For our “Win Your Family Over” Family Reunion Contest on Facebook, we asked fans to write an essay of up to 500 words on why they would like CustomInk to help make their family reunion this summer one to remember… Boy, did we get some amazing responses! Seriously, there are going to be some fantastic family reunions happening this summer. Thank you to all of you for participating in our contest and sharing such compelling stories. One in particular stuck out from the rest of the top 10 finalists (based on votes) and you can read the winning entry below. We’re happy to help make the 2011 Bass Family Reunion the best yet!
“If it is to be, it is up to me.” To many, this may be just a simple saying, but it has become the motto for the Bass family. It has driven us for the past 49 years to stay connected. What was once just a Saturday afternoon picnic has evolved into a four-day, three-night weekend solely dedicated to family.
The first Bass Family Reunion was held in July 1962 in Chicago, IL. Though the first reunion consisted of a single family gathering of 73 people, we now span 7 generations and number over 300 members, from infants to our 91-year-old matriarch and patriarch.
While originating in Chicago for many years, the reunion has been hosted in many other cities such as Atlanta, Cleveland (MS), Detroit, and Memphis, to name a few. Every year, our families travel from all over the USA and international countries to share family history/stories, laugh, and just enjoy the familial bond.
Our family reunion has become an annual tradition that is always held during the third weekend in July. No one dare plan anything else! Festivities commence in the host city on Thursday with registration and typically a fish fry. Friday is reserved for sightseeing and ends with a banquet that celebrates our accomplishments. Saturday, the most important day, is picnic day, which includes games, good food, and family lineage workshops. Saturday night is spent hanging out with family. We end our weekend with a lively church service on Sunday morning.
Our annual reunion has become more than just food and games. Approximately 10 years ago, a family song, “We Are the Basses,” was written to the tune of “We Are the World.” We developed our own version of Bingo, called “A BASS” that teaches us our ancestry. In 2002, the Bass Family Reunion became a 501©(3) nonprofit organization. In 2012, the organization will sponsor educational scholarships for our members and the community. We are reaching beyond the boundaries of family.
Family members continue to stay connected through the year with the family directory and quarterly newsletter. Also on Facebook and family website, members can chat, exchange pictures and share current events.
So how will CustomInk help the Bass Family Reunion? Previously, we relied on family members’ candid snapshots; assistance from CustomInk© would provide professional, high-quality pictures throughout the weekend, that truly reflect our legacy. In addition, CustomInk© would help to provide never-before-offered specialty items, such as backpacks for our children to promote education and water bottles to promote wellness. These customized items would display our family pride throughout the year and throughout the country. Lastly, a CustomInk© donation toward food and beverages would reduce cost to families that may not have been able to afford to participate otherwise.
With CustomInk’s help, the Bass Family Reunion will definitely win more of our family members over!