Most reunions distribute a gift item to classmates that attend the reunion. These items vary widely in both quality and cost. Among the most commonly used are: T-shirts, hats, pens, glassware, coffee mugs, sweatshirts, golf shirts, umbrellas, and tote bags. Reunion committees make arrangements to distribute as few as one and as many as four items to classmates that attend the reunion.
A budget should be established for the purchase of these items. This budget will dictate the quantity and quality of items to be purchased. Adding ten percent to the estimated reunion attendance will usually prove to be a sufficient quantity to purchase. If there are items remaining at the end of the reunion, they can be sold to classmates for slightly above their original cost.
Most classes develop their own logo, which may be imprinted on the items. There is usually a one-time set-up charge for making the original screen for imprinting. A finished sample should be inspected before the final quantity is ordered.
The HAA office can be most helpful in suggesting suppliers for these items. It is a good idea to purchase fewer items of good quality rather than a larger amount of cheaper quality. Gifts that appeal to both sexes (as well as to children if they are included) are the best choice. Try to choose items that will be cherished and used or worn by classmates long after the reunion. Allowing plenty of lead-time insures that your orders will be delivered before the reunion. All items should be shipped to one location, preferably in the Cambridge area, and preferably to a member of the reunion committee, where there will be someone available to receive them, inventory them, and see that they are stored in a secure location until needed. The HAA does not have sufficient storage areas to accommodate deliveries of reunion memorabilia.
Handing out memorabilia items at registration time can be greatly facilitated by pre-packaging them in a bag with the name of the recipient on the outside or by exchanging the item for a ticket pre-stuffed in the reunion registration packet. Careful inventory control prevents latecomers from leaving empty-handed. Rather than charging for memorabilia the cost should be included in the reunion registration fee so that every classmate receives one whether they signed up for the entire reunion or are able to attend only one event.
Also, see Reunion Favors for more information.