11 Easy Tips to Host a Fun Memorial Day Party in 2024

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Are you hosting a party this year for Memorial Day and searching for an easy way to plan it all? If so, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve got you covered with simple Memorial Day party ideas to start your summer holidays off right.

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Table of Contents

Memorial Day is a special holiday that allows us to honor and remember the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives for our country.

It is a time to come together on the last Monday of May with family and friends to pay tribute to these heroes while also celebrating the unofficial start of summer. 

And what better way to commemorate this meaningful day than by hosting a Memorial Day party at your home?

Memorial Day Party

Whether you’re planning a small backyard gathering to enjoy the warmer weather or a larger summer party, there are plenty of ways to make this holiday one to remember.

From the guest list to the Memorial Day party decor ideas to delicious food and yummy recipes to the most popular yard games, we’ll cover an excellent way to help you plan the perfect Memorial Day party. 

So, let’s get into some of the best things to make your Memorial Day party a memorable and meaningful experience for all.

11 Easy Tips to Host a Fun Memorial Day Party 1

1. Choose a Memorial Day Celebration Party Theme

When planning a Memorial Day celebration, selecting a party theme is the first step.

One of the popular choices is a patriotic theme to honor and celebrate the sacrifices made by the brave servicemen and women. 

Memorial Day Party Theme Ideas

Decorating with the colors of the American flag is a great way to show your patriotic side of the United States while honoring a friend or family member who has served or currently serving.

2. Grab Great Memorial Day Decorations

When hosting a Memorial Day party, finding the perfect decorations is key to creating an inviting and patriotic atmosphere.

One of the favorite ways to decorate for the holiday weekend is to feature red, white, and blue banners, different shades of patriotic blue balloons, and red, white, and blue colors on streamers backdrop.

Memorial Day Party Decorations

Adding American flags to your table settings and centerpieces is a great idea to honor the reason for the day.

You can also feature patriotic-themed lawn signs or pathway markers so party guests find your indoor or outdoor venue easily.

In addition, some fun ideas are to grab patriotic plates, cups, and tablecloths to really make your party look festive.

3. Elevate Your Memorial Day Party with Music

The right selection of easy listening music can be the best part of your Memorial Day party.

From a carefully curated playlist to hiring a live band to a DJ, you’ll love these fun music ideas.

Memorial Day Party Music Ideas

For some festive entertainment options add a dance floor to your venue, or feature soothing background music in the dining area, and upbeat tunes by your pool.

By choosing the right music, you can create a memorable atmosphere that enhances the overall enjoyment of your Memorial Day celebration for all guests.

4. Pick a Drink Menu for the Perfect Memorial Day Party

When planning the beverage menu for your Memorial Day party, it’s important to offer a wide variety of drinks.

Memorial Day Party Drink Ideas

Here’s a list of some unique alcoholic beverages to serve:

Margarita: A classic favorite made with tequila, triple sec, lime juice, and simple syrup, served over ice with a salted rim.

Mojito: Refreshing and minty, made with white rum, fresh mint leaves, lime juice, sugar, and soda water, served over ice.

Pina Colada: Transport your guests to a tropical paradise with this creamy blend of rum, coconut cream, and pineapple juice, served over crushed ice.

Gin and Tonic: Simple yet sophisticated, made with gin, tonic water, and a splash of lime juice, served over ice with a lime wedge.

Paloma: A refreshing Mexican cocktail made with tequila, grapefruit soda, lime juice, and a pinch of salt, served over ice with a grapefruit wedge.

Sangria: A fruity and festive option, made with red or white wine, fresh fruit, brandy, and a splash of soda water, served over ice.

Moscow Mule: A zesty and tangy drink made with vodka, ginger beer, and lime juice, served over ice in a copper mug.

Beer Margarita (Michelada): A unique twist on the classic margarita, made with beer, lime juice, hot sauce, and a salted rim, served over ice.

Daiquiri: A timeless cocktail made with rum, lime juice, and simple syrup, served straight up or over ice.

