Throw the Ultimate Summer Cookout

There’s a lot more to a great outdoor party than just the burgers—check out everything from the drinks we love to the tunes that groove.

people enjoying asado party at backyard
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Among the many joys of summer, one of the best is having friends and their families over to eat, drink, and relax in your backyard. While what you’re throwing on the grill matters, the overall barefoot, school's out vibe of summer is really what sets your party apart. And a fun cookout doesn’t require a ton of prep time or money, but rather just a bit of creativity and plenty of refreshments like Tropicana Premium Drinks. From playlists to festive drinks, these are the al fresco party essentials that guarantee that everyone—including you—has a fantastic time.

Serve Refreshing Drinks


Of course, you can’t go wrong with a bucket of beer at a barbecue, but to really serve something memorable, while helping your guests beat the heat, create a DIY beverage bar.

Constructing your own station is simple: Start by throwing a fun tablecloth over a large table. Decant delicious mixers like Tropicana’s Peachy Pineapple Paradise, Caribbean Sunset, and Piña Colada, and fizzy water into drink dispensers. Set out bowls with summery mix-ins like fresh pineapple, strawberries, and mint, along with colorful biodegradable straws and cups. If you’ve got some extra prep time the day before, freeze the fruit into cubes for a special touch that’ll keep their drinks from diluting fast.

Create a Summery Playlist

friends jumping into swimming pool at pool party
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While an ideal playlist is certainly subjective, we have a few tips to help ensure that what you pick keeps everyone grooving all evening long. Cue up a rotation of songs that always put you in a good mood. As the host, you set the vibe of the party and if the soundtrack makes you smile, then odds are, your guests will feel the same. Prefer to go the streaming radio route? Just be sure to go to your settings and block explicit tunes, so even the little ones in your yard can enjoy whatever comes on. Rather not DJ? Let guests take turns connecting their phones to your bluetooth-enabled portable speaker. And don't forget to charge it!

Stick to Easy Snacks

a summer barbecue in the park
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Focus on store-bought snacks that are delicious, utensil-free, and most importantly, allow you to spend as little time in the kitchen as possible. Some of our favorite timesaving go-tos include grocery store cheese and charcuterie boards; tortilla chips with bowls of guacamole, salsa, and bean dip; and veggie skewers.

Let the Games Begin

two adult senior female friends having fun together outdoors
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An excellent way to get guests to circulate and have fun bonding is to set up lawn game stations. You can string a volleyball net in one corner, and get a rousing game of cornhole going in another. And if you’re entertaining small tykes, you can never underestimate the power of inexpensive bubbles. (Just keep them away from the food stations.)

Set a Magical Mood

buntings hanging over food served on decorated picnic table at back yard
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A brightly patterned tablecloth, along with matching disposable plates, cups, and cutlery, add a cheerful vibe. When the sun finally dims, it’s worth breaking out a set of outdoor globe lights. Not only do they add a festive ambiance but they light up the proceedings so guests can enjoy themselves long after the sun sets.

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