call a building, and come up with a few great ideas that you wouldn’t do at an indoor reunion!

Laura is the force behind Gathered Again, transforming family gatherings into unforgettable memories with expert tips and a heart full of passion. Join her mission to celebrate the magic of family connections, one event at a time.

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