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Deck the Halls: Turning Your Back Porch Into A Holiday Hangout

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Fri, Dec 18, 2015

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"The pool may be closed for the winter but you can still hangout under a gazebo"

In many areas around the country, the temperature is dropping and snow is starting to fall. Do you find yourself looking out at your back deck, picturing the fun times you'll have next spring and summer? Well, there's no need to wait! You can enjoy your deck and backyard any time of the year. Take a look at some ideas for throwing a backyard party in the wintertime.

A Backyard Barbecue in Winter

Invite your friends over and fire up your backyard grill for a party in December. Enjoying grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, and other hot dishes is an excellent way to forget about the chilly temperatures. Make your winter cookout unique by offering things like homemade mustard for hot dogs, hot slaw, and even hot fudge sundaes for dessert. The distinct aroma of charcoal in the air is sure to remind your guests that spring is coming soon! If it's a bit too blustery to dine al fresco, take your treats into the garage for a bit of shelter: A few chairs and some twinkle lights can make a functional space festive!

Celebrating Around a Fire Pit

A party around a fire pit is the perfect way to keep warm while celebrating the season with friends. I love to watch the flames crackling in a fire pit: Don't you? If you don't have a built-in fire pit, you can purchase a portable one for the occasion. Dust the snow off of your patio chairs and place them around the fire pit so your guests can enjoy the warmth. Instead of the usual marshmallows on a stick, try creating marshmallow sandwiches. If you want to go with a traditional favorite, buy some graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows to make s'mores. The aroma of the roasting marshmallows will make you wonder why you waited so long to throw a winter party on the deck.

A Gingerbread House Party

If you love to make a gingerbread house every year, why not make it a party? Choose a sunny day that's not too cold to dust the snow off of the patio furniture. You can either provide your guests with the ingredients for a gingerbread house or purchase a few kits at a craft store. Get out your CD player and put on some cheerful music with a winter theme. Your guests will laugh and talk as they construct a gingerbread house they can take home after the party. If you want to go with a non-traditional project, try making a gingerbread shed!

A Party with the Stars

Another cold-weather party idea is to invite guests over after dark to sit on the deck and gaze up at the stars. Find as many spare blankets as you can to drape over your guests to keep them cozy. Ask your guests to bring their binoculars along with them so they can get the full effect of the star show. Serve warm chocolate chip cookies and hot chocolate to your friends while they search for the Big and Little dippers. I'll admit that I love to sip a steaming mug of hot chocolate while looking up at the stars on a winter's night. Of course, it must have mini-marshmallows!

These are just a few ideas for your next cold-weather party. Remember, never let a little snow get in the way of celebrating with friends! Thanks for reading. - Alan

Topics: Backyard gazebo hangout

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