MyNorth News Service

(Press Release provided by Tinybeans)

BLACK LAKE, MICHIGAN: Tinybeans, the app that makes it secure and simple for over 700,000 families around the globe to share their most precious moments, made one family’s mega reunion dream come true this Fourth of July weekend. Barbara Klee, of Pemberville, OH, won a $10,000 Ultimate Family Reunion that represents a fast growing trend for family gatherings.

“It has been so much fun. My family has had a blast and I couldn’t be happier. It has been so special because my parents are 86 and 85 and the fact that everyone can gather in one place with them and share the memories with the memory makers instead of hearing about the memories means so much to our family. ” – Barbara Klee, Reunion Winner

Four generations rallied together for an extraordinary weekend of events at a fully rented lakeside resort in Black Lake, MI. 28 great-grandchildren and 17 grandchildren journeyed from all corners of America to make memories and to keep traditions alive. 71 people in total flocked to meet relatives that they’d only heard about or seen in photos. Great grandparents Evie and Clarence Brahier, of Waterville, Ohio, married for 67 years, were beside themselves to see the whole family together.

“It’s been the best thing that has happened to us in many, many years — since we’ve had our own children. It’s the finest day of our lives in years. We are thrilled that everyone made it here. It is so much fun to see all of the grandchildren and great-grandchildren and is amazing to think that we started all of this.” – Evie/Clarence Brahier, Family Matriarch/Patriarch

Mega reunions like this one are a rapidly ramping trend. What are mega reunions? Mega reunions are multi-day, multi-generational events for which large numbers of family members travel long distances to celebrate their past, present and future. Families are spreading far and wide, so consequently, they are rarely connecting as a larger whole. Making new memories together through mega reunions is becoming necessary to keep strong family ties for future generations.

Luckily, technology and secure apps like Tinybeans keep families up to date and feeling closer together when miles apart. But nothing beats the memories made and traditions solidified at a weekend-long mega reunion. Tinybeans wants to bring the reunion that their app provides daily in digital format to the real world through this competition for the Ultimate Family Reunion.

Because of the success of the first Ultimate Family Reunion contest, Tinybeans is ready for the second. In fact, it is already under way. Just download the app and start sprucing up your family profile for a chance to win a family reunion worth $10,000. Judging begins in November 2015 to select the entrant with the most heartfelt and beautiful Tinybeans profile. The winner will be announced in December after which the planning will commence for the next Tinybeans Ultimate Family Reunion.

“Tinybeans is delighted to have made this magical event possible for such a wonderful family. We’re proud to bring mega reunions like Barbara’s to life with the annual Tinybeans Ultimate Family Reunion Contest and to also bring micro reunions to 700,000 inboxes every single day with the Tinybeans app.” – Eddie Geller, President of Tinybeans. 

Here are some tips from Tinybeans on how to create a mega reunion:

  • Take one year to plan the first one.
  • Identify a core team of family reunion organizers.
  • Get a head count of attendees as soon as possible.
  • Long holiday weekends work best for the actual event.
  • Raise money with fund raisers and by entering contests like the Tinybeans Ultimate Family Reunion Contest.
  • Splurge on a photographer to document the event and to get at least one mega family photo.

Day 1:

  • Kick off with a pancake breakfast or buffet.
  • Provide a list of things to do in the area or at the resort.
  • Let everyone get settled and catch up casually the rest of the day.

Day 2:

  • Host an all-day barbeque, picnic or buffet somewhere laid-back like a park or resort.
    • Barbara’s family reserved an entire resort in Black Lake, MI to host all 71 guests.
  • Make a backdrop where people can pose for photos.
    • Barbara’s family created a mini throne for the kids, and fun props for the adults to pose with, too.
  • Plan a few events to break up the day like family history (recent or long past) slide show and kid’s games.
  • Schedule at least one photo-worthy splurge like horse and carriage or pontoon boat rides.

Find social media coverage by searching for the hashtag #TinybeansUFR and @tinybeanskids