Dose of Good (Holiday) Fun: Ecotain for Memorial Day

With Memorial Day marking the official start of summer celebrations, here is a quick party template to help you ECOTAIN this holiday and throughout the season! [If you missed today’s Atlanta & Company segment showing these ideas on air – I’ll be posting it shortly.]

ECOVITE: Paperless Post [With numerous BBQ invite options a few clicks away, it’s an easy (and free) way to invite your friends and family to celebrate Memorial Day with you. I love their “Cook Out, Pig Out, Hang out Backyard BBQ” design which we’ve carried throughout the party concept starting with the framed pic of the invite with chalkboard tape. www.paperlesspost.com

CONSCIOUS CUISINE: Guests have a variety of pallets and dietary restrictions these days so offering an array of options at your holiday soiree is essential. There are also so many vegetarian, vegan, gluten free and non-beef/pork alternatives available. Veggie + turkey dogs with Holeman & Finch locally made hot dog buns are always a hit as are artisan chicken burgers with gluten free buns (all available at Whole Foods Market).  A staple favorite is Mac & Cheese and the best one in town is hands down the Kale Ale Mac and Cheese found at the Wrecking Bar Brewpub in Little Five Points. They kindly whipped up a fresh skillet for my segment which was a HIT with the entire crew at Atlanta & Co but also have shared their recipe which I will post separately. http://www.wreckingbarbrewpub.com/

I also think that no summertime celebration is complete without an assortment of tasty treats from King of Pops. They just celebrated five years of serving Atlanta the most delicious and original combination of pop flavors from Banana Puddin’, Blackberry Mojito and Blueberry Lemongrass to Key Lime Pie, Chocolate Sea Salt and Fig Orange Honey (and many many more)….pick  them up at Whole Foods, one of their cart stand locations around town, farmers market events or book their cart to come to you:  www.kingofpops.net.

ORGANIC LIBATIONS: Serving several beverage options for guests that can be doctored to meet their tastes is a fun way to keep everyone cool. A super easy recipe is for Organic Strawberry Lemonade Spritzers (with strawberry lemonade ice cubes)  – 1/3 organic lemonade, 1/3 strawberry lemonade and finish with either club soda/sparkling water. Of course, flavored ice cubes spruce up this cocktail even further – I really like Tovolo’s Ice Trays which come in red and blue as well as different cube sizes to mix it up. Add cut up strawberries with water and freeze then serve your Spritzers over the festive ice.

No BBQ is complete without a few great beer options especially when it’s from a local brewery. The Wrecking Bar Brewpub serves up more than ten of their special brews at a time with styles running the gamut from light to dark and hoppy to malty.  The two they brewed for Christine and I to try on the segment are “Just a Water Session IPA” + “Jemmy Stout” – featured above). For more on their brews, check them out at http://www.wreckingbarbrewpub.com/ or in person at their historic location at the Victor H. Kriegshaber House on Moreland Avenue in Little Five Points.

TABLE SETTINGS: I’ve become slightly obsessed with the Compostable lunch trays from ecoproducts.com. This is a perfect plateware option when you’re serving up a buffet of assorted eats. I also like to repurpose old containers into vessels for your compostable utensils – I save the red French Onion topping containers from the holidays since it’s the perfect size and hue for those red, white and blue occasions. http://www.ecoproducts.com/

Displaying IMG_1408 (2).jpg

ACCENTS: Take your ecovite theme to your table with a banner made with hemp string, cardboard pennants + chalkboard stickers. Create a fun activity for your guests with a polaroid camera, clothes pins and have them add their pics to the pennants.

INNOVATIVE LEAVE BEHINDS (party favors): Customize mason jars with fabric tape, aluminum stars and chalkboard hang tags with your guests’ name on them so they can use them at the party then take them home as a great memory of a fun kick off to Summer. The Ball Company has so many options to turn mason jars into fun drink containers, hanging votives and other easy and inexpensive treats for your guests to take home. Check them out at www.target.com.

Displaying IMG_1409 (2).jpg

NO WASTE BEHIND: Standard trash bins may leave your guests confused as to where to put their recyclables and compostables so I like to use alternative vessels that are a little more fun and unique – aluminum tubs or a recycled tire catch all is festive and easy for guests to spot.

Displaying IMG_1411 (2).jpg

So cook out, pig out, hang out in your backyard and BBQ this Memorial Day and all the weekends ahead this summer!

Happy Ecotaining!

Leave a Reply