Between indoors and outdoors
A porch is a great halfway option for hosting. It allows you to host outside your home without being fully exposed to the elements. For instance, let’s say you have a beautiful picnic planned on your back lawn. Then it starts to sprinkle and progresses to actual rain. Soggy hot dogs, anyone?
Your porch is there for just such a potential problem. It’ll keep off some of the rain and keep the party drier. Of course, if it does pour you may still have to move inside, depending on the nature of your porch. Obviously, porches are a great help, but a driving rain may pose a problem even for a good one.
Decor ideas for Labor Day
First, let’s think about some ways you can make your porch beautiful for the day.
- Potted mums would be a lovely addition. Plus, they’re pleasantly “autumn-y” so keep them on after the party and count them as your fall decor.
- Think about decorating with small flags. It’s a fun way to make your porch festive for the occasion.
- Pinwheels can be fun too. Accordingly, stick a whole bunch of them in a large mason jar. Then, hand them out to the kids as they arrive.
Next, let’s get to what you’ve been waiting for: options for setting up your porch for the big day. Naturally, your setup options may be affected by some of these factors:
- Size of your porch
- Type of porch
- Size of party
- Type of party
One big group
Here’s an option for a large party on a large porch. Arrange your grill, assuming you’re barbecuing, off to one side preferably by the kitchen door. Then, gather a whole bunch of chairs and set them up in one great big conversation area.
If you have an enormous porch, make a circle. If you don’t, set up an oval or semicircle or something a little less organized – just a whole bunch of chairs set up in such a way that everybody can see everybody. This way, you may be able to have a whole-group conversation.
Of course, you may have a party where not everybody knows everybody. Additionally, if you know that quite a few people prefer quiet, one-on-one conversation, then a big-group setup may not be for you.
Here’s what you could do. Split your porch into several conversation areas. Setup up a group of 2-4 chairs with a little table nearby. If you’re eating on the porch, the table can handle the cups while people hold plates on their laps.
Then, set up another similar area in a second spot on the porch. Finally, set a small folding table or picnic table, if you’ve got the space, with some chairs for a great eating spot. People can visit here, too.
Spread ‘em out
If you think you’ll be having a quiet day at home without much visiting and a lot of napping, consider setting up your porch with this in mind. Spread out comfy rocking chairs and reclining lawn chairs. Give people space to catch a few z’s
Keep the kids in mind
Try to think up a special area for the kids. Especially if you know several of your guests will have young children, plan a spot with them in mind. Layout a small rug with some toys and games. And, if you want to add even more fun, grab some personal-sized snacks – juice boxes, packaged candies, or animal crackers.
You may want to set the food up in the mobile home. This way, you save space on the porch which equates to more seating and visiting space.
However, you may choose to set up a table and serve the food on the porch. If so, remember to secure the napkins otherwise they may be the first thing to go if the wind picks up.
Also, know that empty coffee mugs can double as containers for plastic cutlery.
Porches create more fun!
Perhaps, after reading our porch blueprint post, you went ahead and added a porch on to your place. This is certainly the perfect occasion to host your first party in your “newly-porch-ed” home! Armed with these possibilities for setting up the porch, move on to planning the food and some fun games.