Your summer weekends probably are booked early in the season, but that doesn’t mean you can’t plan a great party ahead of time, or on a different day of the week. Friday evenings are often good times for summer parties.
Stock Up for the Party
Check to see what you have and what you need for your next summer party, before you invite people. If you want each person to bring a covered dish, you won’t have to spend the whole day prepping for your party. Stock up on napkins, paper plates, and disposable tableware, if you use it, before the day arrives.
Prepare the Party Location
Choose the best place in your house – or behind it – for your get-together. Start early, if you need to, in order to have that area looking especially bright and cheerful. Allow for an alternate space if your primary choice is a backyard deck or patio. Then you can move the party if rains intrude.
Finger Food and Drinks
Prepare an appetizer tray or two, and mention it to guests when they arrive. This will give you more time after everyone arrives, to visit. Arrange the food you are preparing as the guests arrive with their personal favorite side dishes to share. If you are offering mixed drinks, refresh yourself on how they are made. Otherwise, just make sure that all your drinks are on ice.
Your guests will almost never mind bringing a dish to your party. If they want to bring something easy like watermelon or other fruit, that will allow them to help without having to spend time fixing something, says Better Homes & Gardens.
Set out your paper tablecloths and tableware, if you are using disposable tableware. If you use your everyday stainless place settings, place them in stacks so that each guest can grab what he or she needs. Then enjoy the good times spent with friends and loved ones.