The Backyard Party Checklist

It’s always helpful to have a checklist handy when you’re organizing a party, especially if you want the get-together to go off without a hitch. No matter the type of fiesta, whether it’s a birthday, graduation, or “just because,” this checklist can help you get prepared for an amazing party in your backyard. 

Check off these items as you go to make sure you’ve got everything in place for a sweet gig:

Send Out Invitations

Even if the party is on the informal side, it’s always smart to send out some type of invites, whether they’re e-vites or physical copies. Be specific with the location, date, and time, and make sure to include information on what type of party you’re throwing. Also make note of what kind of food you’re serving so people know whether to come hungry or not. Let your guests know what they can bring (if anything), and where to RSVP. This will help you prepare your space effectively. 

Prepare the Space

If you’re going to have a backyard party, your yard should look its very best. That means mowing the lawn, trimming the shrubs, and cleaning up outdoor furniture. We recommend doing this a day or two before the party for a fresh clean look. Don't save it for the morning'll have many other party details to tend to. 

Get a Party Tent

Wether you rent or buy, a party tent is an absolute must for an outdoor gathering. This way, weather won't ruin your fun. The benefit of buying a tent versus renting is the long-term investment, especially if you're one to throw many backyard gatherings. Check out our tent selection, complete with frame tents and pole tents! For help deciding what tent is best for you, read our pole tent vs. frame tent blog.

Consider the Food

Don’t be intimidated when planning the menu for your backyard party. There’s nothing wrong with keeping it simple with a buffet that includes vegan and gluten-free options, so everyone can eat. Or you could choose to have a potluck, where everyone brings a dish to pass and takes pressure off the host. Just don’t forget desserts!

Remember the Drinks

A great host will offer a variety of drinks to their guests, alcoholic and non-alcoholic. Grab some iced tea, pop, seltzers, or whatever you're favorite drinks are. Or, to make things easier, implement a BYOB rule. 

Details Are Key

It’s easy to forget plates, silverware, and napkins, but they are absolutely essential! They don’t necessarily have to match the decorations, but that’s always a nice touch. A good rule of thumb is that per every 15 guests, there should be about 200 napkins. 

Designate Trash Receptacles 

Have at least one trash can open and available, and keep an eye on it. This way, when it starts to fill up, you can promptly empty it. If you’re using glassware, designate a spot for people to put their dishes once they’re finished. 

Handle the Decorations

There’s no stopping the creativity on decorations for an outdoor party. You can go all out with colorful lanterns, bright tablecloths, balloons, or even a piñata. 

Curate the Music

Keep your audience in mind as you put together the music for your party. Compile a party playlist on a streaming service, and make sure you have speakers set up in strategic places around the yard so everyone can enjoy the tunes at a reasonable volume. 

Plan Your Seating

It’s always a good idea to have more chairs than the number of people who RSVP’d - you never know when you might need extra seating. If you don’t have enough options at your home, ask people to bring lawn chairs to make sure everyone has a spot to sit. 

Think About Shade and Light

If your backyard party takes place during the day, configure a few shady spots so your guests can get out of the sun if they want to. (Hint: here's where a party tent can come in handy as well!) If your party is happening at night, you can use string lights, lanterns, candles, and other outdoor lighting to create ambience. 

Creating Entertainment 

Think about the ages of your party guests when putting together an entertainment schedule. If you are hosting an older crowd, think of mini golf, frisbee, football, or quieter games like charades. If you are hosting young kids (or parents bringing their young kids), consider buying one of our bounce houses or a water slide! Party games, such as our 6' Sealed Air Frame Games make a great addition as well. Despite their height, they're easy and lightweight to set up, and kids love these larger-than-life-games. Your party is sure to be the talk of the neighborhood with one of these. 

Controlling Pests

To discourage insects, make sure there’s no standing water in the area of your backyard party. Using fans will help to keep mosquitos and flies away from the food, and having bug spray readily available will save people from getting bitten. You can also use citronella candles as repellant, as they are both pretty and effective. 

Planning Your Party

If you’re planning a backyard party, this checklist is the perfect place to start. Once you check off everything on the list, you’ll be all set for a get-together that people will talk about for summers to come. Give Pogo a call today at 716-566-5806. Our awesome sales team is excited to help you find the perfect items for your next big backyard soiree. And don’t forget to ask us about our monthly sales, too!