Ideas to Celebrate a 100th Anniversary

Written by elizabeth stewart
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Ideas to Celebrate a 100th Anniversary
Traditional foods from 100 years ago can be served at an anniversary function. (party food image by Bartlomiej Nowak from Fotolia.com)

Celebrating 100 years of service, business, good times or philanthropy is a significant occasion. The event should revisit the founding of the organisation where possible and give people a sense of what has been accomplished in a century. Even though the people who will be celebrating a company or organisation's 100th anniversary weren't there when it was established, it's still a significant historical chapter.

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Photo Spread

One way to showcase progress over the years is through a photo spread. Find photos of the building or interior over the years; ask long-term employees to contribute any historical photos they have. The photographs can be printed out and displayed on boards throughout the space; they can be shown and discussed as part of a picture slideshow presentation for the audience; and they could also be sold to interested parties to raise money for the organisation. Give guests the choice between purchasing individual pictures or a whole CD.

Events Timeline

A timeline can be included as part of a presentation or displayed around the room. If part of a presentation, use software that incorporates pictures and videos, creating an interactive and informative display. Guests may enjoy hearing about significant events and milestones in the organisation's history and seeing photographs from over the years. Timelines can also be displayed around a room on foam backing or other nice material. Important photographs can be used as backgrounds around or near the marked event.

Historical Games

If there's a big enough outdoor or indoor space, consider playing games or doing activities that were popular 100 years ago. Depending on the scale of the anniversary celebration, this can be as simple as singing a few old-fashioned songs, perhaps with piano accompaniment, or playing Monopoly or other board games that were established in the early 1900s. If there's ample space, shuffleboard or horseshoes can be played.

Honour Past Employees

Where possible, include a fact sheet with names and photographs of past presidents or notable figures within the organisation, long-serving employees, key benefactors, donors and other persons that have contributed to its continuing success. Current employees that have spent considerable time with the organisation can contribute their memories or even share a few words if a speech or welcoming ceremony is planned.

Overnight Guests

If the marking of the 100th anniversary is going to include many overnight guests, and the means and space exist, give guests the opportunity to lodge in a way that mirrors the past. This can mean primitive camping with no electricity or access to water, or something a little more comfortable, like primitive camping with access to nice rest room facilities. Give guests a choice between staying in standard accommodation or in lodging that reflects the conditions of 100 years ago.

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