Host a Backyard Barbeque

by Jo Jo Harder

A backyard barbeque is the perfect summer gathering for family, friends, and neighbors. It is also the perfect occasion to welcome dogs. And, there is nothing more inviting than the aroma of food cooking on a grill.

The Setting

It’s always fun to have a theme for your barbeque. For instance, if you are planning to celebrate a holiday such as Independence Day, Memorial Day, or Labor Day, you can develop a patriotic setting using red, white, and blue color scheme for table settings, flowers, invitations and menu.

Create an archway over the entrance to your home or backyard, using red, white, and blue balloons tied together with lots of ribbons. Ask guests to wear red, white, and blue attire to complete the picture.

Details matter even for outdoor entertaining. Set the table using red and white checked tablecloth and napkins. Fill a tin tub with ice for chilled beverages and watering cans with wild flowers.

The Menu and Activities

Keep the occasion simple and casual. Enjoying the glorious weather and the company of your guests is what a barbeque is all about. However, a few fun activities can certainly liven things up. Set up fun yard games for guests of all ages, like badminton, croquet, and horseshoe. If dogs are attending the event, organize canine races and tug of war.

A backyard barbeque is the ultimate relaxed get-together and an uncomplicated menu will set the tone for a memorable day filled with good times!

Grilled foods are always the centerpiece for a backyard barbeque. Serve a variety of food for the grill including hot dogs, hamburgers, steak, and corn on the cob. The most popular side dishes at a barbeque are potato salad, coleslaw, and baked beans. Have plenty of water on hand for doggies and raspberry lemonade and sangria for people.

Serve good old fashioned desserts such as apple pie or peach cobbler with vanilla ice cream. The piéce de resistance would be a flag dessert: Present a white sheet cake spread with whipped cream and decorated with halved strawberries and whole blueberries.

For the most part, this menu is for eating off paper plates, with plastic eating utensils. This makes outdoor entertaining easier. So grab a cold drink, put on the music, and fire up the grill!

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