When it comes to throwing a neighborhood bash, there’s no better time than the summer. Everyone can gather round to enjoy the gorgeous weather, and being outside opens up so many more possibilities for cooking and other activities. But if you’re new to the hosting game, there are a few things to keep in mind before sending out those invitations.
Keep the list manageable
Don’t overwhelm yourself out of the gate by inviting more people than you know you can accommodate. Depending on the size of your home and yard, it’s best to limit your list to 20–30 adults.
Bigger isn’t always better
For the menu, it may seem best to include as many varieties of foods as possible, but this isn’t always the case. Keeping the menu clear and concise (a handful of appetizers, one or two main dishes, and two desserts), will prevent an overload of leftovers and cleanup.
Make cleanup a breeze
Instead of making guests enter your home to use the kitchen trash can, consider hanging trash bags strategically around the party to make it easy for guests to throw away their plates and cups. You could also buy cheap trash bins at the store to lay around, too. But be sure to keep away from food and activities to avoid bugs from ruining the good time.
Stock up on games
If there will be kids at your party, you should have plenty of games and other entertainment around for them to enjoy (or even for the adults, too). Water games are great in the summer—just be sure to have towels on deck to let guests dry off!
Raise money while having fun
Throwing a neighborhood party can put a drain on your wallet, so it’s not overstepping to ask guests to bring a dish, drinks, or paper products, or to even throw in a few dollars for the cause. Everyone will have more fun knowing they contributed to the good time.