Summer is here, which means it’s time to celebrate the influx of outdoor get-togethers coming your way. If you’re hoping to take advantage of the weather and throw your own party this season, we have our top must-haves for outdoor entertaining. Host without breaking a sweat and impress your guests to boot with these five items:
No party is complete without a good background track. Cell phone speakers are rarely loud enough nor sound great on full blast, and until homes come with surround sound for free, portable speakers are the best choice. They pack a huge punch for the cost and cordless functionality. Plus, portable speakers are usually smaller than a water bottle so they are easy to move to the center of the crowd. With affordable options from Dr. Dre and Bose, you can get a high-quality sound system that you can take anywhere, patio included. …just don’t leave it in the rain!
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The only thing worse than feeling overheated at a party is worrying about how sweaty you might look and if everyone is noticing. We’ve all been there. If you don’t have outdoor space in a particularly shady spot, save your guests from impending sweat and invest in an a sturdy, oversized patio umbrella. Any good host should make sure there is ample seating in the shade and umbrellas are a flexible way to cool down sunny spots. So too, they also up the ante on the appearance of your outdoor space. We recommend getting an umbrella in a statement color that pops against your current furniture for the designer look.
Our last point to urge you to add an umbrella to your cart? No one wants to eat potato salad that has had the sun beating down on it. Enough said.
Trays are a must for entertaining in general, not just a seasonal recommendation to have at your summer BBQ. While they save you a few trips from the kitchen to your guests, trays are so much more than their transport capabilities. Trays can be utilized in the decor and organization of your party, too. Currently, wooden trays are trending and we think they look great outside, especially when there are multiple. Use different trays to separate and organize items such as dishware and utensils, condiments, and drink accessories. Speaking of drinks… try setting out a tray of specialty cocktails that you can use to welcome guests with upon arrival.
If we didn’t convince you enough already, it’s time to ditch the disposable! Disposable dishware blows away, isn’t sturdy enough to hold more than a handful of chips, and, worst of all, creates tons of unnecessary, non-recyclable trash. Avoid finding the handful of plastic cups that blow away and hide under your deck post-party and make the better, more sustainable choice for reusable dishware.
Even if you are a novice in the kitchen, adding fresh herbs is an effortless move to kick up the presentation and taste of your dishes. Some ideas? Fresh mint is great to muddle into any summer drink, basil is a must with juicy, in-season tomatoes, and cilantro makes for an even tastier steak marinade. Growing herbs is relatively easy and the crops don’t require much growing space, either. Indoors or out, you can grow your own herb garden guaranteed to please the taste buds of guests.
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With the summer in full swing, it would be a mistake not to utilize your outdoor space! We hope our list of outdoor entertaining must-haves gives you the inspiration to tackle your next get-together with confidence. Remember to stay cool and to enjoy the party!