Throw A Patriotic Backyard Cookout

August 31, 2019  |  Celebrations  |  Written by
The Dollarista

Summer Patriotic PartyMy family and I are big party-goers so, no matter the season or occasion we all gather together hosting events and invite our friends along too! Towards the end of summer our extended family comes to town, so we get together and host a party. However, this summer I decided to go all out with a patriotic-themed bash!

I headed to my local Dollar Tree and was able to stock up on supplies for the party. I got everything from party supplies and decorations to food and drinks, all for $1 each. It was both easy and affordable, not to mention I only had to make one stop!

Ready to see how I did it all? I’ve listed the supplies and instructions for each craft individually below so, follow along step-by-step!

Firecracker Décor

  • Blue Pool Noodles
  • Patriotic Balloon Weights
  • Patriotic Decorative Mesh
  • Tacky Glue®
  • ScissorsSummer Patriotic Party

These firecracker decorations were so simple to make and added so much pizazz to my table! I started by cutting my blue pool noodle to be the length needed to cover the balloon weight, while still leaving the streamer part of the top of the balloon weight exposed. Some of my balloon weights had decorative wires on them that I cut off with my scissors and set aside for later. I then inserted the balloon weight through the pool noodle, pulling the streamer part through the top of the noodle. For one of my noodles, I wrapped the decorative mesh around the length of the noodle and secured with it Tacky Glue®. For the other two noodles, I inserted some of the decorative wires into the pool noodle foam.

Summer Patriotic Party

Bandana Wrapped Cutlery Sets

  • Red and Blue Bandanas (Quantity will depend on how many sets you want to make; I used 2 bandanas of each color to make 16 silverware sets)
  • Plastic Cutlery
  • Glass Jar
  • Twine
  • ScissorsSummer Patriotic Party

Using my scissors, I cut each of my bandanas into four even squares. Once the squares were cut, the 2 red bandanas and 2 blue bandanas I had purchased made a total of 16 bandana napkins. I folded the bandana napkins into triangles and then wrapped a plastic fork, spoon, and knife set with each napkin and secured them with pieces of twine. I then filled the jar with my cutlery sets.

Summer Patriotic PartySummer Patriotic Party

Patriotic Table Runner

  • Burlap Table Runner (I already had one from a previous party)
  • 3 Red Bandanas
  • 3 Blue Bandanas
  • Tacky Glue®
  • ScissorsSummer Patriotic Party

I folded each bandana into a square so that each bandana had 4 layers of fabric. Using a star pattern that I had from a previous project, I traced it onto the top layer of fabric. I then cut out the star pattern and had 4 stars per bandana. I repeated this process until I had cut stars for all of the bandanas. I laid out my burlap table runner and arranged the stars in the pattern I wanted and used Tacky Glue® to adhere each star to the table runner.

Summer Patriotic PartySummer Patriotic Party

Lollipop Centerpiece

  • Lollipops with Red and Blue Wrappers
  • Glass Jar
  • Decorative Shredded Paper in WhiteSummer Patriotic Party

I filled the glass jar with the white shredded paper and arranged the red and blue lollipops in an alternating pattern in the mouth of the jar. This décor idea was by far the easiest and the lollipops were a huge hit with the kids!

Patriotic Candleholders

  • 4 Glass Jars
  • 4 Battery-Operated Tealights
  • 3 Bags of White Rice
  • 2, 1-gallon Size Storage Bags
  • Red and Blue Food ColoringSummer Patriotic Party

I emptied one bag of rice into a 1-gallon storage bag and repeated this process for a second bag of rice. I added red food coloring to one bag and blue food coloring to the other. I sealed the bags tightly and then shook each bag to distribute the food color throughout the rice. I added additional food coloring to each bag and repeated the shaking process until the rice was the color that I wanted. Once the rice was the color I wanted, I emptied each color of rice into its own small bowl.

Summer Patriotic Party

I then poured a small amount of red rice into each of the jars until it was about 1.5″ high, and repeated this process for the white rice and then the blue rice. I then set aside the leftover rice. Once my rice was layered in each jar, I added the battery-operated tealights. I waited to actually turn on the tealights until right before my guests arrived.

