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How to Host an Outdoor Holiday Dinner

The holidays are a magical time of year, and having friends and family over is a great way to celebrate. Hosting a holiday dinner outdoors can be beautiful (and comfortable) with a little bit of preparation.

Make It Warm and Cozy

No one wants to be cold while eating, nor do you want your teeth chattering during a  conversation. Get the area set up with key things to keep everyone warm. 

Space Heaters

Space heaters can go a long way in providing warmth, but be careful not to set them in the form of walking paths, so no one gets hurt. Check out the space size it can heat and decide which one will be best for your area. There are also outdoor space heaters designed for outdoor spaces. 

A portable fire pit is a nice option if it is not wood burning. Having a fire that can be contained and controlled is important with an overhead awning for fire safety.


Have a pretty set-up at the table with blankets hung over each chair for a visually pleasing area and a functional one for everyone to have a blanket to curl up in. 

Depending on the chairs or style of seating, you could also lay pillows out for guests to use. If you’re using a table low to the ground, large throw pillows will make an excellent option for comfortable seating. 

Festive Lighting

The holidays are meant to celebrate under Christmas lights, and there’s something so elegant about hanging lights to create a cozy and picture-perfect environment. With the sun going down early this time of year, hanging lights will help with having good lighting while outdoors. 

Everyone loves to take pictures to post on social media or to remember the holiday season. You can design a beautiful backdrop with a few simple throw pillows, blankets, and pendant lights for guests to take their pictures. 

Dine Under Cover

Weather can be so unpredictable, but you can be prepared with an awning to host under. If the awning you have does not have siding, hang some white or Christmas-colored drapes to add ambiance as well as shelter. A covering is also helpful for blocking any wind or keeping the heat inside. 

Serve It Hot

Cold soup is not a tasty item on the menu, and with all of the work you have put in, you don’t want everyone to remember how cold the food was. Invest in chafing dishes that will keep the food warm. They will also provide a little extra heat in the outdoor area.

Keep in mind where the flame is to avoid the drapes or tiny fingers from getting into the fire. 

Plan Ahead

One way to cut down on foot traffic in and out of the house and extra messes is by setting up outside ahead of time. Have serving dishes, utensils, plates, and anything else you may need outside in an outdoor kitchen so that everything is ready to go. 

Once the leg work is done, sit back and enjoy the feast with the ones you love.