Once summer is in full swing, folks are ready for potato salad, grilled chicken and outdoor activities. These summer events are always crowd pleasers:
- Fireworks show -- The big cities have their huge fireworks extravaganzas, but that doesn't mean you can't have a family get-together or block party with fireworks as the evening's entertainment. In July, fireworks are easy to find. Designate a couple of adults to conduct the show, and have a fire extinguisher in reserve just in case. Wait until dark and watch the fun. Kids love fireworks, and the impending aerial presentation will keep people around for any other activities you care to host.
- Grilling competition -- If you know a few good natured grillers who are willing to wield a spatula, tap them to be the entertainment at a grilling competition. Dueling grillers can be entertaining, and in the end, everyone leaves the field of battle with a full plate and a smile.
- Chili cook-off -- If the price of chicken and ribs is keeping you from going all out, try a chili cook-off. We aren't just talking red beans, either. White bean chili, black bean chili, vegetarian chili and turkey chili all have devoted followings. Grab a ladle, put on a checkered apron and start stirring. Chili can feed a crowd for pennies, and it's a fun food with lots of fans.
- Luau -- You may not be ready to roast a whole pig in a pit in your backyard, but adding some exotic fruit to a few tables and serving roasted pork can make for a delicious themed party. To decorate, employ lots of Tiki torches and have ukulele music playing in the background. Put grass skirts around the tables, too. You can find these accessories and more through party supply outlets.