Outdoor Party Rental Guide

| Industry Insight

Your Set-up Guide for A Successful Outdoor Party

If there’s one thing that all different types of outdoor parties have in common, it’s the joy of bringing people together. Whether you’re coordinating a block party for all of your neighbors or hosting a sophisticated soirée, this set-up guide will ensure your guests are comfortable and impressed.

1) Backyard Barbecue

With summer holidays such as Memorial Day and the Fourth of July more than enough reason to fire up the grill, you’ll want to sharpen your planning skills — and your steak knives — to guarantee a successful backyard barbecue.

Even though you probably didn’t require a formal RSVP from your guests for this casual get-together, you must at least have an estimated headcount as well as an idea of who’s bringing a dish to pass. Allowing your guests to bring their own potato salad and finger food to share frees up your budget for making sure everyone is seated comfortably — and add some cute decor.

If it’s a sunny day with no chance of rain, you’ll want to find a shady area to set up. Rectangle tables are an optimal surface for spreading out that smorgasboard of potluck dishes and paper plates. You can even dress it in a mid-drop checkered tablecloth for that picture-perfect barbecue look.

As far as seating is concerned, why not go for a wholesome nostalgic vibe? Rent some classic picnic tables and dress them up with a half-drop checkered tablecloth. Half-drop table linens are ideal for casual afternoon events, especially where children are present. And, as cost-effective as they are cute, you won’t need to rent chairs as picnic tables have attached bench seating.

Last but not least, don’t leave your grill master out to dry! Rent a square table as your barbecue prep table to keep your grilling area efficient and organized.

2) Graduation Parties

It probably seems like just yesterday that you waved goodbye to your little one as they climbed onto the school bus for the first time; fast forward to now and you’re knee-deep in invitations and old photographs planning their graduation party.

Since invitations are sent out weeks in advance, it’s not as easy to reschedule a graduation party as it would be a casual barbecue, which means, rain or sunshine, you’ll want some sort of covered shelter. Many people use this time as an incentive to clean out their garage or the upper level of their barn; however, if you do not have access to an actual structure, you can rent a tent.

Deciding which tent is right for your party is really a matter of personal preference, budget, and location.

Pole tents are an affordable option and can be set up anywhere stakes can go in the ground. Pole tents get their name from the support poles that help hold up the tent top, giving it the signature “swoop” effect of most party tents.

Frame tents are aesthetically pleasing with clean lines and more open space due to having a steel frame instead of support poles. Frame tents do not need to be staked into the ground so they can be set up on any surface.

You’re probably expecting a fair amount of well-wishers for your graduate, so you’ll want to provide ample seating for everyone to enjoy a sloppy joe and a slice of cake. This includes classic folding chairs and setting up a few rows of rectangle tables. You can even set them up end to end. Guests will easily be able to socialize with their immediate neighbors to either side of them and across from them. Since people will be coming and going all day long, you don’t have to accommodate everyone at the same time. Most people will sit down to enjoy a plate of food and then move on to the other activities your party has to offer. In addition, you can also rent umbrella tables to provide outdoor seating.

Similar to a backyard barbecue, you’ll want to choose half-drop linens to dress up your tables. Be creative when choosing your table linens as there are a variety of colors, textures, and finishes. Table linens and napkins are a fun and easy way to incorporate the alma mater colors.

In addition to providing seating for your guests, you’ll need a rectangle table or two for food. Set this table up along the wall so it’s out of the way of general traffic. Have a separate rectangle table for the cake. Although it’s unlikely the cake will be so large as to occupy the entire surface of the table, this space is a great opportunity to display artwork, medals, and framed pictures of your graduate. You may also want to set up the card box on this same table as well as dedicate room for gifts.

3) Block Parties

If you’re coordinating a block party for your community, odds are you’ve got a lot more than table settings on your plate. Luckily, setting up seating and eating accommodations for your block party is easy.

First, you’ll need a frame tent in case of rain. The frame tent can be set up anywhere — even in the middle of the street — and is a great place to house your live music as well as tables for eating and conversation.

With all kinds of entertainment in one place from live music to pony rides, inflatable bounce houses and more, block parties are high-energy. You’ll want to designate specific areas for certain activities. You’ll also want to provide enough seating so that people can come and go at their leisure, but, similar to a graduation party, you don’t need to accommodate everyone at once. Set up a few rectangle tables in the designated eating area. Limited space means that people who don’t know one another will have to become acquainted.

If you’re having any type of buffet, set up several rectangle tables end to end to hold all of your fare. Some other tables you may want to consider are a table for registration and donations as well as tables for playing cards or chess and tables for holding face painting supplies.

Don’t forget the dance floor to create a truly interactive and memorable experience!

4) Wine Tasting Parties

Whether or not it’s Wine Wednesday, there is simply no better way to show off your sophisticated pallet than to host a wine tasting event in your own backyard. In order to allow your friends to best discuss the wines they’re tasting, you’ll want your gathering to be more intimate, which means a small guest list.

Choose a round table to encourage conversation among you and your guests and dress it in a ¾-length satin linen. Long enough to look elegant and formal, the couple inches from the ground will ensure the linen stays clean.

Ideally, your hors d’oeuvres will fit in the middle of your dining table so people can remain seated while enjoying their wine. There are a variety of plates to choose from for your hors d’oeuvres from contemporary square plates to round plates with a metallic rim to accent your theme.

As far as seating is concerned for your small guest list, the chiavari chair always makes a statement of simple elegance, although if you want to add an element of ethereal enchantment to your party, pair the glass plate with the mirage chair. The farm chair is also a favorite for rustic-themed tastings and becomes part of the decor especially when surrounded with grape vines and corks in illuminated wine bottles.

Let’s not forget that the purpose of this gathering is to taste different kinds of wine, so make sure you have the right types of glasses for each varietal you’ll be serving. The Pure and Vina collections offer a variety of glasses ideal for serving all types of wine and champagne.

5) Cocktail Parties

Birthdays, anniversaries, and engagements are all great occasions to host a cocktail party. Since the focus of cocktail parties is to get to know your neighbors, perse, it’s mainly a standing event so you don’t need much in regards to tables and chairs.

It’s not a bad idea to have some available seating, though, such as a couple cabaret tables with chiavari chairs or if you’re going for a contemporary vibe, the straight geometric lines of the classic folding chair will be a smart complement to the square plates.

Spread out your appetizers on several Highboy tables arranged throughout your space. You can drape these tables with a matte or dazzle floor-length linen — tying it with a ribbon to add a pop of color and personality.

Once you’ve decided on your drink menu, you’ll likely need a variety of glassware. From hi ball glasses to cosmopolitans and champagne flutes, each glass is specifically designed to accentuate the flavors of each beverage.

You could also set up a frame tent and add sidewalls or flowy fabric to create a beautiful open-air venue. Providing uplighting and a dance floor will make your cocktail party the event of the summer.

Well Dressed Tables Brings Everyone Together

High-quality rentals from Well Dressed Tables by Arena Americas can transform any outdoor space into a community festival or a private oasis. Rent from Well Dressed Tables and be the host or hostess who brings your family and friends together this summer.