Last night we went to the second annual outdoor movie night at our church. Like last year, it was an enjoyable way to spend a warm summer night with other church community members. It reminded me of going to drive-in movies when I was a child, but it's even better. The kids can move around more freely when they're restless, and you can look up at the stars on a clear night. Not only is this a great summertime event for a church, but it would be fun for a neighborhood block party, or other community organizations. You can even host one at home for family and friends if you have a large enough yard. Here's how to plan your own outdoor movie night:
Drive-in movies have become more difficult to find in recent years, and yet nostalgia remains for watching movies outside in the summertime. Luckily, today's technology makes it easier than ever to create your own outdoor movie party. This type of party is perfect for a personal family and friends event, or a neighborhood get together, and it's simpler to arrange than you might think.
Setting the Stage
Since this outdoor movie party will be held outside, and the lights will be low, decorations are almost unnecessary. However, you will have to pull out your technical skills, or enlist the help of a home theater buff to prepare for this party. You'll need:
- Create your own outdoor movie screen by using an inexpensive, king-size , flat, white bedsheet. Tack the top and bottom onto thin strips of wood. Drill holes in the top of the wood so that you can hang it from the side of a house, garage, or any other building large enough for the screen.
A Sound and Projection System
- You'll need a home theater-in-a-box system including speakers and DVD player that is powerful enough to broadcast outside. You'll also need a video projector to connect to the DVD player to project the movie. Use 6-foot wooden stakes to mount your speakers around your seating area. Or, for those of you with a little extra cash to spend, look into the growing outdoor cinema businesses that sell inflatable movie screens, projectors, and speakers all in one durable and easy-to-use package. For starters, check out Open Air Cinema's products at www.openaircinema.us.
- Ask all your guests to bring lawn chairs unless you have enough to accomodate everyone. Families with young children might want to bring large blankets in case the kids become sleepy.
- Select a movie that is suitable for all age members at your party. Sometimes it's fun to go with a classic that no one has seen in years. Or choose a classic sci-fi B movie to recreate that nostalgic drive-in experience.
- Fight off the nightly mosquito attack. Offer spray-on insect repellant to your guests. Place citronella candles in a wide enough swathe around the viewing area to chase away the bugs.
Food and Snacks
- Popcorn, and lots of it. Serve the popcorn in movie theater style boxes that can easily be found at party stores.
- Movie theater size boxes of candy.
Source: "Donna's Entertaining Blog". Read full article at: http://entertaining.about.com/b/2007/07/27/an-outdoor-movie-night-party.htm
- Hot dogs served in red plastic baskets.