So you’ve decided to host a party on this hotly anticipated national day off. But why does that mean should you be stuck doing all the hard work and heavy lifting? Stay relaxed while entertaining this Labor Day with seven easy party ideas.
1. Consider an all-white dress code.
Give your guests the opportunity to have one last hurrah with their summer wardrobes as a nod to the (outmoded) sartorial ban on white threads. (As a bonus: this theme is also reminiscent of a certain hip-hop mogul’s legendary soirees.) Encourage partygoers to wear their whitest dresses, pants, and sandals.
2. Skip traditional invites.
Don’t waste time and money printing invitations. Instead, keep it casual with a simple mass email. It may not have the same pomp and circumstance as a printed invite, but it gets the job done, and sets a casual tone for the big event itself.
3. Choose summer send-off fare.
It isn’t technically the end of summer, but Labor Day always feels like a bittersweet farewell. Send it off with one last seasonal spread—think hot dogs right off the grill, sliced watermelon, and ice-cold lemonade.
4. Keep your cool.
Help guests beat the lingering heat by providing handmade fold-up fans in a basket by the patio door. If you’re feeling really brave, set up an ice bucket full of chilled water balloons. (Oh, and ice pops are a must.)
5. Play only lazy sports.
No need to overexert yourselves. Adjust your tee-ball match with a walking-only rule or consider a rousing round of cornhole instead. Go another step further by giving classic board games a backyard spin—like “giant” Jenga® using two-inch-by-four-inch blocks of wood, or sidewalk chalk tic-tac-toe.
6. Set up a BYOBB.
If you don’t want to resort to a potluck gathering but still want guests to take an active role in the party’s meal, organize a Bring Your Own Burger Bar. You provide the meat and buns, and have attendees come with their favorite sauces and toppings (sautéed mushrooms, grilled hot peppers, blue cheese spread, and sour pickle slices—the more flavorful, the better). It’s a great way to serve a classic crowd-pleaser in an innovative way that guests won’t soon forget.
7. Give out practical “back-to-work” goodie bags.
Instead of a more traditional party favor, opt to give everyone a tasty to-go bag that’s essentially a packed lunch (of leftovers, perhaps?) for guests to take with them to work the next day. Consider throwing in a stress ball, while you’re at it.
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