There’s a reason summertime is the perfect season for entertaining. It’s so effortless, so simple: fire up the grill, put on a fun playlist, hustle everyone outside and voila! Instant party.
At the same time, it’s easy to get stuck in a same-old, same-old backyard barbeque rut. Rather than face another overcooked hotdog and bowl of potato salad, mix it up by following these tips and tricks from our founders.
Pick and Stick to a Theme
Chief Relationship Officer Abbey Ferguson — who hosts a big, family-style Sunday summer every week — knows a thing or two about throwing a theme party. Breakfast for dinner? Go for it! Spanish-style tapas? Sí! Maryland crab boil? Ayup! Picking and sticking to a theme can make even the simplest backyard bash feel a bit more festive. Award yourself — and your guests — bonus points for dressing to impress in theme-inspired attire!
Get Creative with the Grill
During the summer, it’s customary for the grill to take center stage, and rightfully so. But you don’t have to limit yourself to burgers and brats. From avocados to zucchini, there are a slew of foods that somehow just taste better when cooked over an open flame. Brie, pizza, stone fruits, eggplant, cauliflower, and even oysters: they’re all amazing when grilled. When it comes to sweet treats, our CEO, Lauren Chitwood, recommends serving more than just dessert. “A s’mores bar is always a hit with my kiddos,” she explains. “I like to mix it up with lots of different toppings — think grilled banana or strawberries, toffee bars or caramels instead of chocolate, and fun little sprinkly things like toasted coconut, crushed almonds, sea salt and even chili powder.”
Serve a Signature Drink
Here’s a tip from Lexie Lancaster Larsen, our Chief Operating Officer, whose family is known for serving whiskey sours: serve a signature drink. “You could try to stock three different wines, a bunch of beer and everyone’s favorite flavor of hard seltzer. You could. But mixing up a big bowl of punch or Spiritless late summer sangria is way more fun — and it cuts down on the clean-up!” she says.
Use the Whole Yard
“Make use of unexpected corners, nooks and crannies,” advises Lauren, a former event producer. “Tack a sheet to the side of the house and project a movie onto it. Build a fire pit in the driveway. Put the slip-and-slide in the front yard so all the neighbors can see how much fun you’re having. When you really step back and look at it, your yard can present 1,000 creative and unique possibilities for entertaining.”
What are your favorite tips for easy, breezy, beautiful summer entertainment? Share with us on Instagram and Facebook!