Labor Day weekend is right around the corner, and that means we’ve got one more chance to do it up right summer style!  It’s time to start thinking get-together, hanging out with family and friends, and enjoying all those summer activities that we enjoy the most! And one of the best ways to celebrate summer’s last big weekend is with a pool party!

For this Labor Day’s big bash, I’ve got 5 tips for hosting a great pool party, plus a fun little pool party table for us to ogle and discuss.  So let’s get started!

Have Plenty of Extras

Pool party etiquette requires that one bring their own towel, sunscreen, water wings, etc.  But not everyone will remember.  So as a gracious hostess, it’s a good idea to have a few extra of the basics on hand.  Set out a few extra fluffy towels, a couple of bottles of sunscreen, floaties, and maybe a ball or two for that impromptu game of volleyball that is bound to happen.  It’s also not a bad idea to have a couple lawn games ready for those who might spend more time out of the pool than in.  Lawn darts, corn hole, or horseshoes are always a good bet.

Shade and Hydration are a Must

While a pool party is all about fun in the sun, it is important to have some shade and plenty of drinking water, fruit waters, or lemonades available for your guests. Open up a few patio umbrellas and put together an easily accessible drink station.  This also means that you will need to make restroom facilities available.  Make sure that you have planned ahead of time to make that restroom swim guest friendly.

Good Food Goes Without Saying

Party and food go hand in hand!  Decide beforehand what you will serve and let your guests know.  Will you have finger foods, chips, and other little nibbles?  Are you thinking of firing up the grill for burgers and dogs?  Maybe you’ll do both!  Don’t count out the joys of potluck either.  If you are inviting close friends and family, it’s ok to ask them to bring that pasta salad or special dessert that everyone loves.

Your Pool Party Table

Whether you are planning on serving buffet style or sitting down together to eat, if you’re going to have food you have to have a table!  And this a great opportunity with just a few pool-themed decorations to make your guests feel extra special.  My pool themed table is set up for a sit down meal, but the same elements could be used for any type of food service.  Don’t worry about buying special decorations.  Just use what you have!  I have 3 beach towels rolled up in a metal bucket with some mini beach balls for my centerpiece.  Gumballs are a colorful and fun way to capitalize on that beach ball theme.  Not to mention that both the beach balls and gumballs make great party favors to send home with my younger guests!  Blue and white nautical stripes in the table runner and towels and tons of fun color with the napkins are the rule of the day!

Pool Safety

It’s ok to have boundaries and rules at your party.  As a matter of fact, with a pool party they are especially necessary for everyone’s safety and fun!  Make sure your rules are clear from the get-go.  Every host and hostess has different rules and boundaries, and thoughtful guests should respect all of them.  It’s also a good idea to ask another adult or two to help you keep an eye on your swimmers throughout your party, especially your young or less experienced ones.  You might even want to provide a splash pool for babies and toddlers.

As always, hosting a get-together doesn’t have to be stressful.  Some thoughtful planning and communication on the front end can go a long way!  Decorations should be easy, making creative use of what you have on hand.  Because after all, the main reason you are getting together is because you enjoy one another’s company, and no matter the occasion, that’s what it’s really all about!


5 tips for hosting a summer pool party, plus a pool-themed table to set the tone!

For more great hosting how-to’s, try these ASD favorites!

Summer Nights: 10 Tips for Outdoor Entertaining

5 (ahem… 6!) Secrets to Hosting a Fabulous Dinner Party

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