Are you in the process of planning a big backyard bash for friends, family, and neighbors? Backyard parties provide an excellent way to entertain large groups of people -- most backyards can easily accommodate more guests than the typical living room. The basics of hosting a successful backyard bash are a little different from their indoor counterparts. Following are three strategies for creating a fun and memorable outdoor celebration. 

Don't Invite Fido and Fluffy

If you're like most people, you consider your furry friends to be a part of your family and want them to participate in fun activities along with everyone else. However, backyard events aren't always the best environments for pets. Many types of human food, for instance, can make dogs and cats ill, and some, such as chocolate, can even be fatal if enough is consumed. There is also the potential for pets to become overwhelmed simply because of all the people and activity, which may cause them to slip away from the property, exposing them to a variety of dangerous situations. It is better to leave them in a quiet room in your house with food, water, and their favorite toys and bedding for the duration of the party. 

Provide Portable Toilets 

Naturally, a good host isn't going to deny access to household bathrooms, but good hosts also realize that the bathrooms inside the home may not be adequate for a large number of guests. It's also best when hosting a backyard party to keep it confined to the backyard as much as possible -- after all, you can only play host in one place at a time, and most people would simply prefer not to have party guests free-ranging in their home. Providing portable toilets is a great way to ensure that the needs of guests are met in a timely fashion, and it prevents situations where long lines of guests are waiting for a turn at indoor facilities. A couple of discreetly placed portable toilets can help keep the party in the backyard where it belongs. Your local portable toilet company will be able to set them up on your party before the fun starts and pick them up after the festivities have ended. 

Portable toilets can be as posh or as basic as you like. For instance, you can opt for a restroom trailer, which comes equipped with lighting, flush toilets, and climate control. Individual porta-cabins are a less deluxe option that also offers flush toilets and a handwashing sink. Check out sites like and ask local portable toilet rental companies about what accommodations would best suit your backyard event. 

Set Up an All-Inclusive Outdoor Kitchen

If you don't already have an outdoor kitchen on your deck or patio, you should consider renting one from a local rental company. Preparing and serving food and beverages from an outdoor kitchen prevents a lot of back-and-forth from the home interior by both guests and the person responsible for manning the barbecue. Keep in mind that for safety's sake, you should never leave a barbecue unattended -- a small fridge full of everything you need as well as a supply of cooking utensils will help keep you in one place. You should also have a way for beverages to remain cold, ample trash cans, and plenty of tables and chairs so that guests can comfortably relax while enjoying the food and beverages. If you plan on keeping the festivities going after the sun goes down, you'll needs some form of outdoor lighting and perhaps even a heat source -- a fire pit works great for keeping people warm under the stars, and you can hang outdoor lanterns from trees for extra illumination.