Fourth of July Fiesta
Independence Day is around the corner, and it's the perfect excuse to get friends and family together for a red, white and blue event.
Make it Happen: Keep the colors patriotic: Enjoy cocktails spiked with fresh blueberries and strawberries, like this Country Thyme cocktail or this Rainforest Cooler Caipirinha. Decorate with flags and American themed-flare.
Because it doesn't matter who wins or loses, but that you threw a really fun party.
Make it Happen: Plan a fun Wimbledon party by assigning each guest a dish associated with a tennis star, and then let your imaginations run wild. Maybe it's a cool watermelon drink for John McEnroe, who always needs to cool off. Maybe it's grunting-good grilled nectarines for Maria Sharapova. Or a mellow yogurt and cucumber dip for those mild rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
Wimbledon Wisdom: The finals air July 3.
Invisible Pool Party
You dont have a sky blue in-ground pool? So what? You can bring the idea of the pool to your party.
Make it Happen: Encourage your guests to bring their old unused pool floats as decorations. Standard dress should be bathing suits and water wings.
"Pool" Food: Invite friends and family to bring their favorite meats and veggies for a turn on the fire. And remember: No "swimming" at least 30 minutes after eating. Try:
Vegetable Grill With Balsamic Red Wine Glaze
Clothing Swap Soiree
As summer fades to fall, it might be time to change up your wardrobe. But that doesnt mean you need to buy anything new. Instead, host a clothing swap and get new goods for free.
Make it Happen: Clothing swaps should ideally have around 10 guests. Encourage attendees to bring 10 to 15 gently worn but unwanted items to trade. Guests should wear comfy clothes (that are easy to change in and out of). You can either have people sort through the clothes themselves on a first-come, first-served basis -- or conduct the swap in a more orderly fashion, allowing attendees an equal chance to all items.
Items that no one wants to take may be donated to a Salvation Army or charity of your choosing.
"Summer of Love" Party
Sure, 1969 was deemed The Summer of Love the era of free love and good vibes, but that doesn't mean you can't bring it back this summer. Enjoy a cheeky "Summer of Love" backyard BBQ.
Make it Happen: Feel the love by inviting your closest friends and family to have a backyard picnic. Set the tone with some classic rock good vibes, like the ones found on this playlist, and dress up in groovy hippie duds.
Pull out some non-toxic finger paints and encourage guests to get messy for an extra groovy time.
Play With Your Food: A regular old fruit smoothie gets a 60s makeover as a Hippie Hippie Shake (just add peace and love.)
Photo Scavenger Hunt Party
Scavenger hunts are an exciting way to get to know where you live better. And photo scavenger hunts are an artistic take on the traditional scavenger hunt frenzy. Participants snap photos of their finds and share them with one another!
Make it Happen: Gather together your friends and neighbors as a way to get to know one another and your neighborhood better. This party can be as simple or complicated as you like, but is especially great in bike-friendly neighborhoods. Your scavenger hunt could have check-in points or simply require that participants photograph everything on their lists. Its up to you!
Feed the Hunters: After running around the neighborhood all day, guests will want some hearty fare.
Roasted Eggplant and Spinach Muffuletta Sandwich
Whole Wheat Pizza with Vegetables
Spicy Moroccan Carrot Dip with Whole Wheat Pita Chips
Beach Blanket Bingo Party
Channel your inner Gidget and throw a beach-themed summer soiree, replete with refreshing summer cocktails, beach balls and bikinis.
Make it Happen: Tell your guests to come in their best bikinis and board shorts, and apply plenty of sunscreen. Lounge in the backyard while listening to sweet Beach Boys tunes, or crank up the party by building a fake beach sandpit.
Let Them Eat Cake: Pig roasts are traditional beach party fare, but perhaps youd rather not partake? Instead, substitute a cute pig-shaped cake.
Christmas (or Hanukah) in July Party
Who wants to wait until December to celebrate the holidays?
Make it Happen: Have your guests wrap unused or unwanted items from their homes (nothing new!) for a summertime White Elephant swap. Pull out your Christmas decorations and your tree ornaments and decorate your backyard in holiday tones.