Celebrate summer’s most patriotic holiday by throwing an outdoor event with friends and family!
Did you know there are best practices for throwing a pool party during the summer? From how to keep refreshments cool and COVID safety tips for parties, this article is full of advice on how you can throw the bash of the summer.
Fourth of July Pool Party Tips: Essential Ingredients
1. Essential Items
When planning your pool party, have these items on-hand to make before, during and after your party a breeze:
- First Aid kit
- Extra towels
- Bug repellent
- Hand sanitizer
- Shade structure
- Backyard lighting
2. Shatterproof Dishware
When it comes to throwing a pool party, shatterproof dishware is essential. After all, it only takes one person to accidentally drop a glass or plate and those glass shards can end up in your pool. Glass shards pose a risk to swimmers, toys and pool equipment.
A great tip for gathering is to serve disposable dishware like plastic or paper plates, bowls, cups, and utensils. Today you can find disposable dinnerware in every color and pattern at your local dollar store or online, so have fun picking out plates, napkins and cutlery that match your Fourth of July theme.
3. Beating the Heat
While it may be tempting to serve something fresh and light like tuna salad or something decadent like crab dip for your Fourth of July pool party, it may not be the safest option. Food items that are left out in the heat pose a danger to guests. Instead, plan on food items that will be ok in the sun, like fruit cups, cut-up vegetables, chips and hummus.
If you have your heart set on a recipe that needs to be kept cool, there are ways to accomplish this. Ideally, you have an outdoor kitchen with a refrigerator, but if you don’t, you can use an inflatable food serving bar! These food bars can be placed on top of a picnic table, on the ground, or inside a gazebo. You can use these food bars to hold drinks, your special star-shaped hand pies (wrapped individually, of course!), sandwiches or anything else you want to keep cool. Fill the container-like food bar with ice, and voila! Your food will stay cool throughout the party. Just don’t forget to add ice as the day goes on.
When it comes to beating the heat, don’t forget a selection of refreshing drinks. Water is a must, but if you want to get provide another option, aqua frescas will wow your guests!
4. Outdoor Kitchens
If you have an outdoor kitchen you have more options for pool party foods and drinks. These amazing units can come with grills, refrigerators, storage drawers, meal-prep counters and more. That means you can serve whatever you’d like at your Fourth of July pool party because you can easily store it after.
Another benefit of an outdoor kitchen? Instead of going back and forth between your home and the pool, you can simply open the outdoor fridge and pull out a cool drink or snack. And all those delicious Fourth of July desserts you plan to serve? You can make them in your outdoor kitchen – and have plenty of space to store them — all while entertaining guests!
Not only will cooking outside make things easier, but it will open up the scope of Fourth of July food recipes that you can cook.
5. Make it Mini
Instead of opting for a huge bowl of dip for guests to share, consider creating single-sized mini portions for them. For instance, instead of putting together a giant charcuterie board filled with meat, cheese and vegetables, you can make single serving “jar-cuterie” bites! Another example is cake. Rather than serving your firecracker cake whole, make individual cake balls or pre-cut into single-serve slices covered in wrap.
6. Refresh Your Guests
Fourth of July pool party games are a great way to keep guests entertained and make your event unforgettable. Since this holiday takes place during one of the hottest months of summer, water games are top choices. Ideas include water balloon fights, water gun contests and pool noodle battles. For adults that don’t want to partake in the silliness, offer mini spray bottles filled with cold water to spritz throughout the event to stay cool.
If you prefer a less-active party, plan for other ways to entertain your guests. Set up an outdoor movie and have everyone socially distance to watch their favorite film together. Or, ask kids to plan a play or skit that entertains the entire group!
7. Fourth of July Décor, Floats and Favors
Showcase your patriotic spirit by decorating with red, white and blue. If you really want to make your backyard pop, use cardboard stencils and water-based spray paint to fill your lawn with red, white, and blue stars! Spread Fourth of July cheer with patriotic pool floats like shapes of eagles, flags, stars and stripes and more. Show off your party-planning-prowess by gifting guests with patriotic favors such as sparklers, hand fans, bottles of bubbles with star-shaped wands or red, white and blue candy.
8. Include Everyone
When thinking about Fourth of July pool party ideas, it’s good to remember that you will likely have guests of all ages. Also, not everyone has the same idea of fun. One person may love to swim or get soaked in a water gun fight, while some prefer hanging out on a comfortable chair and drinking lemonade. Make sure you plan for every guest that may be in attendance.
Designate areas for those who want to be a part of the fun but in a more relaxed setting. For example, set up an area with comfortable chairs and towels away from the games for just hanging out. Will teens attend your party? Create a fun lounge-like atmosphere filled with funky pillows and textiles. If small children will attend your pool party, include a craft table so that they can make glitter flags, Statue of Liberty hats or write letters to the troops.
9. Get Your Virtual On
Not everyone is ready to be around a group of people, and if that sounds like you and your friends, it’s possible to plan a virtual swimming party instead of an in-person one. Here are some ideas for throwing an unforgettable virtual Fourth of July pool party.
- Fashion Show. Have your friends agree to all wear their best Fourth of July swimsuits. Not comfortable wearing swimsuits? Have everyone put on fun Fourth of July outfits!
- Patriotic Food Spread. Next, have everyone send a picture of their Fourth of July-themed holiday food and drinks. Everyone gets to vote on which one looks the most delectable. You can even offer different categories for most creative, etc.! Provide a small gift card for the winner.
- Choreography Contest. Ask virtual event attendees to come up with a dance set to a patriotic song. Host a dance contest and see who has the best red white and blue moves!
Fourth of July Pool Party Tips
Use these tips to host an incredible Fourth of July pool party. Enjoy this holiday with friends and family and let us know what you think of these suggestions!