Use this BBQ party planning checklist
To Enjoy a Stress-Free Afternoon and
Have a Little Fun For a Change




For a worry free event use our party planning checklist.

So everyone's over at your house.

The yard is packed. The food and salads- are numerous, enticing and delicious. 

The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and everyone is having a great time.

Except you, of course. (Well someone has to barbecue, serve, pour drinks, clear up, swat flies and in general run the operation).

Now for the good news - with a little planning, everyone can enjoy the BBQ - even you.

Just follow the steps outlined in the BBQ party planning checklist below and you're sure to remain stress-free:

Do you prefer a printable party planning checklist? >>Click here to print>>

4 Stage Party Planning Checklist

Stage 1: About a Week Before

Task
Click box to Check
Make up a guest list, and send out invitations (or just call everybody up)
Plan the menu, and make a shopping list of everything you need to buy. If vegetarians are among your guests, plan for them as well.
If friends and family will be attending, see if you can allocate some of the work (Find volunteers to make salads or prepare deserts, for instance. This will leave you basically free to just attend to the grill)   
If you use a gas grill, check to see you have enough propane (having a refill on hand is always good policy). Likewise, if you use charcoal, make sure you have enough coals.   
If you need to rent or borrow any equipment, make necessary arrangements.

Ready to move on to stage 2 of your party planning checklist?

Stage 2: 2-3 Days Before the BBQ Party.

Task
Click box to Check
Start preparing everything a few days before the event. Make a list of things you have to get.
Food and beverages (Alcoholic and non-alcoholic, as required)  
Paper plates, napkins and towels, and plastic utensils if you're planning on using them. It's usually a good idea to get slightly more than the number of guests you've invited. 
Any special decorations, tablecloths, meats, seafood or anything else you may need.    
If any foods you're planning can be made ahead of time and frozen, such as snacks and mixes, now's the time to get started.  

Ready to move on to stage 3 of your party planning checklist?

Stage 3: The Day Before      

Task
Click box to Check
Get the ice you need for the drinks    
Pick up all the perishable and last-minute items you need  
Don't forget condiments like mayonnaise, mustard, relish & pickles, etc. Prepare your salads, and call to remind your designated salad makers. Or just pick up prepared salads at your grocery store.
Decorate party areas and arrange the tables and work area
Thaw any frozen items

I think you're doing pretty well so far. And now your planning is about to enter it's final phase:

Stage 4: The Day Of

Task
Click box to Check
In the morning set out the plates, utensils, and BBQ tools. Keep all the tools you'll need handy so you wont have to desert your post and run inside to get something. Accidents can happen when the grill is unattended.
If you're grilling any vegetables, now is a good time to prepare them and wrap in foil, if required. Remember that corn and potatoes should be on the grill about an hour before the meat
Set up a drinks table, and let everyone come over and help him/herself. I like to fill a large plastic tub with ice and canned drinks, which is extremely efficient in keeping people out of the house and out of the fridge.
When your friends start arriving, try and delegate serving and clearing up duties. You may also like to get some of the parents to arrange games for the kids - this keeps the kids occupied and out of your cooking area. To make it more interesting, why not have some small prizes handy for the winners? 
Set up a large trash container (or two) in your cooking area, with a large plastic sack inside. Encourage your guests to use them to dispose of their paper plates and cups. I also like to keep a couple of rolls of paper towels handy - always useful.

Well, how about that? Isn't it amazing what a little party planning checklist - and a little delegation - can do? Now you can take it easy and enjoy yourself as well.

>> Click here for printable version of the party planning checklist!