Make the most of warmer evenings by bringing family movie night outdoors. Or plan an outdoor birthday party for your little movie buff.
Take the big-screen experience outside and celebrate the movies at home. Your backyard can become your second (or only!) family room. Here are all the ingredients you need to make movie night at home just a smidge more memorable during the summer months.
And possibly make you the coolest parents in town.
Outdoor Movie Gear & Gadgets
Tacking up an old, white sheet would do the trick but where’s the fun in that? Today’s gadgets are easy-peasy, so you’ll be set up and ready to watch in no time. And with comfy seating and cosy blankets (just in case!), you may just be tempted to go for the double feature.
Inflatable Movie Screen
Inflatable screens self-inflate in minutes and vary in size from 14 – 20 feet. This model from Costway comes with everything you need for setup, including blower, stakes and tethers, plus a carry-bag for travel or storage.
It’s surprising how widely the prices vary for home movie projectors. Is a $1000 one really that much better than a $100 one? And why spend so much on something you might not use that frequently? This model from Viewsonic sits nicely in the middle of that price range with positive reviews to boot. It has built-in speakers, offers a great picture, and is easy to use, with HDMI as well as mini-USB inputs.
Cushy Lounge Chairs
A bonus of the non-theatre movie is not being subjected to sticky floors or relegated to the dreaded front row. Enjoy the best seat in the house and splash out on some awesome outdoor loungers. This one from Pottery Barn has room for two (three for a cuddle) and the water-repellent cushion comes in a number of different darker, spill-concealing shades and patterns. It’s made of certified sustainable wood, is adjustable, and has wheels for easy manouvering.
Hudson’s Bay Chunky Polar Fleece Blanket
Just in case the night gets cool, or one of the kiddos falls asleep, snuggle into a cosy fleece blanket that’s durable and easy to wash, but oozes iconic style. This staple of Canadiana from The Bay comes with a handy carrying strap, for travel indoors to the couch, perhaps, once summer’s over.
Movie Snacks Better Than at the Theatre
Make dinner and a movie one and the same, and extra super fun, with trimmings reminiscent of a drive-in diner. Candy floss for dessert is way more awesome than a bag of overpriced gummies.
There’s no need to drag your good bowls outside and do they really hold enough popcorn anyway? There’s a cute assortment of plastic popcorn buckets available on Amazon. They’re reusable and should hold more than enough snacks to account for spillage. The neighbourhood squirrels will love you!
Cotton Candy Maker
Turn your drive-in dining experience into a quick side trip to the midway without the wallet-emptying games or new additions to your already overcrowded zoo of stuffed animals. Spin sugar or your favourite hard candy into cotton candy in minutes with this handy-dandy little machine, or as long as it takes to argue that candy floss is the better term.
Before planning your big backyard family movie night, there are always necessary bits and pieces that fall by the wayside.
Here are a few set-up essentials you can’t forget:
- A power bar
- An extension cord
- Component cables
- External speakers (if not included on your projector)