Outdoor entertaining is one of life’s greatest pleasures. Summer just seems to beg us to slow down and enjoy life. What better way to take pleasure in friends and family than to invite them over for a casual afternoon of warm hospitality and great food? Get your grill on and follow these easy tips to make your outdoor summer entertaining a success!

1. Spruce up your outdoor space; cut the grass, sweep the patio, wipe down the furniture.
2. Check the weather and plan accordingly. Invite your guests by phone or e-vite about 1-2 weeks before your gathering.
3. Keep your guests comfortable by providing shade with a market umbrella, a shade structure or set your table up under a shady tree. 
4. Set up 2 trash cans, one for recyclables.
5. Use containers with plenty of ice to keep drinks in. A cooler, aluminum tub, child’s red wagon can suffice. Arrange two or three in different locations in the yard so there is more than one place for guests to get beverages.
6. Set up the barbecue grill in a safe place. Put barbecue utensils and serving platters by the barbecue. Do not serve cooked meat on the same platter used for raw meat.
7. Have plenty of folding chairs, patio furniture, benches, and if you have planters that would be suitable for sitting, top them with colorful pillows for comfortable, extra seating.

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