Lots of people are going back to school on Monday (which is kinda effed up, considering there is still 34 days of summer left until fall): Why not use this weekend to throw a final summer hurrah for your posse? Here’s how to do it on the quick and cheap:

When trying to figure out where to throw down, it’s tempting to go the impress-all-your-friends-with-the-fancy location route. Don’t. It’ll make your job way more complicated, cost you a bunch of money or take a lot of hard convincing to make the dream location happen.

So, to determine your location, simply think about the one place where you and all your friends hung out the most this summer. It can be somewhere as beautiful as a park or pool or as unglamorous as an unfinished garage. Bam! You’ve got your location. Not only will everyone will feel comfortable there, you won’t have to spend half of your night showing everyone where the bathroom is.  What’s more, if your place is at somebody else’s house or property, it’s pretty unlikely you’ll face resistance when you notify them of your party plans, since they’ve been letting you kick it there all summer.

While the easy nature of this get-down means you don’t have to transform the place into some sort of thematic wonderland, it is nice to create a slightly heightened ambiance that separates THIS hangout from the countless others of the summer. So trick out your comfortable confines by adding DIY LED Balloons, candles or strings of christmas tree lights to your room, pool area or park.

Grab some portable speakers, plug in your phone and play the best jams of the summer.

The key to getting people to cut loose? Make their surroundings extra comfy. Throw oversized pillows (aka chillows) and blankets on the ground so your friends can snuggle up and relax.

Just because foodie-ism is popular, doesn’t mean you have to sweat it out in the kitchen to kick out some yummy bites and drinks. If you love to cook, you probably have some signature dishes to serve to your friends. But if not, simply order a few pizzas and serve them on cake plates or grab a few frozen appetizers from Trader Joe’s  (like Parmesan Pastry Pups, Vegetable Bird’s Nests and Mini Tacos) and pop them in the oven.

For drinks, try making a batch of  Lavender Lemonade or tea-based libations that look like cocktails, like Iced Mint Tea with Muddled Ginger (pictured above).


 Have Fun!!

  1. Jessica says:

    What fun! I NEED those balloons!!!

    • erikaleastalder says:

      Jessica: They sell ’em at party stores, but they’re super easy to make–just pop LEDs into Balloons and fill. Detailed instructions can be found in the link.

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