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Summer Picnic Party Ideas: How to Have Fun in the Sun

No matter what you are celebrating, a summer picnic party is the perfect way to enjoy the warm weather while it lasts. If you want to take the celebration outdoors, here are a few ideas for throwing a picnic party and having some fun in the sun.

Photo credit: Andreas Duess from Toronto, Canada -commons.wikimedia.org


Play Summer Games

Nothing says summer like setting up a net and playing a casual game of volleyball or badminton with party guests.  Here are more picnic games for your summer shebang:

  • horseshoes
  • tug of war
  • pie-eating contest
  • three-legged race
  • Bocce ball
  • croquet
  • sack race
  • egg and spoon relay
  • scavenger hunt
  • capture the flag


Sunaptic Summer Picnic (July 2005) 018
Photo credit: Jame and Jess on Flickr

If it’s really hot, plan some water games to keep your guests cool and entertained. Some fun water games include the following:

  • Water Balloon Volleyball:Instead of a ball, use a water balloon. Get a partner and use a towel to catch the balloon (without popping it), and launch it back over the net.
  • Water Baseball:The ball is a wet sponge, the bases are large buckets of water.
  • Water Limbo:Have guests do the limbo, but use the water stream from a hose as the limbo stick.


Take Safety Precautions

No matter what you choose to do during your picnic, make sure your guests stay safe and healthy. Here are some safety concerns to consider:

Too Much Sun. Help guests have fun outside without suffering sunburns, dehydration, or heatstroke. Provide plenty of water, and encourage small kids to drink regularly—especially if they are running around playing games. Also provide sunscreen, and mention hats and sunglasses on the invitation so guests can come prepared.

Kids Wandering Off. When you are throwing a party with lots of children, there will likely be lots of chaos. It’s easy for children to wander off unnoticed, so create a system to help you keep track of your guests. Give everyone a buddy, and have them keep an eye on each other. Or give everyone a number and randomly call for a count off.

Food Allergies. Make sure you know about any food allergies or intolerances your guests have. Young kids may not remember or be vocal about the foods they are allergic to, so speak to their parents beforehand. Provide other food options for guests that can’t partake in the main dishes served at your party.

Bad Weather. Unfortunately warm summer months are not immune to bad weather. Have a backup plan in case it rains on your picnic. Don’t let kids play out in the rain if there is lightning.


Control the Insects

Another safety concern you should have as the host is bug bites and stings. To avoid them, and to keep harmless bugs from being a plain old nuisance, do everything you can to control the insects in your yard. Here are some ways to keep your party bug-free:

  • provide insect repellent
  • hang fly and wasp traps
  • light insect-repelling candles

If the party will be held in your home or backyard, consider calling a professional ahead of time. A little visit from a company like North Shore Pest Detective Ltd, an exterminator inVancouver, can go a long way in making your home and yard free of pests.


Decorate Your Yard

Once the activities have been planned, the guests invited, and the menu finalized, it’s time to consider the decorations for your picnic. Themes are a great way to create a friendly, summer atmosphere. Popular themes include rustic country decor, bohemian decor, and patriotic decor. Other common decorations for summer picnics include the following items:

  • flowers
  • pennants
  • strings of lights
  • Tiki torches
  • tablecloths
  • quilts (for picnicking on the grass)


Picnic parties are a casual way to enjoy agreeable company and enjoyable weather. Use these ideas and come up with your own to throw the perfect picnic and have some fun in the sun.

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