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5 Things You Need for the Perfect Outdoor Movie Party

Young people enjoying an outdoor movie night

By this point in the summer, outdoor parties should be in full swing. Unfortunately, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has everyone rethinking these types of gatherings. But just because you may not be able to throw a traditional summer bash doesn’t mean you have to spend the rest of the season on the couch.

It’s still possible to assemble an outdoorsy crowd in the backyard as long as you do it the right way. Just make sure you adhere to social distancing guidelines, implement all coronavirus precautions, and, of course, stock up on the popcorn and drinks. Before you know it, the backyard movie night you envisioned all year long will come to life!

On the day of the party, your only concern should be about what flick to watch. That’s why it’s important to gather the following essentials now.

A video source

There isn’t a movie party without a move, and there can’t be a video without a video source. Keep in mind that a video source can be as simple as a DVD player or laptop. If you’d prefer the sharpest picture possible on a big screen, consider a Blu-ray disc player.

Looking for a way to stream the video wirelessly? The two best options would be a Roku box or an Apple TV. 

Mini projector

This is a small, pocket-sized projector that works just like any standard projector. A mini projector serves as the link between your video source and the screen. You can easily connect a mini projector to a video source via an HDMI port.

Display screen

Any flat surface will do, including the side of your garage provided it’s painted white. Other display options include a white sheet hung from a clothing line, a TV screen, or a TV wall. The bigger the screen, the better the viewing experience for your guests!

Powered PA speakers

Powered (or active) speakers come with built-in speakers for better performance. The speaker and amplifier being in the same cabinet also make it easier for you to set up a powerful sounding system without too much heavy lifting.

Will there be live performances during the party? Then you’ll likely need a straightforward setup with a single keyboard, but with the best audio signal quality. You can also improve the signal quality and reduce noise by connecting a midi keyboard to the PA system. 

LED outdoor hanging lanterns

The last thing you want is for light distractions to put a damper on this evening. That said, guests should still be able to navigate through your backyard once the movie starts. This is where LED hanging lanterns come into play.

These whimsical lights can be used to mark the path to refill stands, bathrooms, and anywhere else that guests will want to visit. Best of all, they provide just the right amount of light. What’s more, these lights are battery-powered so they won’t inflate your next energy bill.

Bonus tips

Have plenty of extension cords

Make sure you have enough extension cords for the lighting, projector, screen, and video source. You’ll feel at ease knowing that there are extra cords on hand in case you need them.

Upgrade seating options for guests

Reading to ditch your old outdoor seating for something more comfortable and stylish? Ideally, your outdoor furniture should be an extension of your living room. One other thing worth mentioning: there should be enough pillows and blankets for everyone.

Select the right movie

Whether you’re planning an all-night movie marathon or just one film, you may want to have guests choose their favorite(s). Consider providing guests the choices several days in advance and then revealing the winner on the day of the party. 

Load up on snacks

What movie night is complete without candy, popcorn, and other snacks? You can create the theater experience at home — and without the long concession lines and sticky counters. Remember to have healthy snacks available for guests as well.

Play it safe

Guest safety should be your top priority during this party. Let those in attendance know that you have ample hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes for the occasion. Lastly, arrange the seating area in a manner that respects social distancing.

Have fun!

It’s difficult to spend time with friends and family at the moment. An outdoor movie party allows you to catch up with the people you love while still being cautious.

Why wait until theaters reopen to enjoy yourself? Switch things up by hosting your own movie party in the fresh air, with the stars shining overhead, and with guests maintaining their distance.

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