Four Tips for a Successful Summer Party

It’s springtime in the Midwest! That means unpredictable temperatures and frequent rainfalls. Every now and then, though, we get a day that reminds us just why we love summer. Frequently, summer means outdoor parties, and lots of people like to throw those parties themselves. Whether you’re a seasoned summer party host, or just trying your hand at warm-weather get-togethers, here are a few tips to make your backyard shindig enjoyable and memorable.

1. Ensure that the party area is clean. Usually, parties and barbeques are in the backyard, so make sure the pavement is swept and your garden is presentable. Look at your home exterior—does it need a wash, or even a repaint? No one feels comfortable in a dirty environment, and those are important jobs (party or not!) ,so make sure to get them done! Additionally, if you have a deck or patio, you’ll want to clean and re-seal them yearly. Look into redecorating your patio or deck as well—it can be the new life of the party!

2. Keep drinks on ice (or in a garage or patio fridge, if you have one), and serve traditional summertime food. There is a huge menu of summertime foods, and it can include anything from hot dogs and burgers to grilled shrimp, chilled soups and beyond. Just make sure it is easy, fun to eat and not too heavy. Also, make sure to purchase enough food and drink, so no one goes hungry or thirsty. Summer parties tend to last for a long time!

3. Be prepared for the summer outdoors. Citronella candles not only keep insects away, but they add to a lovely summertime ambiance. You can mix them in with other candles too. Be sure also to have addtional lighting such as paper lanterns, so your guests aren’t left in an uncomfortable dark when night falls. Also, keep essential items such as insect repellent and sun block on hand. Summertime can be harsh, and you don’t want your guests walking away with mosquito bites and sunburns!

4. Have a fire! Few things say summer more than a nighttime bonfire, or even a smaller one in a pit. There are many stylish and affordable fire pits available; try to find one that matches the rest of your garden décor. Once the fire is started, bring out foods that are traditionally cooked over a fire. Marshmallows (and the makings for s’mores) and uncooked hot dogs are not only delicious, but also fun to make!

Once you begin hosting summer celebrations, you will find your own way of preparing. It’s never fun to go into new social engagements blindly, though, so these tips can help you get started. One of the most important aspects of being a good and gracious host, at any type of party, is to pay attention to your guests and their needs. If you do that, and follow the above advice, your party is sure to go off without a hitch!