Wednesday, April 7, 2010
FAMILY REUNIONS- POCONO STYLE
Pocono Mts. - Why should you go through the headaches of planning a family reunion in the Poconos? Well the answer to that is
It's your family, someone has to do it!
If it's done correctly, it can be a whole lot of fun and the Poconos is just the place to do it.
If you really haven't seen your cousin in 12 years, isn't the time now?
Summertime in the Poconos is the perfect time for family members of all ages to have a good time and this summer is the time to do it.
Family reunions are great events; they're special because they give relatives, young and old, a chance to get reacquainted and in some cases with new babies or smaller children, you may be meeting them for the first time. Who doesn't like to share family stories and history and preserve memories; and to be truthful about the fact….family reunions are just a whole lot of fun!
The best way to plan your Pocono family reunion is to start by creating committees. Someone should be the Reunion chairperson, someone designated to take charge while others can be members of different committees to help organize all the events. The biggest challenge of all is when is it going to take place and of course, where.
At Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wilkins & Associates we have town-home communities where you can rent 3 to 15 units, and most likely, next to one another. By being close to each other, it enables the kids to simply walk from unit to unit without the worry of crossing highways, being alone in an area that is not supervised and putting any of the children or older members in an unfamiliar spot. Or, if you do want single family homes, we have them too!
The second thing you want to do is make a list of who will come. Assuming family members are located in at least the tri-state area, the Pocono Mountains offers highway driving distances and is easy to get to from the New England states, Upstate New York, New York City, New Jersey, Washington D.C. or Maryland and of course, with Interstate 80 going east or west, it's easy to get any of the family members to the Poconos with little confusion. Once they are here, everything you want to do is just a short drive away.
The best time to plan a family reunion is when the children are out of school, which is typically the third week of June; so any time after that through Labor Day is what's called "prime time" in the Pocono Mountains. All of the Pocono attractions are open and in full swing and our weather is very cooperative. Some times it may be cool at night for fire in one of the log burning fireplaces but during the day, it's warm enough to swim in one of the many pools, lakes or water parks scattered throughout the Pocono Mountains. "And what if it rains" you say….some of the best shopping around is in the towns of Jim Thorpe or Milford, at The Crossings outlet center, located in Tannersville and at Great Wolf Resort and Split Rock Lodge, the waterparks are indoors, which allows you to still keep the kids happy if it rains. And the time to book that vacation is now!
To get the number of units that you need, don’t wait too long. Vacations in the Poconos are typically booked in advance and you don't want to choose a weekend that is the same as the Pocono 500 Race weekends (which take a lot of rooms in the Poconos). Don't count short that it may book up before you are able to get in your reservations.
Having a family reunion "theme" is another way to have fun. Activities and games can be held at any of the parks in the Poconos including the Delaware National Recreation Area, Beltzville Dam, Big Pocono, and Sun Mountain Recreation Area if you choose to stay at Northslope II. All short driving distances once you are here in the Mountains.
Why not plan a barbeque or a clam bake? All of the vacation units that Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wilkins & Associates rent are fully furnished and able to accommodate you. But, if you're planning a meal or something that's a little bit bigger, it may not be a bad idea to pack away and bring with you certain pots and pans that may not be available in your unit. Always better to be safe than sorry.
Anything that can be cooked on a grill is fair game for an outdoor party and potluck works; we're sure each of the family members has their favorite recipe that they want to share. A lot of times, there are even traditional family favorites.
Don't worry about things to do either as a group or if individual families may want to just get away on their own for an afternoon. The Poconos includes such family attractions as Callie's Candy Kitchen and Pretzel Factory, S & S Speedway, Bushkill Falls, Claws & Paws, Country Junction--the World's Largest General Store, Quiet Valley Living Museum and many more. You can go online to 800 Poconos and see a list of members on the Pocono Mts Visitors Bureau's site.
But, if you prefer to plan an entire day and take the group somewhere, group rates are available and one of the committee members can take the time to get the best rate possible through group rates. Some of those amenities in the Poconos to consider for a day trip would be CamelBeach, located in Tannersville where there's a full day's worth of fun and if it's raining, Split Rock Lodge has H2 Ooh, an indoor waterpark so you don't have to be discouraged if you get a rainy day. A great day adventure is witewater rafting. Whitewater rafting is not as scary as the name may suggest. Proper ages for rafting is something you'll have to check into, but, it may also be not a bad idea to send the Dads and the teenagers out for a day while the Moms and the younger ones spend a quieter time at maybe Bushkill Falls where they can walk and see the water falls as opposed to rafting down them.
Photos are a must, and bringing you camera is one of the most important things to pack when you come away on a vacation.
While old fashioned vacations used to be Friday to Friday, at Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate we offer stimulus weeks to accommodate your pocketbook and still get in the most fun. They are 5 day, 4 night stays attractively priced.
Once you've got your budget, and your location has been chosen, the rest is easy to do.
Well, that's about it; the next thing to do is call up your cousin Cathy and Uncle Bob; get their okay, start your committees and then, most importantly, call Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wilkins & Associates at 800-252-4601 and let us book that Pocono Family Reunion for you today!
Thomas R. Wilkins is CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wilkins & Associates, the one of the largest real estate broker companies in the Pocono Mountains. Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate rents furnished vacation condos, town-homes, and individual cabins throughout the greater Pocono region. Packages are available from 3 days, 2 nights to 8 days, 7nights.
Patricia Blank-Toombs, Vice President Sales and Vacation Rental Manager contributed to this article and is head of the Vacation Rental Department
Thinking about a family reunion in the Poconos, give us a call today or visit us online at www.wilkins1.com.