The Great Outdoors

The great outdoors: How to throw the perfect outdoor party

There’s nothing quite like an outdoor party in Alberta. Especially one where there’s good food, good people and good entertainment. Whether it’s a wedding, a corporate retreat or Stampede hoedown, an outdoor party is always a great way to take in the good weather, and get to know great people.

Food for thought

When considering the menu for an outdoor affair, it’s good to include stationary items that can last safely in the heat. Raw oysters, seafood, and Carpaccio may be favourites of yours, but they can’t be out in the heat for too long. Wedding cakes can also be tricky. As much as we love warm weather, the icing certainly doesn’t! And while some outdoor locations are more restricted in terms of kitchen facilities, find a good Calgary caterer that can handle it. Like Devour.

Have a back up plan

In the warmer months, everyone loves to be outside. Guests can soak up some serious rays and vitamin D, and the mood is typically much more relaxed. Another bonus of throwing an event outside? There’s usually room for a lot more people.

The patio outside the Shawnessy Barn

As wonderful as an outdoor party can be, there are some things to consider, including Mother Nature. Regardless of how that May forecast looks, be prepared for showers, especially with Calgary’s unpredictable weather. That means having a place to keep the people and the food dry. July and August are generally “safe”, but if you’re from Calgary we don’t need to remind you that things can change and change quickly. A tent is a must for a back up plan. Also, a venue with fire pits or outdoor propane heaters is also a good idea as the temperature usually drops in the evenings.

Go for it

The ridge at the Southern Alberta Pioneer Lodge is a spectacular ceremony spot.

Our summers never seem long enough, so if you’re planning a party and want a relaxed event, an outdoor celebration is always a good way to go. It’s a good idea to work with an event planner or caterer in Calgary who can help you plan the details and be prepared in the case of a downpour (or god forbid something worse.) Take advantage of the weather and come up with a fun theme too. And think about how to keep your guests comfortable with fans, heaters, bug spray, sunscreen and plenty of frosty drinks. Who knows, with good weather, great moments and rave reviews from guests, you just may never want to host indoors again.