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A picnic can be a great way to spend an afternoon with friends, family or someone special. Whether you are looking a free way to enjoy some quality time with your kids or looking for that perfect second date to really impress her, plan a picnic and enjoy the afternoon. However, before you set off there are a few things you will need to pack and a few tips to prepare for anything.

Location Location Location

You can choose to have a picnic anywhere you want, unlike cleaning ovens. Under a shady tree on a soft patch of grass is always a good choice. A beach can be a great picnic spot as well but keep in mind that if you are sitting on the sand and the wind kicks in, you could end up with sprinkles of sand on your lunch. If you are walking a long distance to get to your picnic spot, make sure you have the shoes and the travel bag for it. You will also want to bring a nice soft blanket to relax on after you eat.

Keep in mind that there is always the chance that the weather may change its mind which is why it is a good idea to pack an umbrella and an extra change of clothes just in case. You might also want to bring along some sunscreen and hats in case the sun gets a little too much.

Picnic Basket Essentials

You do not need the wicker picnic basket to enjoy a picnic. Picnic baskets come in all different shapes, styles and materials these days. A cooler bag can make a great picnic basket as can a backpack. There are a number of companies that design picnic baskets that come with easy to carry straps, plates, knives and forks, wine glasses and even mini salt and pepper shakers.

If you do not have a picnic basket, be sure to pack extra napkins, wet wipes, knives, forks, cups, plates and salt and pepper if needed. It is also a good idea to bring a cloth and water so you can easily wipe down any items you want to bring home with you.

Choose what you want for your picnic. A platter of sandwiches with some cut up fruit on the side is always a great option. You may want to stop in at the deli and pick up an assortment of dips and tasty breads for your own antipasto platter. Bring some slices of cut up cheese, ham and other deli meats to top onto crackers. All of these meals are easy to prepare and easy to pack around in a basket.

Wine goes great with a romantic picnic but not if you are planning on driving. Limit your consumption to only one glass each. For the kiddies, bring some juice boxes along which are easy to throw out in the nearest garage bin and will not give them a sugar rush like soft drink.

Food aside, you might also want to bring some activities to enjoy after the meal, especially if you are bringing along the children. A Frisbee, football or soccer ball can ensure your kids burn off all that extra energy while you and your friends relax. You may also want to bring along a travel board game like scrabble or a pack of cards, both of which can offer a fun way to wind down the afternoon. And, finally, don’t forget your camera. It’s the simple things like community picnic planning that often make the best memories.

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