Blueberry Mojito: Add a fruity twist to the traditional blue cocktail mojito by muddling fresh blueberries with mint leaves, rum, lime juice, and simple syrup, served over ice.

Here are some non-alcoholic beverage options for your party as well:

Virgin Mojito: All the minty freshness of a traditional mojito without the alcohol. Simply muddle fresh mint leaves with lime juice and sugar, top with soda water, and serve over ice.

Fruit Punch: A classic crowd-pleaser made with a mix of fruit juices such as orange, pineapple, and cranberry, chilled and served over ice with fresh fruit garnish.

Lemonade: A timeless favorite, freshly squeezed lemon juice mixed with water and sugar, served over ice with a lemon slice.

Iced Tea: Brew your favorite tea (black, green, or herbal) and chill it, then serve over ice with lemon slices or mint leaves for garnish.

Virgin piña coladas: Blend together coconut cream, pineapple juice, and ice until smooth, then serve in a chilled glass garnished with a pineapple wedge and a cherry.

Watermelon Agua Fresca: Puree fresh watermelon chunks with a bit of water, sugar, and lime juice, then strain and serve over ice with a lime wedge.

Cucumber Mint Cooler: Blend cucumber slices, mint leaves, lime juice, and a bit of honey with water until smooth, then strain and serve over ice with a cucumber slice and mint sprig.

Sparkling Cranberry Spritzer: Mix cranberry juice with sparkling water or club soda, serve over ice with a splash of lime juice and fresh cranberries for garnish.

Margarita: Blend together lime juice, orange juice, agave syrup, and ice until smooth, then rim the glass with salt and serve with a lime wedge.

Blue Raspberry Drink Sparkler: Muddle mixed berries (such as strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries) with a bit of lemon juice and simple syrup, then top with sparkling water and serve over ice with a berry skewer.

If a cocktail menu isn’t on your party list, you can also feature wines, beers, white grape juice, soda, iced tea, and coffee.

Whatever drinks you decide to include, make sure they are easily accessible for a good time for your guests.

5. Choose Memorial Day Event Appetizers

When it comes to selecting your Memorial Day party appetizer menu, choose options that are both delicious and fitting for the occasion.

Memorial Day Party Appetizers

Caprese Skewers: Cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella balls, and basil leaves threaded onto skewers, drizzled with balsamic glaze and olive oil, and sprinkled with salt and pepper.

Guacamole and Chips: Creamy avocado mashed with lime juice, diced tomatoes, onions, jalapeños, cilantro, and salt, served with crispy tortilla chips.

BBQ Chicken Sliders: Mini slider buns filled with shredded BBQ chicken, topped with coleslaw and served with a pickle spear on the side.

Spinach and Artichoke Dip: A creamy dip made with spinach, artichoke hearts, cream cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, garlic, and Parmesan cheese, served warm with tortilla chips or bread slices for dipping.

Deviled Eggs: Hard-boiled eggs halved and filled with a creamy mixture of egg yolks, mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, salt, and pepper, garnished with paprika or chopped chives.

Stuffed Mini Peppers: Mini sweet peppers stuffed with a mixture of cream cheese, herbs, and spices, then baked until soft and creamy.

Bruschetta: Slices of toasted baguette topped with a mixture of diced tomatoes, garlic, basil, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper.

Cucumber Bites: Thin cucumber slices topped with cream cheese or herbed cheese spread, smoked salmon or prosciutto, and a sprinkle of fresh dill or chives.

Grilled Shrimp Skewers: Large shrimp marinated in garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and herbs, then grilled until tender and served on skewers for easy eating.

Vegetable Spring Rolls: Rice paper wrappers filled with a colorful mix of shredded carrots, cucumbers, bell peppers, lettuce, and fresh herbs, served with a dipping sauce like sweet chili or peanut sauce.

Remember to consider any dietary restrictions and offer a variety of vegetarian or gluten-free options to accommodate all of your guests. 

