It’s an exciting time! The warm weather is back and it’s time to start thinking about planning your summer outdoor party!

Hosting an event is exciting, but it can also cause you a lot of undue stress. Even if you’ve planned parties in the past, it’s easy to be a little rusty after being inside all winter. No worries! You can plan your next outdoor party like a pro. Read on to plan your party and ensure that things go smoothly.

1. Write A Plan For Your Outdoor Party

Rather than just wing it – a plan beforehand will save you any possible headaches during the party. You may be a host, but you want to be able to enjoy your outdoor party as much as your guests do! Writing a plan will help you keep responsibilities at a minimum so you can relax and have fun. Here are some important things to consider:


· What are your goals? – this might be a strange question to ask for a casual outdoor party, but planning with a goal in mind will ensure a more successful outcome for you and your guests. Take a few minutes to think about what you want this party to accomplish.

· What items do you need? – is there a certain theme that you will need to get special items for? Tables, chairs, decorations, lighting, drinks, food, silverware? What about equipment – like a popcorn maker, a bouncy house (you’re never too old for that!), or a stage for the musicians? Do you need any items for the games you want to play? Make a list of the items you need to ensure you will get everything you need before the fun commences.

· Party equipment  – whether it’s a BBQ, bouncy house, canopies, tables and chairs, or portable toilets, it’s a good idea to reserve them as soon as possible. What about lighting – like laser lights, a fog machine, or a disco ball? The sooner you rent that equipment the better. You know that everyone probably has the same idea as you do since outdoor parties are so fun!

· Music  – be sure to reserve a musician or have a playlist and good stereo speakers ready. Don’t forget the type of music. Consider what your guests might prefer and make a playlist that will accommodate their different tastes.

· Are you planning to invite anyone who needs special accommodations? – think dietary restrictions, handicaps, children, and special requirements that a certain person might expect of you, like vegan options or non-alcoholic drinks. You want to make sure all of your guests have a good time and feel included.

· Space – how many guests do you have coming compared to the space you will have? Don’t forget to figure in extra tables, chairs, and any party equipment that you’re planning to have present on that day. You want to make sure that you invite the right amount of people. Making your guests feel crowded and uncomfortable from lack of space will definitely kill the outdoor party mood. Also, some people like to bring an unexpected friend with them, so be sure to count a few extra people into your numbers.

· Backup Plan – what if the weather gets rainy or too windy? Do you have a backup plan to keep the party rolling? Renting some canopy tents or having a backup indoor location ready might be a good idea.

2. It’s Time To Shop!

Now that you have your plan and your list is ready, it’s time to go shopping! It’s a good idea to get extra food and drinks, just in case one of your guests invites a friend or two!

Plan your shopping lists beforehand, making a separate list for each different store that you will need to visit. Having a shopping list for each store will help you to get the items quickly and make stressful events less likely to happen.

3. Recruit A Clean-Up Crew For Your Outdoor Party

Having to clean up everything after a big party can quell your party buzz really fast. Make life easier for yourself by recruiting some helpers before the party begins. That way, you will have some help – and an overall fond memory of your outdoor party for years to come. You could pass out small assignments to multiple people, making for a fast cleanup. Before you know it, you’ll be ready to throw another party soon after!


4. Plan Away!

Now that you have the basic planning outline, it’s time to get going! Using the above outline will ensure that you and your guests enjoy your outdoor party. They’ll be asking if you’re a professional! With this plan, you will be prepared for a load of fun and happy memories with your family and friends. Your guests will be sure to mark their calendars for the next party you throw!