7 Things Not to Miss in Creating a Fun & Festive 4th of July Party

Fireworks, sparklers, red, white and blue! Corn on the cob, ice cream, barbecue! Not much gets a crowd more excited to celebrate than the Fourth of July. This is one holiday that nearly everyone you know participates in. The great thing about the Fourth is, even a simple backyard party can be brought to the next level with a few easy but intentional additions. Here are a few great ideas that you can implement to make your party fun, festive and successful:

1. Fourth of July Punch

Kids and adults alike will love this easy and delicious punch and it only has three ingredients: Red fruit punch, blue Gatorade and diet Sprite. The keys to success are: fill your container full of ice first, then layer the liquids from highest to least sugar content (punch, Gatorade then diet Sprite) and finally, make sure you slowly pour the liquids onto the ice so that the ice helps “filter” it gently into visible layers. You could also pour over the back of a spoon to help evenly disperse it. If you just dump one liquid in after the other, you’ll end up with a purple drink that’s still tasty, but not clearly layered in red, white and blue!

You can make this in a big clear beverage dispenser or punch bowl and it will look stunning on your beverage table. Serve it in either clear or red and blue plastic cups.

Bonus step: bring it to the next level by using star shaped ice cube trays to make special ice just for this punch!

2. Red, White and Blue Food

The possibilities are endless when it comes to red, white and blue food! You can make a quick and easy trifle out of strawberries or raspberries, blueberries and your choice of yogurt or whipped topping and cubed angel food cake. Or you could make kabobs with the berries and cake cubes.

Looking for something savory instead? Create a delicious southwest layered dip by mixing refried beans with taco seasoning in a 13x9 pan. Top that with sour cream and/or mozzarella and salsa or halved cherry tomatoes arranged in stripes and black beans in the upper corner to represent the blue of the American flag. Serve with blue corn tortilla chips to complete the look. Another option is sliced olives in the upper left corner with cubed mozzarella and pepperoni for the stripes. Serve crackers alongside and you’ve got a great finger food option.

Short on time? Simply arrange whole, fresh strawberries, yogurt dipped pretzels and blueberries in the shape of an American flag on a platter. Less than five minutes to a delicious and beautiful platter of food to display your patriotic pride. Get creative, browse the grocery store for more options in these colors and just go with it!

3. Sparkler Displays

Is it even a Fourth of July party if you don’t have sparklers? Offer “bouquets” of sparklers in mason jars spaced throughout your party. When the sun goes down, assign a family member or friend to wander around with a lighter to light the sparklers for the guests. Take it to the next level by decorating your mason jars in patriotic colors. You can easily do this with paint or some hot glue and ribbon.

4. Dollar Store Flower Vases

These are ridiculously cheap and easy to do! Pick up some fairy lights, tall clear vases and faux flowers in red, white and blue from the dollar store. Layer a few of each color flower first, then tuck the fairy lights down on top, allowing the on switch to still be accessible. Layer the rest of the flowers all around until the vase is full. Repeat with the other vases. Once the sun goes down, turn on the lights! It will create a nice glow and highlight the patriotic colored flowers.

5. Flag Jars

You really can not have an Independence Day party without the flags! Buy mini American flags in bulk online and place them in mason jars throughout your party--on the food tables, beside the sparkler jars, at the entrance. For an added touch, paint the mason jars or fill them with clear stones to help weigh down the flags and keep them from tipping out.

6. Patriotic Quotes

Create your own with famous quotes by historical figures with themes of patriotism, important dates, etc. Put them in frames and set them around your party spot to set the tone of your event. These make great displays at the food or beverage table and eye-catching centerpieces for your dining tables as well. 

7. Yard Games

The easiest way to check two boxes with one item is some DIY yard games! These not only look great and add to your decor but they also provide social activities for your guests to enjoy throughout the party.

Create a tic tac toe grid with some painters tape and spray paint. Purchase inexpensive wooden letters from the craft store and paint them in patriotic colors.

Make a cheap ring toss using glass soda or beer bottles that have been spray painted in red, white and blue. Small embroidery hoops from the craft store make perfect rings for your guests to toss!

Paint empty tin cans and stack them in pyramids. Include a few bean bags and voila, instant fun for guests of all ages. You can even affordably make your own bean bags with patriotic fabric and dried beans.

These 7 ideas are great all together or individually. They make a great jumping off point. Use them to get creative and inspired to make this year’s Fourth of July party the best one yet! Whether you’re hosting or attending, you can still use any and all of these ideas to contribute to your neighborhood potluck or shine as host of your own summer barbecue!

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