6. Serve Summer Season Salads at the Memorial Day Party

The best way to continue planning your Memorial Day party menu is to feature great summer season salads.

Memorial Day Party Summer Salads

Offer a variety of salad options like:

Classic Potato Salad: Cubed boiled potatoes mixed with chopped hard-boiled eggs, diced celery, red onion, mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, and seasonings like salt, pepper, and paprika.

Watermelon Feta Salad: Cubes of juicy watermelon tossed with crumbled feta cheese, fresh mint leaves, red onion slices, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze.

Caprese Salad: Slices of ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, and basil leaves arranged on a platter, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and sprinkled with salt and pepper.

Grilled Corn Salad: Grilled corn kernels mixed with diced avocado, cherry tomatoes, red onion, cilantro, lime juice, and a sprinkle of chili powder.

Quinoa Salad with Summer Vegetables: Cooked quinoa tossed with chopped cucumbers, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, red onion, fresh herbs, lemon juice, and olive oil.

Greek Salad: Chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, Kalamata olives, and crumbled feta cheese tossed with olive oil, red wine vinegar, oregano, salt, and pepper.

Mango Avocado Salad: Slices of ripe mango and avocado tossed with mixed greens, red onion, toasted almonds, and a citrus vinaigrette dressing.

Orzo Pasta Salad: Cooked orzo pasta mixed with chopped cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, Kalamata olives, red onion, fresh herbs, lemon juice, and olive oil.

Asian Noodle Salad: Cooked soba or rice noodles tossed with shredded cabbage, carrots, bell peppers, edamame beans, green onions, sesame seeds, and a soy ginger dressing.

Berry Spinach Salad: Baby spinach leaves topped with fresh strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, goat cheese crumbles, toasted pecans, and a balsamic vinaigrette dressing.

Adding summer season salads to your long weekend Memorial Day party menu is a great time to provide delicious options for your guests to enjoy.

7. Easy Memorial Day Party Ideas for Party Food

When planning your Memorial Day party main course menu, be sure to add easy and crowd-pleasing options and unique food ideas. 

Memorial Day Party BBQ Ideas

Here’s some fun main course menu ideas your guests will love:

Grilled BBQ Chicken: Marinated chicken pieces grilled to perfection and brushed with your favorite backyard BBQ sauce.

Hamburgers: Juicy beef patties grilled to your desired level of doneness, served with an assortment of toppings such as lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese, pickles, and condiments.

Hot Dogs: Classic beef or pork hot dogs served with a variety of toppings and condiments at your own hot dog bar.

Grilled Steak: Tender cuts of steak seasoned with salt, pepper, and your favorite steak rub, grilled to your preferred level of doneness.

Vegetable Kebabs: Skewers of assorted vegetables such as bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, and onions grilled to perfection and served with a side of dipping sauce.

BBQ Ribs: Tender pork ribs slow-cooked or grilled and basted with barbecue sauce until they’re fall-off-the-bone delicious.

Pulled Pork Sandwiches: Slow-cooked pork shoulder seasoned with barbecue spices and served on buns with coleslaw and extra barbecue sauce.

Grilled Fish Tacos: Fresh fish filets seasoned with spices, grilled, and served in warm tortillas with cabbage slaw, avocado, salsa, and lime wedges.

Grilled Veggie Burgers: Homemade or store-bought veggie burgers grilled and served on buns with lettuce, tomato, onion, and condiments.

Barbecue Beef Brisket: Tender beef brisket is slow-cooked until it’s meltingly tender and served sliced with barbecue sauce on the side.

8. Feature Lots of Desserts for Memorial Day Parties

For those with a sweet tooth, Memorial Day parties provide the perfect time to indulge in a variety of delectable and festive dessert options.

Memorial Day Party Dessert Ideas

From classic favorites to unique treats here are some delicious desserts:

Ice Cream Bar with Red, White, and Blue Sprinkles: Offer a variety of ice cream flavors such as vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry, along with an assortment of toppings like whipped cream, chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, chopped nuts, cherries, and of course, red, white, and blue sprinkles for a patriotic touch.

