Be the perfect host this summer

With the brightest and warmest time of the year still to come, now is a great time to brush up on your hosting skills.

Any summer weekend (especially a long one) provides the perfect opportunity to get together with friends and family. Follow these tips to be a spectacular host:

• Most guests expect the usual when attending a summer get-together — a barbecue, serving stations and seating/standing options.

Why not switch things up a little and make your party a picnic? Set up blankets and pillows on the ground and provide snacks in traditional picnic-style baskets. Your guests will love the throwback, rustic feel we all associate with childhood picnic trips.

• No weekend get-together is complete without pairing meals and snacks with a refreshing drink. For a fun beverage, create a custom iced tea. Try using Nestlé GoodHost Iced Tea, which has gone back to the oringal recipe and is made with real tea leaves and natural flavours.

• Summer is a nostalgic time for many, reminding us of our childhood vacations spent playing outside, far away from school. Set up some fun and creative outdoor games for your guests to enjoy that will transport them back to the good ol’ days. Limbo, an obstacle course, races and pin the tail on the donkey are all great options.

• Bring a little excitement to regular barbecue fare by providing visually appealing customization stations with wide selections of cheese, veggies and condiments. Think aged cheddar, feta, spicy pickles, horseradish, honey mustard and even potato chips. Be sure to offer vegetarian options, and don’t skip on the salads.