Summer is right around the corner. In addition to the warm weather, the season brings opportunities for get-togethers with family and friends. If you happen to have a pool in your backyard, you know your house is destined to be THE place to be. The good news is that with a little planning, you can host the best pool parties of the season.

swimming pool with a colorful float in the water

Stock Up on Favorites

It doesn’t matter if you’re planning a specific event or you have a lot of impromptu parties, stocking up on the essentials is important. This includes things like paper products  —  plates, cups, napkins, etc., and food items, too.

Some items that freeze well and last all summer long include hot dogs, burger patties, and chicken wings. You can even freeze the buns.

Beverage items can also be purchased in advance. If you are hosting kids and teenagers, soda and drink mixes can be stored for months. For adult gatherings, stock up on beer and wine as well as mixers for cocktails. Another fun addition is margarita freeze pops. You can pop these in the freezer a day or two before the party and have a cold, refreshing treat ready to go.

Safety First

Before you have anyone over, make sure your pool area is safe, and you’ve taken all the necessary precautions. Fencing around your pool is essential, especially if there are kids coming over. You need to make sure that young guests are supervised at all times, and a fence will keep them out of the pool until you’re ready for them to swim. 

Be sure to ask parents if their child can swim and how well. This can help you decide if they should have access to the entire pool or if you want them to wear a life jacket at all times or not.

Life jackets and rescue equipment are also important. If you have a deep end, make sure your rescue pole can reach the bottom. It could also help to know CPR and basic rescue techniques. 

The Fun Stuff

Now that your pool is safe and you have the basics for food service stocked, it’s time to plan the fun stuff. A theme can really add to the event. A beach motif is popular, of course, and you can achieve this easily with some lounge chairs and umbrellas for guests and for the drinks. You can even go all out and bring in some actual sand for your yard. A fire pit can mimic a beach bonfire.

You can also consider a tiki bar/tropical theme for your party. Paper lanterns hung around the pool and patio add to the ambiance. You can also convert an existing pergola or gazebo into an actual tiki bar with the addition of a little natural grass on the roof. If you have the space but not the structure, consider renting one from a local party supply store.

Retro beach parties are a blast, and they are super easy to do as a pool party as well. Pick a decade, like the 1960s or 70s, and tell your guests to dress appropriately. Vintage swimwear and cover-ups will add to the vibe. Pick some psychedelic colors and decor items or even a disco ball. It doesn’t have to be over the top  — unless you want it to be. Don’t forget to have the appropriate music for the event as well.

The most important thing to remember about a pool party (in addition to safety measures) is to have fun, both in the planning and for the actual party itself. Planning out your menu and preparing as much food beforehand as possible will help make sure your pool party is a success — and that you get to enjoy it as well.