Apple Pie: Serve classic apple pie with a flaky crust, filled with cinnamon-spiced apples and served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.

American Flag Cake: Bake a sheet cake and decorate it to resemble the American flag using whipped cream or frosting for the white stripes, and blueberries and strawberries for the stars and stripes.

Mixed Berry Trifle: Layer cubes of pound cake with whipped cream and a mixture of fresh berries (such as strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries) to create a stunning and delicious dessert.

Patriotic Fruit Salad: Arrange a colorful fruit salad with red fruits like strawberries, watermelon, and raspberries, white fruits like bananas and apples, and blue fruits like blueberries and blackberries, for a festive and healthy dessert option.

Lemon Bars: Tangy and sweet lemon bars with a buttery shortbread crust, dusted with powdered sugar, are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

Red, White, and Blue Popsicles: Make homemade popsicles using layers of red fruit juice (such as strawberry or raspberry), coconut milk, and blue fruit juice (such as blueberry or blackberry), for a refreshing and patriotic treat.

S’mores Dip: Serve a warm and gooey s’mores dip made with melted chocolate and marshmallow fluff, served with graham crackers for dipping. For fun, serve in mason jars.

Patriotic Cupcakes: Decorate cupcakes with red, white, and blue frosting swirls and top them with patriotic sprinkles or small American flag toothpicks.

Coconut Cream Pie: Indulge in a creamy coconut cream pie with a flaky crust, topped with whipped cream and toasted coconut flakes.

Whatever desserts you choose, they are sure to be a hit at your Memorial Day party.

9. Party Games and Activities Ideas to Celebrate the Unofficial Start of Summer

As we gather to celebrate the unofficial start of summer, a fun way to spend quality time with guests is to play games and activities during your Memorial Day event.

Memorial Day Party Pool Party Ideas

Here are some creative games for both indoor and outdoor games:

Corn hole: Set up corn hole boards and bean bags for a friendly bean bag toss competition. It’s a classic backyard game that’s always a hit at parties.

Memorial Day Party Games

Games for Pool Parties:

  • Marco Polo: A classic pool game where one person (Marco) closes their eyes and tries to tag other players (Polo) by calling out “Marco” and listening for their responses.
  • Water Volleyball: Set up a net across your pool and play a game of water volleyball with friends and family.
  • Floating Relay Races: Organize relay races in the pool using inflatable rafts or pool noodles for added fun.

Giant Jenga: Stack up giant wooden blocks and take turns removing them without toppling the tower. It’s a suspenseful and exciting game that’s perfect for outdoor gatherings.

Water Balloon Toss: Divide into pairs and toss water balloons back and forth, taking a step back after each successful catch. The pair that can toss the balloon the farthest without it breaking wins!

Memorial Day Party Games and Activities

Lawn Games:

  • Bocce Ball: Set up a bocce ball court and enjoy a game of skill and strategy with friends and family.
  • Croquet: Set up a croquet course and take turns trying to hit your ball through the wickets to reach the finishing stake.
  • Giant Connect Four: Play a supersized version of Connect Four, where players take turns dropping large discs into the frame to try and get four in a row.

Three-Legged Race: Pair up participants and have them stand side by side, with their inside legs tied together. On “go,” they must race to a designated finish line, hopping along together.

Sack Race: Provide large burlap or potato sacks for participants to hop in, and then race to the finish line. It’s a hilarious and energetic activity that everyone can enjoy.

Tug-of-War: Divide into two teams and see which team can pull the other across a designated line first. It’s a classic test of strength and teamwork.

Watermelon Eating Contest: Cut a watermelon into slices and have participants race to see who can eat their slice the fastest, without using their hands. It’s messy but loads of fun!

Card Games:

  • Uno: A classic card game that’s easy to learn and fun for players of all ages. Race to be the first to empty your hand of cards by matching colors and numbers.
  • Go Fish: A timeless card game where players ask each other for specific cards to make pairs. The player with the most pairs at the end of the game wins.
  • Hearts: A trick-taking card game where players try to avoid taking certain cards that carry penalty points. The player with the fewest points at the end of the game wins.

