Not everyone is into the carnivore side of a summer BBQ so it's good practice to have plenty of vegetarian alternative and to ask guested about any special needs they have (these could be health based or life choices but you'll make your guess feel amazing for making sure they are catered for).
Keep it comfortable
Make sure you've got plenty of seating, weather that be picnic blankets or deck chairs. Making guests feel comfortable can only be a good thing right!
Repel the bugs
I live by a river so I know how annoying bugs get. You can set up wasp catchers with old pop bottles and something sugary. In the evening burn Citronella Candles to get rid of midges and other bugs.
Prep as much as possible
Prep food and drinks as much as you can or buy pre-made so you don't spend all day cooking and you can enjoy the party too.
Don't be afraid to ask to BYOB
Organising a gathering can get costly so it's only fair for guest to bring something to contribute to the festivities. It doesn't have to be alcohol, someone could bring their famous secret recipe sauce past down through the generations.
Be weather proof
I'm writing this post in Britain and well you can't totally rule out rain so it's a good idea to have some space that is under cover. Gazebos are great and not that expensive for a standard one, if you're a bit more flush with cash you might consider a party shed (can only dream right?).
Have alcohol replacements
Some people might be driving or others just not wanting to over do it, having a choice of soft drinks or mocktails is a great way to keep everyone happy and ultimately more healthy.
Have some entertainment
In the past we've played games and always had a backing track of the radio playing quietly in the background. Keeping guests entertained means they are going to remember your gathering as great. You could invest in an outdoor board game, twisters always fun.
Parting into the night
If you plan on parting into the small hours make sure you've got plenty of lighting to keep things safe and sociable. Fairy lights make lovely mood lighting, pick up outdoor solar powered ones and you get free energy.
Have taxi numbers at the ready
Not everyone is organised or they don't know the area, having taxi numbers ready for anyone who needs a ride home will save time trying to find one online and you'll be guest free and in bed relaxing a lot quicker.
Have you hosted a summer outdoor gathering? any tips to add?
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