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Host a Fourth of July party to remember

Barbecue party items in APHW colors lay over a tan background; at the bottom is a white "flying A" over a teal semicircle next to "Host a Fourth of July Party to Remember" in white, all caps block lettering

Independence Day is a few days away – and you may be stumped on how to keep this year’s celebration fresh and exciting. But we’re here to help! We’re bringing you a wealth of ways to spice up your festivities, draw in a crowd, and help make this 4th of July your coolest one yet.

Use unexpected Independence Day décor

How many red, white, and blue items do you see around your house? From flowers, to decorative bowls, to throw pillows, simplify your event décor by complementing your American flags and streamers with the patriotic items you already have around your home.

The best décor is equal parts functional and beautiful, so focus on party supplies that are easily reused around the home or repurposed for the next celebration.

Put a new twist on your Independence Day food and drink

Fourth of July party food can be pretty routine, but a few tweaks can go a long way. Try these Independence Day menu ideas for a unique, yet approachable spread.

Find your new favorite fish

Mix up the protein options this year by adding a fish option (or two) to your Independence Day menu. You could go with a classic, like salmon, or try another variety, like cod or catfish.

Full-flavor fusion

America is a melting pot; why not merge American classics with culinary ideas from your favorite cultures for a bit of barbecue fusion? From a Tex-Mex burger to marrying Korean and American barbecue styles and flavors, the possibilities are endless!

Try an oven-free dessert

Avoid extra trips between the party space and the oven – plan ahead by making an easy crowd pleaser, like puppy chow/muddy buddies, or no-churn vegan ice cream ahead of time, or shave loads of time off dessert preparation by whipping up creamsicle milkshakes on the spot!

Have guests mix and match flavors at a lemonade bar

Add some pizzazz to your Fourth of July beverages by offering visitors a lemonade bar. Yummy options like the ones below will pack a flavorful punch and please the kids – and kids at heart!

  • Iced tea (Sweet and unsweet)
  • Mint
  • Juice and smoothie ice cubes
  • Berries/chopped fruit
  • Pop/soda
  • Cucumber slices

Break out your best indoor and outdoor activities

Once everyone has finished chowing down on your top-notch barbecue, they’ll need something to do. Pull out your best party games (like the ones listed below) and get everyone in on the fun!

Lawn games

If you’ve got the space, set up lawn games like ones below so your guests won’t have to wonder what to do with their hands.

  • Cornhole
  • Bocce
  • Ladder ball

Indoor pastimes

Have activities like the ones below ready to go in case extreme heat or inclement weather rains on your parade.

  • Table games
  • App-based games
  • Activity books/adult coloring station (why not feel like a kid again?)

Keep things comfortable

If your guests will be staying to watch the fireworks, make sure you’re prepared for when the grilling is over and the lawn games are done. With a basket or two of the following items on hand, you won’t have to run upstairs or inside to grab something that meets a guest’s needs.

  • Blankets
  • Bug Spray
  • Sunscreen
  • Extra towels (if there will be water activities)
  • Extra chairs (or advise guests to BYOC)

Bonus: Practice good holiday fire safety

Summer is bonfire season – give your guests an easy path to the s’mores station. Finish your landscaping ahead of time and ensure your fire pit has all the necessary permits and repairs squared away long before that first knock on the door.

To firework or not to firework?

If you’ll be watching fireworks this year, make sure everyone in your party is comfortable with the ramparts gallantly streaming, and that the necessary accommodations are made. If you’ll be skipping fireworks this year, consider glow sticks, bubbles, or other sensory-friendly alternatives.

With a little help from this list, you can make this year’s Fourth of July festivities one for the books! How are you celebrating this year? Visit us on FacebookLinkedInTwitter or Instagram to let us know!