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How to Plan a Picnic in 2023: Expert Tips and Tricks

Last updated: February 20, 2023 Hosting a picnic is a fantastic way to bring friends together and enjoy the beauty of nature. Whether you're celebrating a special occasion or simply want to spend quality time...

Last updated: February 20, 2023

Hosting a picnic is a fantastic way to bring friends together and enjoy the beauty of nature. Whether you're celebrating a special occasion or simply want to spend quality time with loved ones, planning a picnic requires careful consideration. In this article, we'll explore some expert tips and tricks to help you organize a memorable picnic in 2023.

Picnic Planning Tips

Planning a successful picnic involves attention to detail and thoughtful preparation. Here are some essential tips that can make a significant difference:

  • Send more reminder messages: Ensure that your guests are well-informed and excited about the picnic by sending timely reminders.

  • Use name tags: Although it may initially seem unnecessary, name tags can actually facilitate social interaction and help guests feel more comfortable.

  • Do a round of icebreakers: Kick-start conversations by organizing a fun icebreaker activity. This will encourage guests to mingle and get to know each other.

  • Be crystal clear about the location: Specify the exact picnic spot to avoid any confusion or delays. Consider using a shiny balloon to make it easier for guests to locate the gathering area.

Now, let's delve into each of these tips in more detail.

Selecting a Picnic Location

Choosing the perfect location is vital for a successful picnic. Opt for a central spot that is easily accessible to all attendees. Before finalizing the venue, visit the area yourself and imagine approaching it as a guest would. Ensure that the picnic area is easy to find, accessible by public transportation or with ample parking, and has a clear pathway to the meeting spot. Additionally, consider both sun and shade options for seating, as this provides a comfortable mix for guests.

Deciding on a Date and Time

Picnics typically take place on weekends or holidays. Saturdays and Sundays are popular choices for hosting picnics, allowing guests to relax and enjoy without the restrictions of work or school. Based on experience, a start time of 2 PM is generally optimal for a picnic. It's also advisable to set both a start and end time to keep the event well-organized and encourage punctuality among guests. A duration of 2 to 3 hours is typically suitable for a picnic.

How to Invite People

Once you have finalized the location, date, and time, it's time to invite your friends to join your picnic. Providing clear and comprehensive information is crucial. Be sure to include the exact date, time, and location in your invitation. Consider using a double opt-in approach to ensure accurate RSVPs. This means asking your guests to confirm their attendance after receiving the initial invitation. Now, let's take a look at an example of how one picnic planner, Sydney Liu, invited his friends to a recent picnic.

Meet Sydney, the New Picnic Planner

Sydney Liu, the founder of Commaful, a software company based in California, had an idea to host a picnic for his friends while visiting New York City. He texted numerous people, set up an RSVP page, and patiently waited for the event to unfold. Eventually, he crossed paths with Nick Gray, an experienced party planner, who provided valuable insights to make Sydney's picnic a success.

Tips and Tricks to Plan a Picnic

Here are some key tips and tricks that Sydney learned from his experience planning his first picnic meetup:

  • Pick a spot ahead of time: Avoid the stress of trying to find a suitable spot on the day of the picnic. Plan ahead and choose a location in advance.

  • Attach a picture of the map: Share a picture of the map with the specific meeting spot circled. This visual aid makes it easy for your guests to find the location in a large park.

  • Use a shiny balloon: Place a shiny balloon in a visible area where the sun can reflect off it. This will serve as an excellent marker to guide people to your picnic spot.

  • Name tags are still useful: Despite initial reservations, name tags can facilitate introductions and make it easier for guests to identify each other.

  • Icebreakers are effective: Engage your guests with a quick icebreaker activity. It creates an opportunity for connections to form and sparks interesting conversations.

  • Offer to introduce guests: After the event, reach out to guests who didn't have a chance to exchange contact information. Facilitating introductions helps build connections among attendees.

  • Consider using Instacart: If you're hosting a picnic in a busy city, using a grocery delivery service like Instacart can save time and effort. Plan ahead and provide alternatives in case of any stock shortages.

  • Be prepared for guests arriving late: Picnics often have a relaxed timeline, and guests may show up at different times. Anticipate late arrivals and consider setting an end time to manage expectations.

  • Make seating arrangements optional: While some guests prefer to sit, others may prefer standing and mingling. Provide blankets or sheets for those who wish to sit, but don't feel obligated to provide seating for everyone.

Sydney's Picnic Invitations

To invite his friends, Sydney created an RSVP page and sent out a text message. He used a platform called Partiful for this purpose. While Partiful worked well for Sydney, it's worth noting that alternative platforms like Mixily can offer more flexibility by allowing you to collect RSVPs and communicate with guests via email.

Sharing the Location

Sharing the exact picnic location is crucial, especially in larger parks like Central Park in New York City. By providing a clear map or screenshot of the location, you can ensure that your guests can easily find you. Consider adding arrows or annotations on the image to provide precise directions. This attention to detail will make a big difference in guiding your guests to the right spot.

Drinks and Snacks

When it comes to refreshments, it's essential to strike a balance between light and refreshing options. Finger fruits such as blueberries, watermelon slices, and sliced apples are ideal for warm weather picnics. Salty snacks like cocktail nuts, potato chips, and tortilla chips are also crowd-pleasers. Don't forget to bring ample water along with other beverage options like white wine or rose (where permitted) and seltzer or diet soda.

Standing versus Sitting

Opting for a standing picnic can encourage guests to socialize and interact with one another. Standing allows for more flexibility and movement, fostering a lively and dynamic atmosphere. While seating options can be provided, keep in mind that sitting for too long may discourage guests from mingling and meeting new people.

Group Photo

Capture the memories of your picnic by taking a group photo. The group photo serves as a memento and can be shared on social media or used for future event invitations. Take the opportunity to gather everyone together and create a lasting visual representation of the fun and connections made at the picnic.


Planning a picnic involves careful attention to detail and thoughtful consideration for your guests. By following the expert tips and tricks outlined in this article, you can ensure a successful and enjoyable picnic experience. Remember, a little planning and preparation can go a long way in creating lasting memories and forging meaningful connections. So go ahead, organize your perfect picnic and bring your friends together for a day of outdoor fun!