Are you gearing up for a big Fourth of July bash? Make this Independence Day one to remember by sprucing up your backyard before the big day. We’ve put together a to-do list to make sure your outdoor space looks stunning for your Fourth of July party. Knock all your chores out in one day or spread these tasks over the week. Either way, your guests are sure to be impressed when they arrive at your party and see your flawless outdoor entertaining area.
Deep Clean Your Deck
If you have a deck or patio, now is the time to give it a little extra attention. Check all over for cracks, protruding nails, or loose boards. Make repairs as needed. You want to especially look for serious issues such as wood rot, signs of termites, loose railings, and any structural problems while you spruce up the deck. If necessary, you may need to look at adding new decking to your backyard.
You may want to power wash and re-stain the deck if the structure is looking a bit rough these days. A good power wash can also make a cement patio look much nicer.
Give Your Grill a Makeover
Your grill will likely be doing work at your Fourth of July party. Whether you plan to grill up juicy steaks and chicken thighs, or classic burgers and hot dogs, you’ll need your grill to be in top shape in time for the celebration. That’s why you want to spend some extra time getting it all cleaned up beforehand. To clean your grill properly, follow the steps below:
- Clean the grates: Use a wire brush to remove any extra bits of food and grease that have built up on the grates. The best time to do this cleaning is shortly after cooking on the grill rather than right before you cook on it. Clean while the grates are still warm but not too hot. If your grates are made of cast iron, apply a little oil with a paper towel after cleaning.
- Empty it out: If you have a charcoal grill, you need to safely dump out the ashes after every use. Use a brush to make sure all the ashes get out, including ashes from the ash catcher if your grill has one. This maintenance task should be done after every grilling session, but to get your grill extra clean before the party, you should also wash out your charcoal grill with warm soapy water. If you have a gas grill, lift the grate and clean the burner shields. Then, clean out the bottom of the grill and empty the grease tray.
- Wash the outside: On a typical day, you probably don’t mind a few spots on the outside of your grill. But to make a good impression on your guests, take a little time to wipe down your grill’s exterior before the party. You can use warm soapy water and a soft sponge for extra scrubbing power. If you have a stainless-steel grill, make sure to use a stainless-steel cleaner and wipe with a microfiber cloth for a shiny finish.
Show Your Lawn a Little TLC
When it comes to an outdoor party, you should treat your lawn like the flooring inside. If you were inviting people to your home, you would not leave your floors looking like a hot mess, right? Instead of vacuuming and mopping, your pre-party plan for an outdoor soiree should include a little extra effort to make your lawn look its best. Be sure to mow the lawn a day or two before the party. This mowing gives your grass a fresh-cut look while allowing time for any of those fresh-cut clippings to dry out and blow away.
You should also rake up any leaves that may have fallen and pull out the string trimmer to clip the grass in any tight areas where your mower can’t fit. Consider adding a few potted plants or planting some flowers along the edges of garden beds. If you’re still several weeks out from your party, don’t forget to regularly water the lawn so it will be lush in time for your gathering.
Make Your Yard Pest-Proof
Nothing ruins a backyard bash quicker than a swarm of bugs giving everyone itchy welts. To keep bugs at bay during your party, you’ll want to stock up on a few products. While bug spray and citronella candles are certainly still good options, anti-bug products have come a long way in recent years. Insect traps that use a special UV fluorescent bulb to attract bugs can be especially effective. You can also use a special spray or powder on your yard to deter bugs from coming near your party.
In addition to using these insect deterrent products, be sure to address any issues that may attract bugs in the first place. Standing water is especially appealing to mosquitoes, so empty the birdbath, clear out the gutters, and resolve any other issues that may lead water to collect. You can also invest in a few plants that deter insects, such as petunias, marigolds, chrysanthemums, lavender, rosemary, basil, or mint.
Create a Cozy Vibe
If you want people to enjoy your Fourth of July party, take steps to create an inviting atmosphere in your backyard. During the day, provide shaded areas by using patio umbrellas or awnings. You can also set up a fan or two to help people cool off or provide a small sprinkler for the kids to run around in. Set up your patio furniture and break out your spare camping chairs to give guests plenty of places to sit.
Add a fire pit to keep everyone cozy when night falls and temperatures drop. Be sure that you also provide ample outdoor lighting. Lighting will encourage folks to keep the party going and make your backyard safer to walk around in after dark.
Now that you have your backyard in better shape, it’s time to get the party started. Celebrate Independence Day with friends and family in a beautiful and inviting outdoor space by following the steps in this backyard prep guide.