(StatePoint) If you’re like many people, you’re more than ready to gather friends together. Whether you’re planning the bash of the century or just want to turn a run-of-the-mill afternoon into a bonified party, use these tips to make your outside gathering pop:
Barbecues are always popular, but you don’t need a huge grill set-up to entertain guests outdoors. In warmer weather, you may prefer to keep guests cool and well-fed with light bites like Vietnamese summer rolls, charcuterie, fresh dips, seasonal veggies, cold pasta and fruit salad.
Keep spirits high with fun activities. Lawn games like cornhole, Spikeball and oversized Jenga are perennial favorites. For those that prefer to take it easy, be sure to include games that can be played at the table, like Cards Against Humanity and all of its various iterations. Do you and your friends have a competitive streak? Set up a bracket system and host a knockout tournament. Winner gets bragging rights until the next party.
Hard teas are trending, hard. They make for a delicious daytime sipper on their own, but can also serve as the perfect base for warm weather cocktails — especially when they’re made from authentic ingredients. Lagunitas’ Disorderly TeaHouse, a 100-calorie, gluten-free, premium spiked, sparkling tea is brewed using guayusa leaves — an Amazonian botanical herb — and features natural fruit flavors, like yuzu lemon, raspberry and blackberry. Try it alone or make this simple slushie recipe your party’s signature cocktail: lagunitas.com/story/disorderly-teahouse-slushie. You can pick up the main ingredient — Disorderly TeaHouse — at Sprouts, Meijer, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and Safeway. Or you can have it delivered. For $5 off on Drizly, use the promo code “DTHCincodeMayo” between April 28 and May 8, code “DTHMemorialDay” between May 15 and May 31, and “DTHFirstTasteofSummer” between June 1 and June 22. (Courtesy of Drizly. 21+. New users only. Void where prohibited).
The right music can make a good party great. Be the perfect host (and DJ) by just hitting play on this already carefully-curated “Steep Cuts” playlist from Lagunitas. Featuring artists like Kurt Vile, The Linda Lindas and Jack White, it celebrates all things disorderly like mosh pits, sound blasting out of garages, and dancing with wild abandon: open.spotify.com/playlist/2E2GGB9TYIeOvvwjRY6VzX.
Be sure to make the most of your playlist with high-quality, durable speakers designed to deliver great sound in outdoor spaces over the revelry. Those that link to other Bluetooth speakers are a good choice for creating surround sound — perfect for that impromptu dance party.
Take the Party into Night
Should your party extend into the evening, you’ll want to be prepared. Remember that at dusk, the bugs come out in full force, so consider citronella candles to ward them off. For cool nights, consider having a heat lamp or smokeless portable fire pit on hand to keep guests nice and toasty. For ambiance and to illuminate the fun, hang string lighting or paper lanterns.
With this patio party checklist, you can give every party you throw this season something a little extra.