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Entertaining at Home this Summer

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Many of us enjoy opening our homes to others over the summer to celebrate graduations, weddings or to host a charitable event.

Entertaining guests is a lot of fun and it is also a huge responsibility. Here are some preventative measures to use when planning an event at your home:

Serving Alcohol

Have a discussion with the bartender.  This could be a friend that agrees to handle the bartending duties or the bartender that you have hired.

The bartender must:

  • Never serve alcohol to minors.
  • Check for signs of intoxication when serving alcohol. If any signs are present, stop serving the guest and have them drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
  • Serve non-alcoholic beverages and coffee.

Keep phone numbers of ride-sharing services or taxi cab companies handy.  If a guest is intoxicated and drove to the party, help arrange for transportation to get them home, or have them spend the night.

Food Poisoning

  • Keep foods that require cooler temperature on top of a bed of ice to keep them cool and fresh throughout the party.
  • Keep hot foods on top of burners.
  • Make sure meats and poultry are thoroughly cooked to a safe temperature.

Fire Extinguishers

  • Keep a currently serviced fire extinguisher in the kitchen and in the backyard. This can help to cut the response time of the fire department should an accidental fire ignite while cooking, barbecuing or sitting around a fire pit.

Swimming pools and spas

  • The swimming pool and spa should be fenced and have a safety lock at the entrance to protect children and adults from falling in and possibly drown.
  • If the area is not fenced consider hiring a life guard or have an adult on duty to monitor the area.

Outdoor lighting

  • Check all light bulbs before the event begins.
  • If there is not enough lighting install outdoor light strings or temporary lighting. This may help to avoid trip and fall hazards.


  • Prior to your event always check the stability of your deck, if there are any loose areas have it fixed by a licensed contractor. This will help to prevent someone from falling or tripping or risking a deck collapse.