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Tuesday, July 03, 2012
5 Tips for Having the Best Summer BBQ

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By Heather Andrews

When the weather gets warmer, there's nothing better than rounding up your friends and family for a BBQ. We all have wonderful summer memories of relaxing in a friend or neighbor's backyard with a cold drink and a burger hot off the grill. That means that your next outdoor gathering has a lot of expectations to live up to. Here are 5 ways to ensure your next BBQ is a success:

1) Plan ahead
A rule of thumb for every party is when the host is having a good time, your guests will be having a good time as well. No one likes seeing their host frantically preparing food instead of enjoying the party. Avoid this by planning ahead. You can make desserts and side dishes for your BBQ a day ahead of time. Better yet, ask your guests to bring something to the party. This will take some coordination so you won't end up with five kinds of potato salad, but you'll have a more eclectic food selection without doing all of the work yourself. Also, remember to marinade your meat ahead of time. The results will be worth it!

2) Buy fresh
While frozen meat patties are convenient to stash in your freezer, they have no place making an appearance at your BBQ. Fresh meat just tastes better. You may even be able to save money if you ask your butcher for deals or specials.

3) Keep the drinks cold
There's nothing better than a cold drink on a hot day. Make sure you have enough cooler space and ice for your BBQ's beverages. You may want to enlist some of your guests to bring extra coolers if you don't have enough. It's a good idea to devote one cooler entirely to ice for cooler refills to prevent your extra ice from melting. If you plan on drinking wine at your party, chill your wine with wine cooler.

4) Set up games for young and old
While plenty of food and drinks are enough for some people to have fun, it's always good to have games to keep your guests entertained. Luckily, there is a wide selection of fun outdoor games to choose from for your BBQ. Pick up a few hoola hoops from the dollar store if there will be children present. Games like cornhole and bocci ball are perfect for the outdoors and can be enjoyed by all ages. For maximum enjoyment, add an inflatable bounce house to your backyard.

5) Keep the bugs at bay
Show your guests how much you care by investing in some outdoor pest control to save them from mosquito bites. There are plenty of inexpensive options that will leave your guests bite-free. Bug spray is the go-to insect repellent, but we all hate the smell and the greasy film it leaves on our skin. A fun way to keep the mosquitoes off is to wear a mosquito shield band. You could keep them on hand to offer your guests as an alternative to that dreaded spray repellent. You could also try using a bite shield which can deter bugs up to 15 feet with just an unobtrusive scented spray or the Guardian Mosquito trap to cover an area as large as one Acre. There are lots of options to control mosquitos at your party.

Your guests and neighbors will love your mosquito-free yard so much, your biggest problem could be getting them to leave!A summer BBQ is the time to relax and enjoy family, friends, and the outdoors. These tips will help make your next BBQ a success and one your guests will look forward to repeating every summer.

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