Reunions are always difficult to arrange. Members of the organizations set up the reunions and are not experts in this field. No one is sure how many people will come. Costs are difficult to estimate. Sit down dinners and hotels are difficult to arrange. A reunion committee may live in many different areas and not know each other well. As a consequence, many organizations do not conduct reunions, or when they do, mini disasters sometimes occur.
There is a business opportunity here for an entrepreneur. I am much better at coming up with ideas then actually doing anything (I be a recovering govmint planner not a doer), so I put this concept out hoping that someone will proceed and succeed.
A hotel and or a convention center and or a banquet hall could establish a business called CLASS REUNIONS. An employee would research all high schools, grade schools, colleges, and military units within 50 miles of the city, and work with reunion committees if they can be found.
A time and date for reunions would be established for a specific class that would recur each year. For example, the classes of 1965-66-67 of Morgan Park High School would always have their reunion on the first Friday in October each year. The class of 1967-68-69 would always meet on the first Saturday in October, etc etc. You would group years together on a Friday / Saturday / Sunday to try to get people to come for more then one evening.
Notice of the reunions would be communicated through email and web sites and advertising and after a few years everyone would know to rendezvous at the CLASS REUNIONS on a date and time certain.
The CLASS REUNION would be held in a large bar of that name colocated with a hotel. A sign on the corner of the building would advertise the coming CLASS REUNION at CLASSE REUNIONS (Or Classe Reunion). People will learn the recurring date and time for their reunion. Out of town folks will stay in the hotel and people will eat in local restaurants and drink in local pubs.
The large bar is the regular hotel bar, just large. No reservations or planning work is required - folks coming to the bar purchase their own drinks and or food. The bar just becomes crowded and busy during the CLASS REUNION.
The program would work best for a hotel and bar that needs more customers, especially on the weekends. A downtown convention center / hotel would be a great facility, bringing more people into downtown when they are needed them - on the weekends. It would bring life and vitality into downtown.
An effort like this could be led by the private entrepreneur or the convention center authority. The effort brings more people and more money into the area so that it is in the interests of both parties.
I would be glad to give you a little free consulting help in getting such an operation underway. I think this has the possibility of becoming a large national business, but someone has to do it locally first to prove that it works.
Let me know if you move forward.