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5 Mistakes to Avoid When Planning an Outdoor Party

Planning an outdoor get together? Sounds like a lot of fun! Outdoor entertaining can be really rewarding… or a complete disaster. Make sure you don't make any of these five mistakes at your next shindig and you'll have a back yard full of happy guests.

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Planning an Outdoor Party

Mistake Number One: Overlooking the Weather - It's great to be optimistic when planning a party, but hoping for great weather isn't enough to make the sun shine. Hedge your bets by making sure there are covered areas for your guests to congregate if the weather takes a turn for the worse. If you don't have any tents, tarps, or awnings available, create a "just in case" plan for bringing the party inside. If you're hosting in a cooler climate, think about ways to keep your guests warm. Rent a patio heater that guests can gather around, or, if you're able, consider building a bonfire.

Mistake Number Two: Neglecting Entertainment - One of the best things about hosting outdoors is the array of entertainment options available. Don't assume your guests will amuse themselves! Have activities like badminton, croquet, or cornhole available. If there are young ones in attendance, kid-friendly activities like water balloons or wiffle ball are sure to be a hit.

Mistake Number Three: Assuming Your Guests Will Come Prepared - Don't assume that your guests will arrive with their own sunscreen, bug spray, or sunglasses. Make sure that everyone is comfortable by having a few supplies available. Create a little comfort station with hats, mosquito repellent, sunblock, sunglasses, bottles of water, and anything else an underprepared guest may need.

Mistake Number Four: Not Planning for Party Mishaps - People tend to be on their best behavior when attending an indoor dinner party. Once you take it outdoors, though, expect your guests to cut loose. This can easily lead to messes or even injuries. Have cleaning supplies on hand, as well as a small first aid kit. Reduce the risk of mishaps by serving drinks in unbreakable glasses. A little preparation can go a long way.

Mistake Number Five: Forgetting About Seating - When you host outdoors you sacrifice your couches and dining room table. Without these easy seating options, guests can end up standing for an uncomfortable amount of time. Be sure to provide plenty of places to sit. Patio furniture is a great place to start, or consider renting outdoor folding chairs. If the vibe is more rustic, consider asking guests to bring camping chairs along with them. If all else fails, spread out a few blankets and treat your guests to a picnic.

Avoid these five mistakes and enjoy a great get together. Happy hosting!

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