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Movie Watching Under the Stars

Written by: Celia Chen

Warm summer nights are perfect for outdoor entertaining so why not host a movie night under the stars? Transforming your backyard, terrace or roofdeck into a theater is as simple as renting a projector, bringing out some sheets and pillows and creating a menu of savory snacks and delicious cocktails.

SIMPLY BETTER COCKTAILS
Start with a cocktail hour before your movie while the sun is still going down. Take your inspiration from the fruit of the season and serve Blueberry Daiquiris made with Stirrings Blueberry Mixer and Stirrings Margarita Mixer with a dash of rum.

For each seating or lounging area, fill a galvanized bin with ice and an assortment of sodas such as Pink Grapefruit, Tart Cranberry and Ginger Ale so guests don’t have to get up during the movie to refresh the glasses.

SIMPLY BETTER FOOD
Hosting an outdoor movie night means designing a relaxed menu with casual recipes and lots of different snacks. Think about food that is portable and easy to eat since guests will be lounging on pillows and spread out across your party.
We suggest a menu of Spiced Yogurt Chicken Kabobs and Pesto Pasta Salad with Pine Nuts. Both can be served at room temperature and are easy transported from buffet table to seating area.
Create a gourmet concession stand so guests to help themselves to bags of seasoned popcorn, spiced nuts and an assortment of candy including maltballs, chocolate covered raisins, gummy bears and more. Set out paper or cellophane bags for them to fill up with their desired goodies. For a healthier option, create crudité samplers by placing some onion dip in the bottom of a glass and filling with carrot and celery sticks.

SIMPLY BETTER TIMES
The key to setting up an outdoor movie theater is to create casual areas for guests to lounge and mingle. Whether on the grass or your back terrace, make sure your guests are comfortable by laying out sheets with assorted pillows or even plush beach towels. For those that need a bit more support, use beach chairs to make a seated area behind those that are lying down so you don’t block their view.
Small end tables or overturned wooden crates provide just enough table space to put down glasses and small plates of snacks. Large serving trays or breakfast trays with legs work perfectly for those lounging on the grass.
For the best quality picture, rent a projector and screen. Remember that you need the sun to set first before you can show the movie so time your event accordingly.

A seasoned event planner and entertaining expert, Celia Chen is the Founder and Editorial Director of Notes on a Party, an online magazine about entertaining that celebrates Events from the Inside Out™. For more inspiration, ideas and tips on party planning, visit www.notesonaparty.com

©2011 Diageo, Norwalk, CT. Please Drink Responsibly.

A combination of wild mountain blueberries and cane sugar, our Wild Blueberry Martini is so yummy it can even be served as dessert: Blueberry Martini Cobbler. Ingredients 3 oz Stirrings® Simple Wild Blueberry Martini Cocktail Mixer 1.5 oz Smirnoff® Vodka Garnish: lime wedge Directions In a cocktail shaker combine Stirrings® Simple Wild Blueberry Martini Cocktail Mixer, vodka and plenty of ice. Cover and shake vigorously.  Strain into a martini glass and garnish with a lime wedge.

A Highlight of the Summer Season

Ingredients
1.5 oz Stirrings® Simple Lemon Drop Martini Cocktail Mixer
1.5 oz Smirnoff® Vodka
Club Soda

Directions
Combine ingredients in a tall glass and stir.

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