Event Pros’ Tips for Fourth of July BBQ Success

Entertaining  / 
Entertain your squad with fireworks and fun this upcoming July 4th Weekend. Event planning pros Gabrielle and Lorraine Wile of Wile Events show us the way to host the perfect soiree.
1) Honor Thy Red White and Blue. Fourth of July is one of our very favorite holidays to celebrate. To showcase our love of our country, we wanted to honor the patriotic colors of our nation but also to take our design beyond just the standard traditional flag decor. For our Independence Day party this year, we decided to take a modern approach to the tried and true, Red White and Blue. We dressed our table with a fresh navy and white Ikat print custom linen tablecloth, which elevates the design but still screams summer. The stylish blue and white dinner plates, gold flatware and napkin rings lend a chic nod while the crisp white vases filled with lush red blooms helped to round out the patriotic vibe we were striving for. White ocean coral and rattan accents helped to keep things from getting too serious and evoked a cool summer vibe. To get a similar look, think outside the box this year try some modern graphic prints or layering textures for your table. Even taking a standard white plate and upgrading to a cool print napkin, casually arranging some fresh flowers or herbs from your yard in pretty vessels and lighting lots of candles or lanterns adds instant polish to a backyard barbecue.
2) Keep the menu simple. Summer is the very best time to showcase how lucky we are to live in the Garden State. While farm stands, markets and produce sections of the supermarket are brimming with fresh fruits and vegetables, it's super easy to pull together a casual and delicious menu that requires very little cooking that even most discerning guests will appreciate. Highlight the best of the season by incorporating summer corn, heirloom tomatoes, blueberries, watermelon, fresh herbs, berry filled pies to your menu. Grilled meats or seafood add sustenance to your offering and you literally can't go wrong if you keep the preparation simple. 
3) Celebrate childhood nostalgia by incorporating elements of good old fashioned summer pastimes. For outdoor parties, one tradition we love is to put out firefly jars for our little guests to catch and release throughout the evening. All you need are some simple jars, a lid with air holes poked on top and a pretty tag to tie in your design theme. Cue smiles, squealing and memory making goodness. Adults feeling left out? Bundle a small amount of sparklers together, tie with a pretty ribbon and add a name tag- these will serve as your place cards for dinner as well as provide entertainment and ambiance once the sun goes down. 
4) Cool off with a cocktail (obviously).The best way to beat the heat is to keep the drinks cold and plentiful. While we love a great cocktail, and beer is the BBQ standard, we also love the simplicity of loading up a drink tub filled with ice cold sparkling ciders. They are super refreshing, require no mixing and compliment grilled items, fresh salads and summer fruit. One of our very favorites is No.139 Dry Cider in White or Rosé from Wôlffer Estate in Sagaponack, NY, if you can't make the trip out East they will happily ship it to your door. No Bartender required. 
5) Bugs crashing your BBQ? Place a fan outside near your sitting area. Mosquito's don't like too much breeze because it throws off their infrared senses and make it more difficult for them to fly around you. A simple solution is to create a constant breeze with a fan, which not only keeps your guests comfortable in the summer heat but sends them home with nary a bite. 

Decor List:
Tablecloth made with linen from Fabric.com
Plates, Chargers, Napkins and Glassware- Crate and Barrel, Paramus
Ocean Coral and gold napkin rings- Pottery Barn, The Shops at Riverside
Flowers- Wile Events
Custom Menus and Tags- Wile Events 
Table Design and Styling- Wile Events
Photography- Wile Events
Vases- Planters Resource, NYC
Gold Flatware- West Elm, Paramus

Wile Events is a full service event, floral and invitation design firm based in Bergen County, NJ, and is comprised of owners and sisters-in-law, Gabrielle and Lorraine Wile. With a shared loved of entertaining and elevating the beauty in the everyday; we strive to inspire, create and add style to the moments in life that deserve celebrating. As professionals, we set out to share our passion and expertise with those seeking to celebrate special moments both intimate and grand with creative vision and style.
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