Backyard entertainment tips for the summer


Summer is the perfect time to take advantage of your backyard and host gatherings that create lasting memories. With warm weather and longer days, your outdoor space becomes an ideal setting for entertaining friends and family.

Have a read through some of our tips for creating the perfect backyard for entertainment, and how to make sure everyone (including the host) stays safe.

Creating the perfect outdoor space

Invest in quality outdoor furniture that is both comfortable and durable. Weather-resistant materials like teak, aluminum, or high-quality wicker are great choices. Arrange your furniture to encourage conversation, ensuring there are enough seating options for everyone. Do not forget to add some cozy elements like outdoor cushions and throws to make the space even more inviting.

Lastly, think about adding shade to protect your guests from the sun. Options like pergolas, umbrellas, or shade sails can make a big difference in the comfort level of your outdoor space. Not only do they provide relief from the heat, but they also add a stylish touch to your backyard.

Ambiance and lighting

Creating the right ambiance is key to setting the mood for your gathering – lighting plays a crucial role in this. Use a mix of string lights, lanterns, and solar-powered garden lights, to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Place lights strategically around the seating areas, pathways, and focal points to enhance the overall aesthetic.

Incorporate natural elements into your decor to bring a touch of the outdoors into your setup. Potted plants, fresh flowers, and even small water features can add to your aesthetic.

Adding personal touches like candles, tablecloths, and themed decorations can elevate the look and feel of your backyard.

Menu planning for summer gatherings

A successful gathering always includes delicious food and drinks. For summer parties, focus on seasonal and refreshing options. Incorporate local Canadian fruits and vegetables into your menu to highlight the best of what the season has to offer.

Plan a mix of easy-to-prepare dishes that cater to different dietary preferences. Think about offering a variety of salads, grilled meats, and vegetarian options. Cold dishes like pasta salad or fruit platters can be prepped in advance, saving you time on the day of the event.

Do not forget about beverages! Offer a range of drinks, including non-alcoholic options, to ensure all guests have something to enjoy. Homemade lemonade, iced tea, and fruit-infused water are crowd-pleasers. For alcoholic drinks, consider setting up a DIY cocktail station where guests can mix their own drinks. This adds an interactive element to your gathering and allows everyone to customize their beverages.

Entertainment ideas

Keep your guests entertained with a variety of activities suitable for all ages. Classic lawn games like cornhole, bocce ball, or croquet are always a hit. Set up a few different game stations to keep things interesting and ensure there is something for everyone to enjoy.

If you have kids at the get-together, why not section off a spot for a good old-fashioned water fight. Buy water balloons or water guns from the dollar store. This will give the kids something fun to do which can also help them cool off in the summer heat.

Music is another essential component of a successful party. Create a playlist ahead of time with a mix of upbeat and relaxed tunes. Consider using a portable speaker to ensure the music can be heard throughout the backyard. If you want to take it up a notch, hire a local musician or DJ for live entertainment.

For a more relaxed vibe, set up a movie screening area with an outdoor projector and screen. This can be a fun way to wind down the evening and provide a unique experience for your guests. Just make sure to have plenty of blankets and pillows available for comfortable seating.

Your liability as a host

Being a responsible host means understanding your role as a host. While you may be focused on making sure everyone has an enjoyable time, it is important to remember that you are also responsible for keeping everyone safe.

Your responsibility to guests as a social host is not to be taken lightly – if there are libations at your gathering consider arranging transportation options, such as ride-sharing services or designated drivers, to ensure everyone gets home safely. Alternatively, be prepared to offer a place for guests to stay overnight if needed. If people are drinking and spending the night, why not have a campout? Have people bring tents, hammocks and sleeping bags.

For example, the Ontario Occupiers’ Liability Act notes that the “occupier of a premises has a duty of care to ensure that anyone on the premises, as well as any property those persons bring, are reasonably safe.” While rules can vary depending on where you live, it is never a bad idea to take the extra step to keep your guests safe.

How can home insurance help?

While you can do everything in your power to create a safe and fun environment, accidents can still happen. If someone gets hurt or an accident occurs on your property, your home insurance would likely kick in to protect you against any damage or losses. Liability is part of most home insurance policies and offers coverage if someone is injured on your property, financial obligations if you are sued or need to pay for someone else’s medical bills.

Summer backyard entertaining is a fantastic way to enjoy the season and create lasting memories with friends and family. By following these tips, you can transform your outdoor space into the ultimate oasis for entertaining.