Printable Word Searches: Purchase Memorial Day or summer themed word search puzzles for your guests to enjoy. You can find cheap printable puzzles on Etsy with words related to Memorial Day or summer.

Scavenger Hunt: Organize a scavenger hunt with this great printable around your backyard or neighborhood, with clues and challenges that lead participants to different locations or objects. It’s a fun and interactive way to explore the area and engage with guests.

Obstacle Course: Set up an obstacle course in your backyard with various challenges such as crawling under ropes, jumping over hurdles, balancing on beams, and more. Time each participant as they navigate the course, and award prizes for the fastest times.

Glow Stick Capture the Flag: Play a nighttime version of Capture the Flag using glow sticks to mark boundaries and flags. Divide into teams and try to capture the opposing team’s flag while avoiding being tagged. It’s a thrilling game that adds an extra element of excitement to your holiday party.

10. Crowd Pleaser Prizes for Party Game Winners

To add a little excitement and friendly competition to your Memorial Day party games, offer great prizes for the winners.

These prizes could range from small, personalized trophies or medals to Amazon or Etsy gift cards.

Memorial Day Party Game Prizes and Awards

Another fun option is to create patriotic themed prize baskets filled with goodies such as red, white, and blue drink tumblers, beach towels, and snacks or candy.

For a fun party activity, crown the winners in an awards ceremony at the end of the party game’s competition.

11. Party Favors to Thank Guests for Coming to Your Memorial Day Weekend Party

Finally, be sure to show appreciation to your guests for attending your Memorial Day weekend party by offering party favors. 

These small tokens of gratitude can double as patriotic wearable favors or a way to make your party guests remember your event for years to come.

Memorial Day Party Favor Ideas

There are tons of great party favor ideas like:

Patriotic Sunglasses: Provide guests with sunglasses featuring red, white, and blue frames or lenses to keep them stylish and protected from the sun.

Mini American Flags: Hand out small handheld American flags that guests can wave during patriotic moments or keep as a souvenir of the party.

Patriotic Pins or Buttons: Provide guests with pins or buttons featuring patriotic symbols like the American flag, bald eagle, or stars and stripes.

Temporary Tattoos: Offer guests temporary tattoos featuring patriotic designs such as flags, stars, or patriotic slogans.

Mini Mason Jar Candles: Give guests mini mason jar candles with red, white, and blue wax or patriotic scents like apple pie or vanilla.

Patriotic Drink Koozies: Provide guests with drink koozies featuring patriotic designs or colors to keep their beverages cold and their hands dry.

Patriotic Bottle Opener Keychains: Give guests keychains featuring bottle openers and patriotic designs like flags, stars, or eagles.

Patriotic Wristbands: Provide guests with silicone wristbands featuring patriotic colors or messages like “Land of the Free” or “Home of the Brave.”

Patriotic Seed Packets: Give guests packets of seeds for red, white, and blue flowers or plants that they can grow at home as a symbol of patriotism and remembrance.

Providing Memorial Day party favors ensures your guests leave with a small reminder of the enjoyable time shared at your Memorial Day celebration.

11 Easy Tips to Host a Fun Memorial Day Party 2

Final thoughts

As we approach Memorial Day, it’s important to remember the true meaning behind this holiday and honor those who have served our country.

But it’s also a time to gather with friends and family, and what better way to celebrate the unofficial start of summer than with a party?

From patriotic decorations to tasty BBQ recipes, there are endless ways to make your Memorial Day party a memorable one. 

So let’s raise our glasses to the brave men and women who have fought for our freedom, and enjoy a day of good food, good company, and good memories. 

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Your turn

Are you hosting a celebration to start summer at your home? Which of these Memorial Day party ideas are your favorites? Let me know in the comments.


