3 Fun and Frugal Summer Get-Togethers


fun and frugalStaying home during the summer doesn’t need to be boring. You don’t have to go away to have fun. Plan some fun family-friendly events that that you can look forward to throughout the summer. They don’t have to be extravagant to be a success. Pick up discount party supplies and decorations to get ready for your events. Invite some friends, neighbors and family members to stop by. Stay relaxed and connected. Here are three ideas for fun and frugal get-togethers to help you get started.

Backyard Luau

Aloha means hello and good-bye in Hawaiian. Say hello to the summer and good-bye to the school year with a family-friendly luau. Accessorize with colorful poly leis or fabric flower leis with matching hair clips for each guest. Pick up some Musician’s Friend’s ukuleles to achieve the sound of Hawaii. Raffia or plastic grass skirts for kids and adults are a must-have for a luau. To keep costs low, make it a pot luck or serve manageable foods like fresh fruit skewers, cold ham slices, grilled ham or chicken and pineapple kabobs, banana nut bread, macadamia nut cookies and citrus-garnished punch. Create a limbo stick with a broom handle or a pole and tie balloons, raffia or crepe paper streamers to the ends for a more festive look.

Independence Day Picnic

Keep the theme red, white and blue. Use cups, napkins and plates in a mix of patriotic colors. Party decorations are simple with streamers, ribbons, luminaries and balloons. Keep the menu simple with hot dogs and fresh vegetables on the grill. A fixings station will help guests personalize their meal. Kick off the event with a neighborhood parade, inviting the kids to decorate their bikes or wagons, march with friends and family, then head to the picnic afterward.

Watermelon Day

Celebrate National Watermelon Day on Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013. Have a watermelon rolling contest, a basket carving contest and, if you’re daring, a seed spitting contest. Slice up some fresh watermelon, providing plastic tablecloths and plenty of napkins. Decorate red and green balloons with felt-tipped markers to make them look like watermelons. Include red, white, green and black crepe paper streamers for decorations. If it’s too hot or rainy outside, hold your get-together in a screened-in porch or carport.

For some fun activities at your event, put on some music, play some simple games and provide party favors as frugal prizes for the winners. Remember, it doesn’t have to cost a lot to be a lot of fun. You can always use the leftover party decorations and supplies for other events, like birthdays, family reunions and a back-to-school party.

Nikki is an independent writer for DollarTree.com. Dollar Tree offers great deals on office supplies, party supplies and more.

Readers: What fun and frugal ideas for get-togethers would you like to share?

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26 Responses to 3 Fun and Frugal Summer Get-Togethers

  1. Miss T 05/20/2013 at 9:36 am #

    Great ideas. We have a lot of backyard get togethers in summer. In fact we are just planning one now. They are so much fun and are really cheap. All you need is a few outdoor games and you are good to go.

    • Paul 05/20/2013 at 6:00 pm #

      One of the best things about summer are the cookouts and backyard get-togethers!

  2. Midlife Finance 05/20/2013 at 9:51 am #

    This July 4th weekend, I’m going to the World Domination Summit locally. It’s great because I don’t have to pay for hotels and it should be a lot of fun. Now that we have a kid, it’s fun to explore locally.

    • Paul 05/20/2013 at 6:03 pm #

      World Domination? Sounds impressive Joe! My kids are just about grown now, my advice is take your kids everywhere and enjoy every minute with them!

  3. Mike@WeOnlyDoThisOnce 05/20/2013 at 8:03 pm #

    Love the watermelon contest idea! Will try to put things together.

  4. Felix Lee 05/21/2013 at 5:34 pm #

    We usually have backyard picnic during summer with the kids. We have barbecues while the kids are playing around.

    • Paul 05/22/2013 at 6:16 am #

      It’s one of the best and most inexpensive ways to entertain!

  5. KC @ genxfinance 05/23/2013 at 7:52 am #

    Nice watermelon photo. Anyway, we are planning something fun this summer and that includes backyard BBQ party. You can never go wrong with that. It’s always fun to spend time with your close friends and families without having to spend a lot.

    • Paul 05/23/2013 at 6:16 pm #

      Memorial day is right around the corner and I am looking forward to spending the day with my kids!

  6. Thomas | Your Daily Finance 06/03/2013 at 7:11 am #

    Usually we either do a BBQ at home or go to the beach. May have to start an official watermelon day as well. The 4th is my birthday so we always have a party!

    • Paul 06/05/2013 at 5:40 pm #

      I wish we lived near a beach, I live in Phoenix, AZ! The 4th is a great time to spend with family and have an outdoor BBQ!

  7. Amy 06/05/2013 at 3:34 am #

    The watermelon photo is great!

  8. One Cent at a Time 06/05/2013 at 8:17 pm #

    My dad can curve watermelon beautifully. The picture reminded me of him :)

    • Paul 06/05/2013 at 8:51 pm #

      As a kid I remember having watermelon seed spitting contests in the backyard! Nothing like the taste of sweet watermelon on a hot summer day!

  9. Untemplater 06/05/2013 at 11:15 pm #

    That’s funny there’s a watermelon day. I love watermelon drinks. Even a semi sweet watermelon makes a fantastic drink.

    • Paul 06/06/2013 at 7:49 am #

      I’m more a lemon or lime guy myself! Margaritas are my favorite summer drink!

  10. Greg@Thriftgenuity 06/06/2013 at 6:25 am #

    I am all about any excuse for some stay at home, backyard barbecue fun. One way to save on 4th of July decorations is buy Memorial Day stuff right after Memorial Day and use it for the 4th.

    • Paul 06/06/2013 at 7:52 am #

      You should try marinated lamb kabobs with a dill sour cream sauce. Throw those babys on some pita and enjoy!

  11. Daisy @ Prairie Eco Thrifter 06/06/2013 at 7:15 am #

    I love themed parties! Great suggestions. I went to a luau party one time and we had a lot of fun. I can’t imagine it was expensive, the dollar store has a LOT of the supplies needed.

    • Paul 06/06/2013 at 7:54 am #

      Sounds like fun! Not sure if my knees would be able to take the limbo contest though!

  12. Little House 06/07/2013 at 6:34 am #

    Great ideas! I love the image of the beautifully carved watermelon. I’d add for those that don’t have a backyard, have a picnic at a local park, enjoy an indoor/outdoor party on a patio or rooftop, or maybe invite yourself over to a friends and host an outdoor party at their house (with them as the special guests ;) ). I love summer.

    • Paul 06/07/2013 at 5:10 pm #

      Lots of great ideas for summer get-togethers, thanks for sharing!

  13. freebieshare 06/16/2013 at 7:22 am #

    Excellent tips there. I think a lot of people fail to use their imagination when deciding upon get togethers. There’s really a whole manner of things that groups can do and it needn’t cost much. Of course it helps if the weather is fine. You really can’t beat summer in the garden with friends and a BBQ!

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