How to Host an Outdoor Thanksgiving Dinner

How to Host an Outdoor Thanksgiving Dinner

Thinking of hosting Thanksgiving outdoors this year? Make sure to prepare in the following ways.

Thanksgiving is coming sooner than one realizes. If you are hosting Thanksgiving this year, there’s no reason not to take advantage of the last of the season’s crisp outdoor weather. While the colors last on the trees, take some time to see how you can prepare an outstanding outdoor Thanksgiving this year.

Have a Plan B

Let’s say you’re gung-ho about having an outdoor Thanksgiving feast this year. As Maryland weather is unpredictable, one should always have a plan B for outdoor events. It may be less difficult to continue the fellowship outside if you already have an awning, pagoda, or under-deck space.

Make Room

Make sure there is enough space to host all your guests. Can you successfully host everyone on one outdoor platform like the deck or patio? If not, you might want to have two or more groups, either indoors or outdoors.

Tables & Chairs

Will your outdoor dining set accommodate everyone? Gather long folding tables and proper folding chairs for easy setup, stability, and easy cleaning.

Spruce Up the Landscape

You’ll want to take care of the last of your fall cleanup chores before this time, unless some leaves still linger on the branches. If you are hosting on your backyard deck, be sure to clean it and seal it if necessary. Check for damage to the structure to ensure safety.

Keep the Food Warm

Once the fundamentals are laid out, it’s time to plan for the meal. In the chilly weather, it might be a challenge to keep the food warm. Perhaps you’ll be cooking on the grill, or maybe you’ll go buffet style and serve the dishes indoors.

Keep All Warm

Make sure to keep warm, too! While everyone can easily wear their jackets while they eat, you can also make the conditions a little more comfortable with outdoor space heaters. Be sure to follow safety precautions when using them.


In November, the sun sets at around 5 PM, so beware of accidentally hosting your dinner in the dark. If you are set on dinner, you can install outdoor lighting to illuminate the setting. Otherwise, plan for lunch or a late lunch.


Decorating your outdoor living space for Thanksgiving is the icing on the cake. After all the preparations, feel free to throw in your festive flair.

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