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35 thoughts on “11 Easy Tips to Host a Fun Memorial Day Party in 2024”

  1. I hadn’t planned on a party, but now I’m eager to throw one!

  2. Memorial day is so fun and I love to plan parties! This gave me so much inspiration. Thank you!

    • Thanks for the tips for Memorial Day! Great ideas

      • Hi Kayla!

        You are most welcome. I’m glad you liked the Memorial Day party tips!

  3. These are great ideas for hosting a fun Memorial Day party. The suggestions for food and games look like a lot of fun. Thanks for the inspiration!

  4. I used to hold huge Memorial Day get-togethers. Your list is spot on and will help people to have a wonderful Memorial Day party.

  5. Love these easy Memorial Day party ideas! Perfect for starting the summer holidays on the right note.

    • Hi Ann!

      I’m excited you love the Memorial Day party ideas. I love starting summer off on the right note, too!

      Thanks for reading!

  6. We don’t celebrate Memorial Day in Bulgaria, but I love your easy tips for hosting a fun Memorial Day party. I think I can use these tips for other parties, too.

    • Hi Hadassah!

      I’m glad you found some party ideas for some of your celebrations in Bulgaria. Thanks for reading!

  7. Awesome ideas, love your drink recommendations. Will keep this in mind for future reference.

    • Hi Fransic!

      I’m so glad you love the Memorial Day party drink ideas. I hope you enjoy your holiday.

      Thanks for reading!

  8. These are fun ideas. We always do a potluck party, but I think a great addition this year would be for everyone to bring some kind of fun party favor in addition to their dish!

    • Hi Beth!

      I’m so glad you like the ideas for a Memorial Day picnic. I hope you have a great party this year!


  9. We’ve never hosted a Memorial Day party but these are super fun tips! Great way to kick off summer!

    • Hi Neely!

      I’m glad you like the Memorial Day party tips. I’m excited to kick off summer!

      Thanks for reading!

  10. In Belgium we don’t celebrate it, but these easy tips cover everything from themes to refreshing drinks to kick off summer with style.

    • Hi Renata!

      I’m glad you found some party ideas even though you don’t celebrate Memorial Day.

      Thanks for reading!

  11. These are cool Memorial day party ideas. I’ve never really celebrated this holiday but thanks to this article I’m tempted to try.

    • Hi Richard!

      I hope you’re able to enjoy the Memorial Day holiday this year.

      Thanks for reading!

  12. It would be great to add a fun party favor to everyone’s dish at this year’s party! I agree that these are excellent ideas!

    • Hi Mila!

      Yes- I love adding party favors to the mix at my parties.

      Thanks for reading!

  13. Time flies too fast, and it’s hard to believe that Memorial Day is almost here. It’s essential to make the most of every moment and cherish the memories we create.

    • Hi Barbie!

      I can’t believe Memorial Day is almost here! I love making the most of holidays and celebrating.

      Thanks for reading!

  14. Sounds like you’re all set to make this Memorial Day extra special! These ideas are sure to make your party a hit with your guests. Have a great time!

  15. What a lovely way to celebrate Memorial Day. It would be fun to put together a party for the weekend. Thanks for all these great ideas. I usually don’t do much, but you’re inspiring me to put together something fun.

    • Hi Marysa!

      You are most welcome. I’m glad you got some party celebration ideas from the post.

      Thanks for reading!

  16. Feeling incredibly inspired by these fantastic Memorial Day party suggestions – from delicious food ideas to entertaining games, they’ve set the perfect tone for kicking off the summer holidays! Thank you for the inspiration!

    • Hi Pedja!

      I’m so glad you found some inspiration for a Memorial Day party.

      Thanks for reading!

  17. Here in our country we are very serious in hosting a memorial day. So this is my first time knowing this kind of activities in memorial days. This is good.

  18. I agree with you that it would nice to offer a wide variety of drinks. I am happy that you included Moscom Mule on the list. It’s very popular in our group. Thank you for sharing all these tips in preparing for Memorial Day.

    • You are very welcome. I’m glad you found some party ideas for your Memorial Day celebration. Thanks for reading!


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