Planning a 4th of July barbecue can be one of the highlights of the summertime. 4th of July is a fun holiday in the midsummer that centers around barbecuing, friends, fun and enjoying the outdoors. Planning a barbecue does require a little effort but if you do it in enough time, the process can be fun rather than a chore. The most important elements for the 4th of July are the right food, decorations, guest list and of course, great weather!
While there's nothing you can do to guarantee great weather, it's a good idea to come up with a rain date for your party. Some things are just as fun inside as they are outside, but a 4th of July barbecue is not among them!
For the guest list, try to have a diverse crowd. 4th of July barbecue's are about fun, mingling and good conversation. Make a concerted effort to invite your liveliest friends and their families. It's always a good idea to let guests bring guests of their own so that new people have the chance to meet each other.
Food and drink are critical! Great summertime beverages are lemonade and iced tea for kids, but ice cold beers are an essential barbecue staple for the adults at the party. Make sure to have plenty on hand in coolers and ice buckets. You'll also want to make sure there's plenty of water around so everyone stays hydrated, especially if your 4th of July barbecue falls on a hot day.
Make sure to decorate! Part of what makes 4th of July so fun is decorations. Make sure you stock up on brightly colored streamers, red, white and blue tablecloths and tableware and small American flags to put everywhere and anything with the stars and stripes on it. Let the party transition from day to night by putting Christmas lights in the trees. Fireworks aren't a possibility for most barbecues but sparklers for everyone to hold and burn when it gets dark out are the perfect finishing touch.