Summer is coming – which means the blazing, oppressive heat will soon drive us all off our patios, where we are trying to enjoy the fresh spring air, and send us running toward the nearest available air conditioner. You know it’s important to squeeze the most out of the (relatively) pleasant spring weather while we’ve got it – so let us help you out today with eight ideas for springtime backyard parties. Let’s get started:
- Open an outdoor movie theater. This is a relatively simple idea – either purchase a projector (you can find them pretty cheap on Craigslist) or rent one from a local library, and hook it up to a laptop. Find a big flat surface on the side of your house and show some family-friendly favorites, and you will have the entire neighborhood clamoring for an invitation to your springtime party.
- Host a “glamping” party. “Glamping” is a portmanteau of the words “glamor” and “camping” – and it refers to camping in comfort and style. Want to get the kids excited? Host a glamping party, where everyone brings over tents and sleeping bags, and build a fire in the backyard so everyone can tell ghost stories and roast S’mores. It’s safe, easy, fun and you don’t have to worry about bears.
- Turn your backyard into a battlefield. Water guns, water balloons and water rockets have all become quite inexpensive in recent years – so consider hosting an all-out, heat-beating water war! Set up obstacles to provide cover and concealment, keep plenty of water on hand for extra ammunition, pick your teams and have at each other!
- Host a Cinco De Mayo party. Cinco de Mayo celebrates Mexican independence, but no matter where you were born, it’s a great occasion for a party. Sombreros make fun party hats (and provide plenty of shade from the increasingly hot sun.) Serve tacos, chips and guacamole and other perennial Mexican food favorites, and don’t forget pitchers of ice-cold margaritas! To make things fun for the kids, consider getting a brightly colored piñata and break out the blindfolds and broom handles.
- Host a spring harvest party. Though spring is historically considered as a planting season for farmers and gardeners, there are all kinds of wonderful fruits and vegetables that come into season around springtime. Apricots, cherries and strawberries start to pop up, and fresh asparagus is simply divine on the grill. Go all-veggie, or add your favorite meat and serve plenty of chilled white wine. If you don’t want to break the bank at the farmer’s market, go potluck style and ask your neighbors to bring their favorite dishes made from seasonal foods.
- Glow party. With recent advances in miniaturized lighting and LED technology, there are all kinds of amazing wearable and decorative light-up elements on the market today that far surpass the modest charms of yesterday’s glow sticks. Deck your backyard out in multi-colored lights and buy a few boxes of wearable LED jewelry and light up the night! The best part about this idea? Glow schwag has gotten insanely inexpensive in the last decade.
- Create a mini-festival. Why settle for one backyard party idea when you can create a variety of activities and decorations? Consider a mini-festival – set up a photo booth with fun costumes and props, build a makeshift bar and serve ice-cold concoctions, hunt all over the Internet for excellent backyard party games to play, or let your imagination run wild and come up with your own smorgasbord of fun ideas! Your party will be sure to have something for everyone.
- Host an All-American blowout. This works best in late spring, around Memorial Day, and is a perfect way to celebrate the holiday that commemorates our fighting men and women who have sacrificed for our great country. Flags, decorations in red, white and blue, hot dogs and some good old-fashioned country and folk music will get everyone in a patriotic spirit.
Got any other backyard party ideas? Let us know in the comments!
Gabe Coeli is a writer working out of Seattle. He doesn’t have a backyard (yet) but he’s hoping to have one in the future. In the meantime, he is living vicariously through all of you with backyard who can actually try out some of these backyard party ideas.