With summer approaching, it’s time to start thinking about hosting an outdoor party. If you aren’t used to hosting parties, you may not be aware that it’s more than throwing together some invites and putting out some tables and chairs. It takes planning.
If you’re not sure where to start, don’t fret. We’ve got you covered. Here are 9 tips to help you throw an amazing outdoor party.
Pick a Party Theme
Before you even decide on who to invite and how you want the invitations to look, it’s best to set a party theme, for a few reasons.
For starters, a party theme will help you laser-focus your planning around the party. Next, it will streamline decorations, party games, food, and other aspects of an outdoor party. Last, it may even help you decide who best suits the kind of party you’re throwing, which will make your invite list easier to make.
You could go with a Hawaiian luau, or plan your theme around a particular event or holiday. It’s up to you! Whatever way you choose to go, party themes are a great way to get people invested in the party long before the festivities begin, and that’s what you want.
Send out Informative Invites
Now that you have a party theme planned, you have a good idea who this party will be good for. For instance, will your party theme be something that families enjoy, or is this a child-free soiree? Chances are your party theme will tell you.
One thing to keep in mind is to be informative with your invite. Ask yourself some questions:
- Does the theme call for helpful reminders?
- Does your party theme have special games your guests should plan for?
- Does the theme work hand-in-hand with a potluck?
- Is the party theme better suited for daytime, evening, or night?
With some of these questions answered, you can focus on being clear. Your invitation should keep your guests well-informed. Educate them about what to bring, how to plan, and what they can do to help out.
Create Party Favors
When it comes to party favors, you don’t have to go overboard. Just consider your theme, your guests, and something they’ll remember. Be thoughtful without spending a ton.
Mason jars with a recipe that goes with the theme are a good choice. Whatever it is, think of quality over quantity. Your guests will appreciate the thoughtful touch.
Create an Inviting Outdoor Party Space
Parties are only as good as the decor. Plan out activities for kids to have fun in different areas of the party. Be sure to clean up your patio furniture and outdoor spaces for an inviting space.
Consider lighting if your party will go into the night, and make sure you’ve thought about seating. Ideally, you’ll want different areas where people can collect so they aren’t on top of each other and can hold different discussions.
Where will your guests go to the bathroom? Will they walk through the house? If not, you may want to consider renting a luxury porta potty. By thinking about logistics ahead of time, you’ll be able to create a space that matches your theme and invites guests just as well as you do.
Let Food Steal the Show
Think about creating a party-themed banquet. Consider creating courses that can be changed out quickly as the party progresses. You may also want to consider having designated areas for snacking. Perhaps a patio with chairs set for conversations, next to a bar for self-serving cocktails.
Here are some things to consider for rotations:
- First course – cheese platters, snacks, and dips
- Second course – a selection of salads and fruit and vegetable trays
- Third course – party-themed entrees in a banquet style
- Fourth course – dessert station for kids and adults
Consider buying high-quality paper plates, cups, and bowls. Have trash cans in areas by food, and create areas for utensils all ready to go for efficiency.
Create a Bug-Free Zone
Nothing kills an outdoor party quicker than flies buzzing around, ants searching for food, and mosquito bites. Where you will have snacks, consider purchasing nets for food. Also, focus on environmentally-friendly options for keeping bugs away.
- Keep mosquitos away by planting some marigolds and lavender
- Create potpourri made of cloves and bay leaves to keep ants away
- Make a spray bottle with water, cloves, and peppermint to keep spiders away
This will help create an environmentally-friendly, bug-free zone for your guests.
Create a Cocktail
You may want to create an inviting space for specialty drinks. Think about your theme and try to create some choices that would match the theme you are going for. Because most outdoor parties are planned around the summer, cocktails with fruit are always a hit.
Plan for Weather
Depending on where you live, you’ll want to consider the fluctuations in the weather as the day goes on. Have a few areas for shade. Use that extension cord and place some fans for a respite from the heat.
As the sun goes down, create warm spaces. Have a couple bins with light blankets to wrap in. Start a fire pit and roast marshmallows. Serve both hot and cold beverages to help manage the weather.
Think About the Neighbors
It goes without saying that it makes sense to let your neighbors know about your plans. If you plan on having a lot of people over, think about parking. If you’ll have music playing, let your neighbors know.
Being a good neighbor is being a good friend. Be respectful to your neighbors and they’ll appreciate it.
Have Fun With It
The most important thing to keep in mind when throwing an outdoor party is to have fun with it. Planning a party doesn’t have to be stressful. Consider some of the things on our list to help create an unforgettable outdoor party.
For more ideas on how to be the perfect party host, check our blog for more informative articles to help you plan, celebrate, and host a party like a professional.