Summer Patriotic Party

Optional Tip: Adding 2-3 ounces of white vinegar to the rice and food coloring bags will help the rice to absorb the food coloring as you are distributing the food coloring throughout the rice.

Patriotic Flower Arrangement

  • Assorted Red, White and Blue Faux Flowers
  • Glass Vase
  • Scissors
  • Extra Red, White, and Blue Rice from the Patriotic Candleholders

Using the leftover red, white and blue rice from my Patriotic Candleholder project, I layered each color rice in the glass vase. I cut the stems of my faux flowers to the height of the glass vase and arranged the patriotic flower colors in an alternating pattern in the glass vase.

Summer Patriotic Party

Patriotic Chocolate Covered Pretzels

  • Pretzel Rods
  • White Chocolate Chips (Not Sold at Dollar Tree)
  • Blue Food Coloring
  • Microwave-Safe Bowls
  • Mixing Spoon
  • Patriotic Sprinkles
  • Plastic PlatterSummer Patriotic Party

I poured the white chocolate chips into a microwaveable safe container and microwaved on medium power in 30-second intervals, stirring in-between each interval. I placed the patriotic sprinkles in another bowl and set them aside. Once the chocolate was melted, I added the blue food coloring and quickly stirred it, being careful that the chocolate did not start to harden. I then coated the top ¾ of each pretzel rod with the melted chocolate and rolled each pretzel rod in the patriotic sprinkles. I set the completed rods onto the plastic platter. Once finished, I placed the platter in the refrigerator so the chocolate could set. Given the hot weather the day of my party, I put the pretzel rods out on the table just before my guests arrived.

Summer Patriotic Party

Rocket Hot Dogs

  • Package of Hot Dogs
  • Package of Crescent Roll Dough (Not Sold at Dollar Tree)
  • Block of Cheese (I used Colby Jack, but Cheddar would work too) (Not Sold at Dollar Tree)
  • Wooden Skewers
  • Metal Baking Sheet
  • Patriotic Cupcake Liners
  • 4 Squares of White Floral Foam
  • Plastic Patriotic Tablecover
  • Tacky Glue®
  • Clear Tape
  • ScissorsSummer Patriotic Party

While my oven heated to 375˚, I cut 1.5-inch squares of cheese and then sliced each square diagonally to make a triangle. I made one cheese triangle for each hot dog and then set the cheese triangles aside. I then put a wooden skewer through the length of each hot dog. I separated the crescent roll dough into triangles and wrapped each hot dog in a piece of crescent roll dough.

Summer Patriotic Party

I baked the crescent dogs until golden brown (about 12-15 minutes). While the crescent dogs were in the oven, I glued four squares of white florist foam together into a larger square using Tacky Glue®.

Summer Patriotic Party

I cut a piece of the plastic patriotic tablecover that was large enough to cover the entire large square of florist foam and secured the ends with clear tape.

Summer Patriotic Party

After the crescent dogs had cooled a bit, I stuck the end of each wooden skewer through an upside down patriotic cupcake liner and inserted the end through the tablecover into the florist foam, ensuring it was deep enough that the skewer would not fall over. Then, I topped the skewer with a triangle of cheese. I repeated this for each of my crescent dogs.  The rocket dogs were delicious and everyone loved their patriotic display!

Summer Patriotic Party

Assorted Patriotic Decorations

  • Patriotic Lanterns
  • Red Plastic Tablecover
  • Red Paper Cups
  • Blue Plastic PlatesSummer Patriotic Party

With the exception of the food, which I made the morning of the party, I made all of the decorations in advance of the party and set them aside. Just prior to the party starting, I covered my table with a red plastic tablecover and added my patriotic table runner on top. I hung the patriotic lanterns in the tree behind the table and turned the battery-operated lights inside them on right before my guests arrived. I arranged all of the crafts, food, paper cups and plastic plates on the table. My family and I had the best time celebrating summer and spending time together!

Looking for more patriotic ideas? Check out these berry patriotic star-spangled pies!

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