As we gear up for pool party season, you’re probably thinking of how to make your first one of the season really stand out. Whether you invite the entire neighborhood or just close friends and family, there are ways to make your party the one everybody is talking about.
Utilize a Theme
Implementing a theme for your party can make all the other necessary choices a breeze. Want to go patriotic for Memorial Day? The obvious color scheme for the day is red, white and blue. Serve traditional summer American fare – watermelon, burgers. But traditional doesn’t rule out other interesting twists–The Hawaiian luau is a common yet always fun and easy choice.
If you’re feeling adventurous, try a more unique theme. Look at current events and pop culture as a starting point of reference–for example, upcoming music festivals, championship games or sporting events, or an upcoming Summer blockbuster.
Use Creative Invitations
Anyone can make a Facebook event or send out an Evite. For your first shindig of the season, put a little more effort into your invitations. The invitation is a good opportunity to really get your guests excited about the party, and to set the tone. Besides, in this day of texting and email, it’s nice to receive snail mail once in a while that isn’t bills!
The invitation is an easy place to incorporate the party’s theme. Also, if you’re feeling crafty, take your invitation a step further and attach a magnet backing so guests can stick the invitation on their refrigerator. They definitely won’t forget about the party!
Easy Finger Foods
Serve snacks and foods that are easy to eat, and that preferably do not require any utensils. This is where the fun of choosing a theme can really come into play. If you’re planning around Cinco de Mayo, have a nacho or taco bar – your guests will be able to customize their food, and will require no forks or knives! Also keep in mind the non-meat eaters; try a simple fish or shrimp ceviche, spicy shrimp cocktail, and chips and guacamole. Kebabs of any kind – fruit, chicken, veggies – are another great, no-fuss item that can be worked into any theme.
It’s in the Details
The trick to a stellar pool party is to seamlessly incorporate all of your elements, and to anticipate your guests’ needs. Have plenty of ice water, towels, sunscreen and shade easily accessible. If you’re going to be swimming into the evening hours, invest in some affordable pool lighting to make sure the party is a hit! And of course, make sure your above-ground pool is in pristine condition–a cinch if you have Kayak’s advanced filtration system–by balancing your chemicals, and perhaps shocking your pool (no later than the morning of, depending on when guests are arriving). Don’t forget to check out our stress-free guide to Summer pool parties for even more ideas!