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Young friends dining together outside and having red wine



The holiday season is in full swing, and we can’t stop thinking about all of the ways to bring a little joy to each and every day, in a year that seems anything but joyful. While the holidays might be a little different this year, it doesn’t mean you can’t come up with creative ways to entertain in a safe, COVID-friendly manner. Read on for our top tips for hosting a successful outdoor holiday dinner in 2020.

Create Cozy Feels Outside

Just because you’re dining outside, doesn’t mean you can’t give it the same cozy feels you have to offer inside. Create a special ambiance with some outdoor string lights, large candles as centerpieces, and a linen tablecloth. If you’re able to, use your normal dinnerware or invest in some high quality disposables. It will make your evening feel a little more special than just a backyard picnic.

Smart Menu Planning

Plan your menu ahead of time, with intentional thought behind it. Anything that needs to be enjoyed while piping hot, like soup, is likely not a good idea when served outside, in colder temperatures. Swap it for a warm appetizer, like this honey brie spread, and your guests won’t miss the challenge of soup. For the main, opt to grill so you can socialize outside with guests while you cook.

Offer Warmth

It’s December, and it’s bound to be a cold evening outside. Make it work well by offering blankets and pillows to your guests, and a seating arrangement that allows for space between groups. Invest in an outdoor heater, or enjoy the coziness of an outdoor firepit, where guests can hang pre-dinner, or post-meal.

Warm Cocktails — A Must

While the food is being prepped, share your mixology talents with friends and family by offering a warm cocktail during your pre-dinner party. Even better, select a few cocktails to feature on a menu and allow guests to choose which one they prefer. A hot toddy or warm spiced cranberry cocktail are great seasonal favorites.

Take the prepwork seriously while entertaining outdoors this holiday season, and the extra efforts will be enjoyed by all. For more great lifestyle and entertaining tips, check out the Wimberly at Deerwood blog.