Although fall may be my favorite season and it’s still a few months away, the moment I start feeling the warm sunny vibes of summer, my planning for summer parties begins. Whether I’m planning to host a cocktail party or just a small barbeque gathering of friends, I always keep three words in mind to help me plan the perfect summer party – Fun, Bright, and Green. Party planning can be stressful, but I don’t want to put any of that pressure and stress on the environment. For this reason, I focus on finding easy and green ways to keep my parties easy, simple and eco-friendly. If you’re assuming that keeping things green is going to cost an arm and a leg or it’s just too difficult to do, think again. Follow these 5 easy tips on how to make your summer party eco-friendly and not only will your guests enjoy it, but Mother Nature will thank you for it too.
1. Invite Your Friends, Not the Trees
Gather a list of all of your guests’ email addresses and send them an online invitation which will go directly to their email the moment you click ‘Send’. Not only will you save paper and money on stamps, but sending online invitations will also help you keep track of who you sent the invites to, when they were received and which guests will or will not be attending your party.
Filling empty glass jars with water, a few shiny marbles, and some pretty colorful flowers can create beautiful centerpieces for any summer event. You can also add some creativity to your centerpiece by shopping your local thrift shop for jars that vary in shape and size. Thinking of where to get fresh flowers? Try growing some nice cut flowers in your own backyard. Not only will your backyard look full of life and color, but planting flowers will get you outdoors every day to help you connect with nature.
3. Think Bright, Eat Right
Get fresh food and help support your local farmers by shopping Farmers Markets for your summer party. Whether you plan to serve veggie kabobs or fresh fruit salads, your local Farmers Market will surely have just what you’re looking for. Whole foods with brighter colors contain more nutrients and antioxidants, and saying no to packaged party foods like chips, pre-made dips, pizza takeout, etc, will save substantial amount of waste.
4. Give Junk, Get Treasure
One other way to make your party eco-friendly is by havin a gift exchange with recycled items only. In your online invitation, ask your guests to bring one wrapped item from home that they no longer need or want and let them know there will be a gift exchange some time during the party. You’ll want to be sure that everyone gets a gift, so remember to wrap an extra gift or two and have it ready in case someone forgets to bring one.
5. Clean Lighting
If you plan to add some dim lighting to your party once the moon rises, soy candles are the way to go. Unlike most candles that release toxins hazardous to our health and the outside air, soy candles are natural and non-toxic. I also love that soy candles burn cooler and last longer than other types of candles.
These are just 5 of the many ways you can throw an eco-friendly party this summer, but I’m sure you get the idea now and you’ll soon be able to come up with ideas of your own. Just remember to have fun, keep it bright, and think green. Who knows? Maybe after throwing your first green party, your friends will enjoy it so much that they may want to do the same and host their own eco-friendly party. So what are you waiting for? Pick a date, make your list of guests and start planning an unforgettable summer party filled with fun, color, and earthly love.
Any summer party plans? Please share!
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Photo: Carlis Sanchez via Flickr; Malta Peter Grima via Flickr