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I’m almost too embarrassed to send this in, but because I know other families have the same issue, I want to know how do you stop folks from coming to reunion events with baggies, aluminum foil, and Tupperware to take food that they didn't pay for or help get or prepare? Especially when they start bagging food before the event is over?
This is a challenging situation! Although you don’t want to embarrass or alienate family members, their behavior does need to be called out. But first you need a strategy regarding the food. For example, any excess food will be taken to the family suite at the reunion hotel. Family can go to the suite to eat the food during the hospitality hours. Or the food can be stored in the family suite and served at the next day’s workshops. Another strategy is that you can only take home the remainder of any dishes that you brought to the event. If specific family members paid for the food then only they are entitled to any left-overs.
At any event where food is served, announce at the beginning of the event, when the food is served, and again just before the conclusion of the meal that the food isn’t available to bring home. The announcement should be done in a loving manner with a little humor so that the family is receptive to the instructions.
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