How to Use Your Backyard to Meet New Families This Summer


Since moving to a new town and a new house a few months ago, my family and I have been struggling a bit to find my group of friends. It’s hard to establish a quality circle of friends in a new place, and doubly hard when you work from home and you have a new baby. I am determined to make some new friends this summer, though, and I plan on doing so by making our backyard the place to be. Hopefully, this will bring us closer to our neighbors and even bring in some new friends from outside the ‘hood.

If you’re looking to make your backyard entertainment-central as well, here are four backyard must-haves to keep the party going all summer long:

Provide Plenty of Seating and Shade

If you want to make your backyard a destination, the biggest hurdle is ample seating and shade. I’ll be setting up a new patio table and umbrella this summer, plus a few other seating areas around the yard. Some Adirondack chairs and a fire pit are a must. Plus, I am hanging a tree swing I made to keep the kiddos entertained (get the DIY tree swing tutorial here).

Host a Happy Hour on a Set Date Every Month

I always like keeping a well stocked bar, and I am going to continue that tradition by having an open invitation to a monthly happy hour at my place. Pick a day, like the third Friday of every month, and let all of your acquaintances know that they are welcome to stop by. Make a batch cocktail and buy a few six packs, and you should be good to go. Chances are your friends will bring some booze of their own, too.

Set Up Yard Games Galore

I’ve amassed quite the collection of yard games now, and they are a great way to have fun while at home with friends. There’s no need to spend a bunch of money on them either; a lot of great yard games can be made yourself, like backyard ring toss, ladder golf, and corn hole. Don’t forget other old favorites like croquet and bocce ball. Playing games with friends is a great way to solidify bonds and make some lasting friendships.

Host a Backyard Movie Night

I’ve always dreamed of setting up a backyard movie theater, and this year I’m finally going to do it. It helps to (at long last) have a backyard big enough to do so. I’m going to set up a screen and a projector and put on a showing of Frozen, which should bring all of the neighborhood kids a running, with their parents in tow. Immediate new friends!

Do a few of these things, and suddenly your yard is going to become the destination for whenever anyone in the neighborhood wants to have a good time. Hopefully I’ll make some new friends in the process, and we can all take turns throwing dinner parties and backyard shindigs.

More Outdoor Summer Activities: