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Nothing says summer quite like a good ol fashion cookout. Summer barbeques or cookouts are great for all occasions in the summer, from birthday parties to pool parties, from Fourth of July celebrations to Labor Day long weekends. Make a shopping list and invite some friends over to enjoy the heat of the sun and the heat of the grill.

Spice up Dinner with a Cookout

Summer cookouts are great for any situation. Even boring old Saturday night dinners can be spiced up by cooking your steaks outside on the barbeque and setting up the dinner table outside rather than inside. If you are looking for a good dinner party idea, why not eat al fresco with the grill as your piece de resistance?

If you are hosting a summer cookout then you will need to do a little bit of planning, but nothing along the lines of switching internet companies. One of the best things about barbeques is the laid back nature of them. You don’t need to break out the expensive china or worry about serving the right kinds of wine to complement dinner. Sausage, steak, chicken all taste great washed down in a nice cold beer. Furthermore, your guests will be perfectly happy using plastic or paper cutlery and plates for the occasion.

If you are planning a theme summer cookout, get creative with the decoration by looking for a plastic tablecloth and plastic wear in the colors of your party. Look for pirate themed plates and cups for your little boy’s fifth birthday or red, white and blue balloons for a Fourth of July celebration. You may even want to theme the food to match the decorations.

Summer Cookout Preparation

Make a shopping list to ensure that you have everything you need in terms of plastic wear. Give your yard a mow and set out additional camping chairs so that your guests all have a place to sit. Make sure you have salad and condiments such as onions, tomato, lettuce, ketchup, mustard, cheese and salt and pepper on the table so that guests can dress their burger and hot dog buns as they see fit.

Make sure you have more than enough food for the people on your guest list. Leftovers are better than everyone leaving still hungry. In addition to meat, sausages and other items for the barbeques, good side dishes include potato salad, Greek salad, vegetable kabobs, prawn cocktails, mini quiche and veggies and dips as well as an assortment of breads and dips. Chips, salsa and dips will also keep your guests happy while the food is being cooked.

Food aside, you will also want to stock some soft drink and juice for your guests. Use a portable cooler filled with ice to keep the drinks cold and easily accessible. The more stuff you keep outside, the less time people spend walking inside and outside of your home. For adult guests beer is always an excellent addition to the traditional summer cookout as long as there is always a designated driver.

In addition to food and drink, you may also want to stock up on some sunscreen as well as bugs spray just in case mosquitoes and other insects decide to come to the party as well. Many guests will forget these essential summer items before they arrive at your home. If you live in a complex and are using a common area to throw your barbeque, let your neighbors and landlord know ahead of time so that they are not thrown off by several strangers in the complex. All of these tips will help to ensure that your summer cookout is a seasonal sensation.

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