the old barn

The dogwood Valley exterior at dusk with exposed rafters and a well-lit front porch

Outdoor Entertaining Checklist : Everything you need for a fun time

June 12, 2024

Make your entertaining space welcoming

Make sure your yard is presentable. If you have kids, this means picking up all the toys lying around. If you have pets, this means making sure their “business” is taken care of. If you don’t have either of those things, congratulations! You can probably skip this step.

Back Porch of Pecan Grove Floor Plan

Choose your outdoor entertaining menu

You don’t want anything that’s going to be too heavy or require a lot of prep work. Finger foods and appetizers are always a good bet. And you can’t go wrong with this four-ingredient cake!

Enhance your outdoor entertaining

By setting the mood with some music…something that will set the tone. play dance music if you want people to dance, relaxing music if you want the mood to be calmer and focused on something other than the music, like a wine-tasting.

Have all the necessary outdoor entertaining supplies

This includes things like plates, utensils, napkins, and cups. But it also includes things like bug spray and sunscreen…especially if you don’t have a screened in porch to keep the bugs and sun away! Many of our floor plans feature a screened porch.

And we also have a tutorial about how we turned this regular covered porch into a screened porch ourselves: How to build a Simple Screened Porch for your Home

Keep the bugs at bay while entertaining outdoors

No one wants to be eaten alive by mosquitoes, so make sure you have citronella candles or some other form of bug repellent on hand.

Keep your guests hydrated

Have a cooler filled with water and some refreshing beverages like lemonade or iced tea. I like to used beverage dispensers like this and if you’re keeping it casual this cup holder with marker gently reminds guests to put their name on their cup.

Have some fun games on hand

Lawn games are always a hit, but cards and board games work well too. Just make sure they’re easy to set up and clean up! We love these games!

Provide ample outdoor seating options

It’s great to have options at a table and conversation areas set up. Here’s a link to our favorite outdoor furniture items as well as screened porch materials.

Outdoor Lighting is key!

You’ll want to make sure you have some good outdoor lighting so your guests can see what they’re doing (and so you can avoid trip hazards). Citronella candles can provide both light and bug protection! We also love party string lights, and lanterns.

Have fun

Finally, relax and enjoy yourself! After all, that’s what outdoor entertaining is all about!

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