Each season has its good and bad points when it comes to entertaining. With the recent heat wave entertaining can sometimes take a back seat to just staying cool. Don’t let soaring temps keep you from getting your party on. Of course, common sense rules still and do apply. Hosting an ice cream social outside when the temperature is 85 degrees with sky high humidity isn’t a sensible option. Here are a few ways to take the party outside.
Timing is Everything
Schedule your shindig for late afternoon or early evening when the temperatures start to dip.
Rent a Tent
I’m not talking about Ringling Brothers size. Just something small and portable to fit a couple of tables under, and one that will allow enough elbow room for your guests.
If you have space on your deck this could turn out to be the perfect spot to dine. A deck also allows for tons of creativity when it comes to decorations. Seasonal plants, candles, lanterns and string lights work wonders for creating ambience.
If you don’t want to bring the good stuff outside you don’t have to. There are so many pretty and fashionable paper and plastic options available you may have a hard time choosing a favorite. On the other hand, if you want to use the real stuff it can still be done affordably. Visit your local dollar store. Just because something only costs a dollar doesn’t mean it’s not any good. You can get some very nice dishes, glasses and maybe even cloth napkins. If one breaks or the napkins get a stain, it’s no big deal.
Feed Me Seymour
One of the most important considerations for alfresco dining is the menu. As much as I love a hearty meal, I wouldn’t think of a menu chock full of my heavy favorites when the heat is unbearable. It’s safe to say you can grill almost anything. Aside from grilling you can also fry outside. With an outdoor fryer you can serve French fries, onion rings, fish, wings and the list goes on. Investing in small food umbrellas will keep you and your guests from swatting at the pesky uninvited guests. Speaking of pests, nothing spoils an outside dining experience like bugs. If you have a large backyard, and especially if you’ll be dining on your lawn think about having your yard sprayed. Commercially spraying is not always economical or environmentally friendly but there are eco friendly options.
Fun to Have and Do
A small wading pool can be used as a cooler. As the sun sets, use your fire pit to roast marshmallows. S’mores Bar anyone?
This one is at the top of my wish list. A movie projector with screen to have a lawn chair film festival.
Burgers and Brats
Southern Fried Catfish
Old Fashioned Cornbread
Blueberry Bundt Cake
Frangipane Peach Tart
Entertaining is as much about attitude as it is about the menu and place settings. Whatever you choose, make it fun and stress free. Start planning early, enlist the help of others and yours will be the party that everyone wants to come back to.
Eco-Friendly Pest Control