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Reunion food

These are some ideas for feeding your reunions. Some reunions do their own cooking, others find many other sources for food, restaurants, caterers, delis, carry out. You need to decide how to best feed your group at the most affordable price. Some groups pool their resources and buy food together, others pay individually. These are all decisions that have to be made based on your individual needs. How did you do it? E-mail us.

How Many?! How Much!?

cover How Many?! How Much!?

How Many?! How Much!?
A Step-by-Step guide to cooking for a large group
is designed to help anyone who is cooking or planning events for large groups.

Don’t expect a cookbook. It divides the process of feeding many hungry people into 13 easy-to-follow steps, making it useful to both the novice and veteran event organizer.

How Many?! How Much!? shares ways to prepare meals for 25 to 1,000 that are creatively planned, well run, priced accurately, and served hot and delicious. It includes chapters about menu planning, recipe costing, calculating expenses, recruiting helpers, designing a program, planning seating, plating and presentation, and more.

Author Jennifer Cole’s light-hearted, easy to understand style comes from 15 years of experience running a catering business and cooking for large groups in restaurants, summer camps and churches. Jennifer says, “I love cooking, I love cooking for large groups, and I want to share ways that make this kind of cooking easier for everyone.” Available online at or call 1-414-263-4567.


The cookout at the Clarksdale (Mississippi) High School Class of 1980, 35th reunion.
Photographed and produced by Calvin (Juice) Clark.

Remember summer reunion food
Share your special reunion recipes now; while they're still fresh in your mind or recipes you look forward to at your next reunion. We're looking for a potpourri of favorites and why they are. Include an anecdote, vignette, story, even pictures to go with the recipe to ensure our serious consideration. Recipes and stories may constitute as articles in Reunions magazine and sometimes as reprints. Winners receive a year's subscription to Reunions magazine. Send to Reunions Magazine, Inc., PO Box 11727, Milwaukee WI 53211-0727; fax 414-263-6331; or e-mail us.

The importance of food is very different from reunion to reunion.
This is a story about how one family engages the kids in producing food that maintain many family traditions. The Seidemann kids make the pizza dough for baking in an original stone oven that also bakes Seide-buns and rye bread for reunion fundraisers. Yes, the pizza is out of this world!
By Kathy Mangold, Special to the Journal Sentinel, JS Online: July 23, 2008


Seideman sausages
For over 70 years the Seideman Family Reunion has been a one day gathering of over 400 kin from far and wide. They meet on the farm settled in 1856 by ancestors Friedrich and Marie Rosine (Koch) Seidemann. Among the reunion amenities at the site is a Brat stand which serves juicy hot dogs and bratwurst. There is also a beer stand, for this is Newburg, Wisconsin, after all and a family of German descent. And, finally, there is a candy stand where many cousins make wonderful root beer floats.

Getting there with food

Q? We received the following question in anticipation of a summer reunion.
I live in Florida and have a family reunion in Illinois coming up. Everyone has to travel some distance. I'm looking for new food ideas that are easy to travel with and fix. I can't count on an outdoor grill at this resort. Can you send me some ideas of food that can travel, be different and good and easy to fix? Kathy
We shared the question with readers and received this genuinely clever idea family reunion tradition.


A! To Kathy in Florida,
We have a family reunion at Pickwick Landing State Park Lodge on the border of Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama every two years. We rent a suite in the lodge for the weekend. It has a full size refrigerator and microwave.
We make a list of food for everyone to bring. We plan the meals and menu well in advance, and email what and how much each family should bring.
Our favorite meal is the “Southwest Extravaganza.” I usually bring the fajita meat and my big electric skillet with a lid. I buy pre-marinated fajita meat (beef and chicken) and cut it up before we travel. I freeze the meat in ziploc bags, then put them in the cooler. The frozen bags help keep other food cold and the meat is partially thawed by the time we arrive. Everyone else brings cheese, sour cream, guacamole, tortillas, taco meat, shells, queso and chips, hot sauce and tomatoes. After I cook the meat in the skillet I throw in green peppers and onions. The whole sixth floor of the lodge smells wonderful!
From Diane Richmond, Denton, Texas, Jones Family Reunion.

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