Summer is a time when people can relax and enjoy each other. It's a season of parties, weddings, and fun! If you have a spacious backyard, throwing a backyard barbecue is a fabulous idea to celebrate this season. What can you do to ensure your barbecue is the talk of the neighborhood, friend group, or family? Here are six ways you can make your barbecue unforgettable.
One of the main things you can plan to avoid is running out of food and drinks. Give yourself a little margin in your shopping if one of your guests comes over after having missed breakfast. If kids are at your party, don't underestimate those little stomachs! Balance your buns and meat. Keep your chicken-to-veggie ratio on your kabobs consistent. Remember the condiments. Keep those chips and dip bowls full. Offer some veggie options. If you have sodas or alcohol, make sure your stores are chilled when they need to be, and there is a local convenience store you can run to in case of emergency. Having extra ice is also usually smart.
Another element that could negatively affect your guests is the seating. They will be at your house for a few hours at least and can't be standing all the time. Do they have comfortable places to sit to eat or to lay back and lounge? Ensure your outdoor furniture is up to par, or grab a few extra outdoor pillows to cushion your chairs on your way out of the store. Beanbag chairs may also be a fun option. Comfort may not be particularly "memorable," but it's something that catches your attention when it's missing.
It is summer, so the sun is strong, and things can get pretty toasty outside. Even if people have a good time, if a nasty sunburn follows that good time, that may be the only thing they end up remembering about your party. The problem is, it's not something you notice or think about until it's too late. As the host, plan ahead! Get sunscreen. Set up umbrellas. Consider buying some extra hats. Having sunscreen and shade options available at your barbecue can make the difference between the good memories being foremost or a bad sunburn dominating everything.
Music can set the mood, so use it to your advantage! High-energy music or relaxing smooth jazz can contribute to your atmosphere, even if you don't realize it. Songs that people know and want to sing along to can create a karaoke opportunity, an activity that nearly always results in goofy antics and laughter. Other songs might encourage people to dance, especially if you have the space for it. Decent speakers are critical since it doesn't matter how good your music is if no one can hear it. Once you have set up your speakers, prepare a playlist or nominate someone to be the DJ, so you can be sure you have music covered.
Bring on the fun! This is already written into your entertainment plan if you have a pool. Pools offer opportunities for water games like Chicken, Marco Polo, water basketball, soccer, or volleyball. Splashing and waves are part and parcel of a backyard pool.
The absence of a pool could make for an even more exciting setup. Ask your guests to bring bathing suits. Grab some water guns, a nearby hose, and a few packs of water balloons, and you are ready for Water Wars! It's a great way to cool off and raise the energy level for your party. When people engage in a fun activity, they are more likely to be in a positive mood and ready for whatever other games may come next. Such games may include lawn games like corn hole, giant checkers, or a scavenger hunt. There are many different ways to help your guests have a good time. In addition, quirky games are memorable in and of themselves and offer lots of opportunities for noteworthy incidents that could go down in history.
If your party is going into the evening, why not do a bonfire? If you already have a pit, great! If not, consider renting one?—it will definitely surprise your guests. You may even think about buying your own. There are portable firepits you can set up. Some are even collapsible for easy maneuvering. Having a fire into the night gives a festive feel to any party. Plus, you have the opportunity to make s'mores or roast cinnamon rolls on a skewer. You could even melt some chocolate or marshmallow cream over the fire and do a mini fondue with disposable toothpicks and fruit pieces. Sometimes all you need is something unexpected to make your event impressive and unforgettable.