Summer is almost here, which means it’s officially time to kick back, relax and soak up the sun with your nearest and dearest. The best kind of outdoor party has great decor and plenty of food and drinks, so we asked the experts from Poppy & Pine and Mondo Market at Stanley Marketplace for tips on throwing a stress-free outdoor summer party that will have your friends and family coming back for more:
Party Décor – Nicole Landeck, Poppy & Pine
- Get it Green: First and foremost – do a good cleanup of your backyard the day before – pull weeds/mow grass/clean up flower beds/ trim bushes/hose off patio/etc. (or hire someone else to do this!!).
- Add some sparkle: Put up lots and lots of twinkle lights (borrow them from friends/neighbors and label each strand with a piece of tape with their name so you can get them back to the owner) and add candlelight – flameless of course. Try in jars or in lanterns hanging from trees, strewn across the backyard or in the tent/umbrellas for transition from day to evening.
- Color scheme: Try going monochromatic with a fun color as an accent for decorations, napkins, utensils, etc. It looks sleek, pulled together, and is easy on a budget.
- Flowers to fill the space and add life: Think about one larger floral statement piece for the table where food/drinks are being served and then find small votive vases to scatter on tables. At Poppy & Pine we can help you pick just the right greens and florals that won’t wilt as your day progresses – we know all about how to withstand the dry Colorado heat for a long day or evening! Stop by Stanley Marketplace to see us or you can even order online. BONUS: You can send florals home with your friends as a treat for them at the end of the night.
- Music! Make sure to have a good outdoor speaker that fills the space and make a playlist ahead of time that complements the vibe rather than overpowering it or distracting people from conversing – and of course as the event progresses, crank up the sound and have a good old fashioned dance party (make sure you invite your neighbors!).
- Fun baskets with sunscreen/bug spray and handheld misters if you know it will be an unusually hot day.
- Finally, plenty of water in addition to cocktails so your guests stay hydrated as well as can remember all the details of the fun they had the next day 😉
Ideal Party Food – Nic Farrell, Mondo Market:
- First, I like the think about welcoming guests, so I always make Cheese & Charcuterie Boards to graze and nibble on as they arrive. Don’t forget to have a cocktail/beer/wine and NA drinks iced and ready to serve! No one should have empty hands at a party.
- Salads are refreshing for an outdoor party – and easy. Pre-make a salad and stash it until time, or pick one up from us at Mondo: my favorites from the season are the Minted Farro Salad, Kale & Roasted Hazelnut or you can’t go wrong with our Classic Potato Salad.
- Outside parties mean one thing: grilling. Everyone always thinks about burgers and brats on the grill, which are great, but for a crowd I love another unique grilling idea: pizza! Always a crowd pleaser, and super easy: pick up some frozen pizza dough from Mondo Market, along with red sauce, fresh mozzarella, some Dodge City salami (my favorite – it’s studded with pint peppercorns and fennel pollen), and you can throw it all to cook on the grill instead of an oven.
- Don’t forget dessert! Finish an outdoor get-together with something easy and hand-held – I like home baked cookies and brownies. Make a platter of each, or combine them, and people can nibble away as the party draws to a close.
- Let someone else do the work: not adept in the kitchen? We just launched several Pre-Order Party options on our website – check it out if you want something easy to order and pick up before your next party: https://www.toasttab.com/mondo-market-stanley-market-2501-dallas-st-ste-168/v3/