In D.I.Y.,

How To: Host an Outdoor Movie Night (in your own backyard)

Being 7 months pregnant, my prime idea of a birthday party revolved less around nightlife options, and more around friends and food (#sorrynotsorry)!

I love going to outdoor movies [see my post here on how to do it right], but didn’t love the lineup or locations featured on my birthday weekend.  Obvi, that meant one thing: DIY time.

Thankfully I have a super-handy husband, who fashioned a movie screen out of some PVC pipe and a roll-down window shade from Home Depot!  This is such a great way to go, and made for some amazing picture quality.  Plus, it was waaaaay cheaper than renting or buying a screen ($30, compared to >$130!).

We borrowed a projector from a friend, and a portable amp/speaker from my parents, which was pretty clutch.  Ask around — you may be surprised by who has these items!

IMG_4214 IMG_4217 IMG_4234

Here are some of the fun details…

Popcorn Bar [with adorable paper popcorn bags I got from The Dollar Spot at Target!]


Wine/Beverage Station [this is the perfect occasion to break into some boxed wine, and everyone said it was delicious!  Pick some up at your local Trader Joe’s — trust us, it’s waaaay better than Franzia!]


Movie Theater Candy [grab it from the Dollar Store!]


S’Mores Mix [1 box Golden Grahams, 1 bag mini marshmallows, 1 bag chocolate chunks — mix and serve!]


This was a hit!

… and last, but not least, The Princess Bride! [which was the top film the year I was born]


We also paused the movie at a good spot, and my husband brought out homemade chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches for everyone!

These were easy to prepare ahead: bake or buy chocolate chip cookies, sandwich some vanilla ice cream in the middle, and keep in a 9×13 pan (covered in plastic wrap) in the freezer until ready to serve.

Tips for success:

  • Do a practice run with your equipment at least 2 days before the party, to make sure everything works and people can hear/see the movie!
  • Ask guests to bring sweatshirts, blankets, and lawn chairs [but have a few extra, just in case]
  • Plan for your party to begin about 2 hours before sunset, so there is ample time to hang out, BBQ, etc. before the movie starts!


Have you ever hosted an outdoor movie party?  What were your favorite tips and tricks?  Let us know in the comments below!

xx, Nicole {LL805}

Share Tweet Pin It +1

You may also like

Carry-On Necessities {Airplane Kit DIY}

Posted on April 12, 2016

805 Summer Bucket List

Posted on June 30, 2014

Previous PostFive Friday Faves {This Week's Edition}
Next PostFive Friday Faves {Memorial Day Weekend Edition}


  1. Mary Kay
    2 years ago

    This was so awesome, and such a great idea to do with kids too! Just throw on a Disney movie, ditch the wine, and you are good to go!!

    1. Nicole
      2 years ago

      orrr… keep the wine for the adults 😉


Leave a Reply

Shop local products now! Sign up as a vendor here! Dismiss