How to Plan the Best 4th of July Party

Posted in Holidays

We’re halfway into June, folks, and that means that the Fourth of July is just around the corner. This year, July fourth falls on a Wednesday, so many people are planning to attend parties either the weekend before the holiday, the weekend after the holiday, or both. The calendar doesn’t often provide us with such great opportunities for double-celebrations, so this is definitely something that we’d like to take advantage of!

If you’ve been bitten by the hosting bug and would like to throw a party instead of simply attending one, here are a few tips to get you started:

Backyard Games

In a recent post about backyard graduation fiestas, we discussed the kinds of games that are perfect for outdoor parties. Our top suggestions were piñatas filled with small trinkets (including glow sticks, whistles, and stickers or temporary tattoos) and candy, Giant Jenga, cornhole, and horseshoes. Water balloon dodgeball can also be a fun way to cool off during the heat of the early evening, though it may be best to save that pastime for parties in which guests are wearing swimsuits. Lakeside bash, anyone?

Let’s talk about firecrackers, too. Yes, it’s very popular to get a stack of miniature explosives to “play with” in the evening on July fourth, especially if you’ll be partying in a place where professional fireworks displays aren’t readily visible. However, please only do this if (1) firecrackers are legal in your city/county, and (2) you understand how dangerous firecrackers can be and you’re planning to behave responsibly with them. Have fun at your party, but not so much fun that someone winds up in the hospital!

Party Food

Hamburgers and hotdogs are standard fares for Fourth of July. They’re so common, in fact, that we’d actually recommend thinking outside the box and not serving these entrées at your event. If you think that sounds like culinary blasphemy, just hear us out:

Fajitas are great options for outdoor parties because the meat and veggies lend themselves very well to grilling, and they can be “dressed” to each individual’s unique tastes. While the grownups enjoy savory fajitas loaded with peppers and onions, younger guests can smother theirs in sour cream and cheese. Set up bowls of fajita ingredients buffet-style, and you’ll have a snack system that everyone can enjoy. Chips with salsa, queso, and guacamole are a creative alternative to plain potato chips, as well.

Not confident in your fajita-preparation abilities? Unsure of how much food you need for a specific number of guests? Concerned about the logistics of getting everyone fed while you tend to your hosting duties? Call your local Mattito’s restaurant and arrange for catering! Our fajitas can’t be beaten, and if you’ll provide the venue, we’ll be happy to provide every other aspect of the meal.


The #1 rule of outdoor parties is that you must stay hydrated. Doing so is a matter of safety! If you’re having your party at a public park, lake, or another open-air venue, there might be water fountains nearby, but they really shouldn’t be your “Plan A.” Instead, provide your guests with individual water bottles from an ice-filled chest or a few large water jugs and enough cups to go around. Adding a selection of fruit juice, lemonade, and soda will offer some much-appreciated variety to the mix.

Now, as far as the “stronger stuff” goes, we have to start with our standard warning about not serving alcohol to minors and not allowing guests to drive home if they’re clearly intoxicated. If you can follow both of those rules, then let the good times flow! Everyday canned or bottled beer and wine coolers are pretty festive, but if you want to take things to the next level, Mexican beer and margaritas (either standard or “deluxe”) are sure to impress. Recipes for margarita Jell-O shots are easy enough to find online, and in our opinion, they work as both an alcoholic beverage and a dessert!

We hope that all of our readers have a great Fourth of July! Have fun, be safe, and enjoy celebrating our freedoms with your family and friends.

And one more thing: with most Fourth of July events happening on the weekend before or after the holiday proper, a lot of people aren’t quite sure what they’ll do on the actual evening of July fourth. We’d like to take a moment to remind you that Mattito’s offers Happy Hour specials every weekday from 3 pm to 6 pm, and we’ll definitely be open for dinner services on that day. Come and join us for a beverage, a snack, or a full-blown meal—we’d love to have you over!