Everyone loves a backyard party in the summer! But not everyone wants to go through the hassle of preparing their home and yard to be the host. We’re here to suggest that ANYONE can be an outdoor host extraordinaire with these 6 easy tips.
[Read Get Your Home Graduation Ready for a great checklist to prepare your home for entertaining!]
1. Choose a simple food theme.
Choosing a food theme helps narrow down what you feel like you need to provide, and helps your guests know what to expect. Think fun and easy, like taco bar, ballpark snacks, or campfire & cocktails. When in doubt, fresh fruits and veggie trays are always a fantastic choice for summer! If you want your guests to bring anything, let them! Choose a few easy options for them to pick from.
2. Borrow from your indoors.
No need to go buy anything new! Bring out an indoor/outdoor rug to define your entertaining space, add some throw pillows to your seating, and use a throw blanket as a tablecloth or runner. Go ahead and bring your dining table and chairs outside for the event. Add a few vases for some fresh flowers or greenery, and choose a few decor items to use as centerpieces. A string of twinkle lights is an easy way to add some magic!
3. Make a bar cart or drink serving area.
If you have a bar cart inside your home, wheel that baby outside! If you don’t have one, simply set up a table area with beverages, glasses or cups, an ice bucket, mixers, and serving utensils. A small sign listing drink options makes it a true self-serve station, allowing you to play host instead of bartender!
4. Set up a game area.
Define the spaces where guests will be participating in games. For card games, a low coffee table or picnic blanket with pillows on the ground will do the trick. For games that require more space and movement, like bags or horseshoes, set up the area ahead of time–being careful to avoid breakables and quieter seating areas.
5. Consider the weather.
Rain or shine, your party guests will appreciate prior preparation. Umbrellas, awnings, and canopies are great for keeping the rain off, but they’re also helpful for guests wanting to get out of the sun. Be prepared for whatever weather you get by preparing areas indoors and out so that guests can choose for themselves where to gather.
6. Think like a guest.
Partygoers will need to use the restroom, so make sure the path to get there is clear, with lots of rugs for wiping feet. Consider adding extra hand wipes, sanitizer, and paper towels outside for guests to take care of messes that surely will come up throughout the event. Check your walkways for tripping hazards, consider your guests’ mobility needs, and have lots of extra chairs ready for people to gather and sit as needed. Will your guests bring kids? Set up an area with toys and supplies for kids, like sidewalk chalk, bubbles, Jenga, or even a sandbox.
Hosting an outdoor entertaining event doesn’t have to be full of stress and take months to plan. With a little bit of strategizing, you can enjoy a party that’s as easy and breezy as the summer weather!