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I am trying to plan a Fraternity Parents Day for the 2013-2014 school year. Our chapter has never had events like these before, so I have no base to go with. Our school also doesn’t have a football team, which is a main staple of a Dad’s Day at many universities. Also, I simply cannot think of anything that would be entertaining for a long period of time for a Mom’s Day. The town my school is in is very small and there isn’t a whole lot to do. What kind of events would you suggest for a successful Dad’s and Mom’s Day?
Good question – but you are going about planning your fraternity parents day event all wrong.
Your parents aren’t looking to be entertained, and they definitely aren’t looking for a long event. They are looking for some insight into your life. They want to see what you do day to day. They want to meet your friends. They want to see what your fraternity is all about.
As such, keep it simple. A perfect fraternity parents day event would be a cookout at the house. Realize that the event doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money or be that elaborate to be a good.
Start by having the chapter president say a few words to welcome the parents. Never forget to thank them for all the support they give you. Then, maybe show a slideshow highlighting recent chapter events. This will give the parent’s a great look into what the chapter has been doing, and will be a great conversation starter during dinner.
After dinner, thank them for coming and wrap up the event.
This all sounds very simple to be effective, and it is, but there are some other key points to remember:
1) Be a gentleman. Don’t swear and be on your best manners.
2) Make sure the house is clean. Your parents are checking out where you live as much as they are visiting you.
3) Clean yourself up. Iron your shirt. Shave. This is ones of those times where you want to put your best foot forward to make sure all parents have a good impression of the chapter. And remember that everyone needs to clean up. One or two dumpy brothers will become the impression of the entire chapter.
4) Don’t highlight any behavior your parents will not like. For example, it probably isn’t smart to have liquor bottles on display or show pictures of brothers partying a little too hard. Make it PC for Mom and Dad — that is what they want.
5) Have everyone (including the brothers) wear nametags. Your guests will appreciate this and it will make everyone feel more comfortable.
6) Have a kid friendly area. Set up a TV somewhere and put on a Disney movie to entertain kids. They last thing you want is bored and rambunctious siblings running around as they will ruin the event for your parents.
7) Make parking easy. Provide detailed instructions.
8) Stay on schedule. Be respectful of everyone’s time – especially since some parents may be coming from out of town.
9) Don’t hit them up for money. It is in poor taste and isn’t the right time to ask.
10) Say thank you and be sure your parents know you mean it. They went through great sacrifices in their life so you can be studying at a university. Be sure they know how much you appreciate it.
Parent’s day is a great tradition that every fraternity should do. Follow these few tips and you can be sure that yours will be a success.