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Old 02-22-2011, 01:01 PM
 
410 posts, read 808,808 times
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Hello All!

My brother-in-law has just retired from USAF. Sis is planning a celebration and I want to help. This will be an indoor/outdoor venue at home, Part of it will be catered, but there will also be grilling of the meat (yesss!!). I'm seeking feedback from folks who have attended a similar event in our fine military city. Would appreciate any ideas i.e. songs similar to "American Soldier" for a slideshow we want to put together, decorations, or pretty much anything that was memorable to the attendee. God Bless!
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Old 02-23-2011, 02:58 PM
 
741 posts, read 822,033 times
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Never been to one.Many of the parties I've seen in the Universal City-Schertz-cibolo area have been at various restaurants for retirements and awards.Seems the whole office goes at lunch time. Haven't heard of anything like your family is planning, but think it's nice.
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Old 02-24-2011, 07:31 AM
 
410 posts, read 808,808 times
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Thank you fritos56! He served his country with much honor/pride and his family & friends want to show our love and appreciation. He doesn't know yet we are planning this. Thank you again for the kind words.
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:03 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
8,400 posts, read 20,157,873 times
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I've been through many of these, so I hope I can provide a few helpful observations…

First, these things run a wide gamut; from squadron parties where food and copious amounts of alcohol are involved, to nice, formal sit-down dinners where a host/MC runs events. It all depends on how big of a gala you want to hold. Keep in mind that the actual retirement ceremony has already occurred, so this should be a bit more relaxed and friendly although some folks like to continue at that level. I think the kind of celebration you hold depends on the individual, most flyers tend to prefer blow-outs that rival the toga party in Animal House; more conservative types like the suit-and-tie affairs.

If you do go somewhere public, such as a restaurant, try to find one with a separate room where you can stage this event. I've been to numerous luncheons where the presentations, speeches, etc were a bit distracted by and to other patrons.

If you can swing it, a slideshow presentation of pictures from throughout his career is usually well-received. Of course the logistics of actually showing it at the event can take some work, and if you do go that route be sure the location can support it (you need it kinda dark so people can see the presentation, plus you need the equipment to show it) and do a test run before the actual event.

These celebrations are also where more personal gifts are presented to the retiree. It doesn’t have to be something elaborate such as a gold watch or new car (although both would be nice!), but it’s always nice to have something given to the honored retiree.

Lastly, logistics can dictate when you have the event. Luncheons are nice but usually last at least two hours. Add in travel time and many folks may not be able to be away from work for that long. Evenings or weekends tend to ensure better turnouts, the latter especially if friends or family are coming from out of town.

It’s not easy to organize such an event, but I can tell you it will be gratefully appreciated and remembered!

Good luck and let us know how it goes!

Cheers! M2
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