Multigenerational BBQ Guide
Ahh, it’s that time of the year again!
We’ve made it through the never ending, bone-chilling winter, and the rainy, life-giving spring. Finally, it is our time to enjoy some sunshine and grilling during Barbecue Season, more formally known as summer.
So you’re having the family over for a fun-filled backyard barbecue evening, with endless stomach-filling appetizers, Dad’s grilled specialties, chilled drinks, and strawberry shortcake.
You have your separate coolers full of ice-cold drinks, set on the deck to quench your thirst on this 80 degree evening. One for the kids’ juice boxes and Gatorades, and another with more age appropriate drinks. (Always drink responsibly!)
The dinner menu is set. Grandma is bringing her famous potato salad, Aunt Chris is bringing the fruit and veggie platters, Dad is outside becoming one with the burgers and brats, and your sister is in charge of the strawberry shortcake fixings.
Now, the real question is: How do we keep everyone, from the ages of 3 to 80 years old, comfortable and entertained for the evening?
Let’s begin with the kids.
The piñata. Have you ever met a kid who doesn’t like candy? I can’t say that I have. While this may require some supervision, a competitive, yet laughter inducing time is guaranteed.
Bean bag toss. A DIY bean bag toss could simply include two buckets and a few tennis balls.
Free to roam. As long as the kids have a section of backyard where they can strike up a game of freeze tag, hide and seek, or even the traditional potato sack race, you are set. Winner gets an extra handful of candy!
Next up, are the teens and 20-somethings.
Hula hoops. An inexpensive, yet fun way to test your hooping skills. See who can pull off some crazy hoop tricks or who can hoop the longest without the hoop dropping to the grass.
Frisbee. A great way to socialize is with a low-key or intense game of Frisbee if they choose.
Next, Moms and Dads.
It’s probably been yet another busy week with the 9-5 schedule, getting everyone out the door on time, and chauffeuring kids around to soccer and baseball practices. Don’t stress too much about preparing the food for tonight. Sit down. Relax. Breathe. Share some good laughs. Enjoy a cool drink and each other’s company. If you are up for it, join in on the hula hoop contest or the bean bag toss.
Most importantly: the VIP’s.
After all, they are the ones who began the family tradition of the backyard barbecue. Hence, they deserve VIP chairs in the VIP section of the backyard. For extra special treatment provide them with VIP parking spots in your driveway, which should be close to the entrances of your home or yard.
When it comes to the location of the backyard, the ground should be flat, as to minimize any mishaps. Make sure this part of the yard is central and, almost like a spotlight on a stage, so that our VIP guests don’t miss a thing. If you have enough space for a circle of chairs on your deck or patio, then that’s even better. Flat surfaces are our friends!
Not only could a spontaneous game of musical chairs arise, but the circle of chairs is perfect for storytelling. With storytelling comes the need for a table with lots of snacks and appetizers. Sit back, relax, and chow on some pigs in a blanket while Grandma retells her story of the time Uncle Fred was chased out of his tent by a black bear in the Appalachian Mountains.
An activity for all.
While all of these backyard activities are great and age-appropriate, the best way to end a fun day spent with your loved ones is gathering around a cozy bonfire underneath the stars. The bonfire is the ultimate way to bring the family together, enjoy each other’s stories, and perfect your marshmallow roasting abilities!