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Party on the Patio

Throwing a successful outdoor get-together doesn’t really take as much effort as you might think. After all, the success of any party is measured by how much fun your guests have. So start by inviting the right people and you’re halfway there. Good friends can have fun in almost any situation. Once you’ve got the guest list set, you’ll want to decide what kind of party you’re going to host. Is it a sit-down dinner for a small group? Cocktails by the pool? Backyard BBQ? Different gatherings may require different types of outdoor furnishings and methods for keeping drinks cold.

Once you’ve set the tone of your gathering, one thing is almost always certain … your guests will expect drinks. Keep a bar set handy for mixing up delicious cocktails or have beverage dispensers at the ready for a self-serve experience. Since the party’s outside, consider plastic or metal drinkware to avoid breaks.

If good drinks and good company don’t seem to be enough to break the ice at your party, consider setting up some lawn games. Games like croquet or bocce are perfect for making people relaxed and ready to mingle.

- Lisa, hayneedle.com editor

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