(NC) - Ocean Spray offers these simple suggestions and tips for ways to enjoy Canada all summer long.
Themed backyard get-togethers are a perfect way to spend time outdoors with family and friends. Choosing a theme is as simple as drawing ideas from your local community calendar and letting your creativity run free.
The convenience of the Internet has made party planning so easy. Free online invitation sites, such as Evite, allow you to develop a guest list, send your invites and track RSVPs with a few clicks of the mouse
Paper invites are also a great way to bring your theme alive. For example, write details on a jazz sheet music for a jazz inspired celebration, on small maps from around the world for a multicultural theme or attach party information to a candy apple if you are hosting a pre or post-carnival get-together
Choose simple, no-hassle dishes that can be prepared in advance of your celebration and that can be kept in the refrigerator or freezer for a day or two until you're ready to party
Set The Scene
Festive decorations create the atmosphere and enhance the mood of your party.
Look for innovative ways to enhance the theme of the party. For example, play soothing jazz music and "rename" all your dishes after jazz musicians for a jazz festival inspired party, use little paper flags from countries around the world as picks for hors d'oeuvres if you are celebrating a multicultural event, or fold paper napkins into paper airplanes and anchor your picnic blanket with toy planes if you are enjoying the action in the skies at an airshow
Light up an evening party safely and inexpensively by placing votive candles in glass jars, weighted down with a few pebbles, along the walkway. The lighting will help guests find their way, and the jars will ensure that the candles aren't hazardous.
You can also fill pails with sand and insert tapered candles
Instead of a typical floral centrepiece, set large decorative basins or bird baths on the ground at each end of the table. Fill with water and float roses, gardenias or peonies
Set-up an open bar and let your guests serve themselves. Fill galvanized pails with ice for drinks and set out cocktail glasses and festive garnishes for the final touch
These fun finishes will make your party memorable and leave you with enough time to enjoy.
Freeze cranberries, raspberries or mint leaves in ice cubes and add to the punch bowl
For a refreshing non-alcoholic cocktail, add sparkling soda to an Ocean Spray® Cranberry Cocktail or White Cranberry Cocktail, serve in fun patio glasses and float a few frozen cranberries in the glass for a
Provide your guests with small disposable cameras to capture the event and have a computer savvy friend help you set up a post-party website with photos and party stories to keep the memories alive
Don't let it rain on your party! Tall beach umbrellas not only provide a little shade from the sun, but also serve as protection from a summer shower
Burn decorative citronella patio torches to keep bugs away and cover food to keep the bugs out
Find a collection of small smooth stones to use as weights for napkins and paper plates on an outdoor table to avoid having the wind blow everything into your neighbour's yard
Everyone knows the best food is eaten with your fingers! If serving sticky finger foods such as ribs, chicken or corn on the cob, set out a tray with pre-packaged damp towlettes