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Weather-proofing your Big Lunch

What if it rains (or really, really shines) on your parade?

Us Brits love to talk about the weather. It’s no surprise when it changes so much, and so quickly! That unpredictability isn’t ideal though when you’re trying to plan an outdoor event – even organising a barbeque can be tricky.

But with a bit of creativity and planning, your outdoor event can be a great success – come rain or shine. 

Here are our top tips for weatherproofing your event.


1) Think about shelter

Whether it’s raining or sunny, arranging some sort of shelter will help the day become a sure success. Here are some ideas for sheltering whatever the weather: 

  • Find a covering – Gazebo / arch / arbour / pergola / marquee / tent – if you haven’t got one, could you ask a neighbour or friend? Many people will have this equipment gathering dust in their shed
  • Open a garage! With the door wide open and a few deckchairs you can appreciate the weather from inside – even if it’s pouring down!
  • Set up your Big Lunch beneath the shade of a tree or structure.
  • Arrange for an alternative indoor space in advance. If there is a clubhouse / community hall / church nearby, it could be a backup option if the weather is really bad! They’re often very cost-effective to hire or even free, especially if you offer to do a bit of gardening or an odd job in return! 


2) Gather useful items 

There are some additional things you could buy/beg/borrow to help prepare, too. 

  • Umbrellas 
  • Blankets or scarves 
  • Suncream
  • Waterproof ponchos 
  • Handheld fans 
  • Wind breakers 
  • Bug repellent spray  
  • Weights – to hold down anything likely to fly away! Heavy books are always useful. 


3) Protect food

It would be terrible if something happened to all that gorgeous food! Here are some tips for keeping it fresh and safe to eat… 

  • Bring food in tupperware containers – you can pop the lid back on when you have finished serving, and it’ll protect the food from flies or wasps.
  • Use reusable food wraps or tin foil – again, to cover up any food and keep it fresh. Tin foil can also be recycled – wash off any food if it is dirty, and pop into the recycle bin.
  • Source a coolbox – these are ideal to help keep food and drinks cold, but they’re also handy to keep food dry and secure.
  • Think about plastic boxes or weatherproof storage – ensure weather resistance and could also be a secure shelter for people’s belongings. 


4) Keep your guests hydrated and happy

  • If it’s very hot, make sure there’s a steady supply of fresh drinking water to ensure your guests stay hydrated, especially in hot weather… and don’t forget to bring bowls of water for any doggie guests, too!

  • If it’s cold, wet or windy, consider a hot water urn or asking someone to do a few kettle runs to serve hot drinks for your guests. It’s amazing what a hot cuppa to keep you warm on a chilly day.

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