Saturday, July 7, 2012
Keeping the Flame
When I was a kid, my family used to participate in an annual family reunion that included 4 or 5 extended families of cousins. Each year, we'd all get together, rotating the host family among several different houses. This went on for many years, until my parents took over as semi-permanent hosts at their house in Moorestown. Roughly 10 years ago, my parents moved to Arizona and the annual family reunion went "dormant" for lack of an appropriate host family and someone to organize it; that is, until we stepped in.
When my wife and I built a new house in town, one of our goals was to have the kind of home that could serve as a central gathering place for the extended family. Six years ago, we re-instituted the annual event and have continued to do it since. Today was the day for this year's edition, attended by more than 50 people.
Everyone has come to look forward to the reunions as many of the families never see each other except for this day. In fact, it occurred to me today that if it weren't for our effort to keep the tradition alive, most of these people wouldn't have any occasion to be with each other. We even had a professional photographer come to take a group picture of everyone, something last done 30 years ago. Hosting this each year does take a lot of work (especially for my wife), and it can be costly, but it's certainly worth it.