It may be the stuff of Pinterest dreams, but it’s totally achievable!
Whether it's a block party or an intimate date night, there's just something dreamy about watching a movie under the stars. Yes, movie theaters are slowly opening up again, but the thrill of an outdoor movie in your backyard or on your roof won't fade. It takes a little preparation and some purchasing power to lay the foundation for your first screening, as you'll need a projector with enough power to shine through the light pollution in your area and a surface to project the movie onto. Depending on your projector's capabilities, you may want to boost the volume with speakers, too.
While you could project onto a flat wall, fence, or bed sheet, you'll get the best picture quality with a screen. First, assess your space's access to a power source to decide if you want an inflatable or pulldown screen. Then figure out what surface you'll be sitting on, so you know how the screen can be stabilized. An inflatable screen, for example, will need a power source for its fan, and grass or dirt for the stakes that support it.
Once you have the tech angles figured out, add in layers of comfort so that you and your guests can sit through a 2-hour movie without aching backs or bug attacks. Consider who is in your audience when you're deciding on seating. Adults will want supportive beach chairs or outdoor loungers, while kids can be comfy on the ground with blankets and pillows. Keep the citronella burning to ward off mosquitoes, and turn on a few outdoor lights so guests can get up and move about safely. Of course, no movie theater is complete without a concession stand. Load up on popcorn and snacks, and keep your drinks close and cold with a stocked cooler and insulated cups.
From the readymade to the DIY, you've got options in how to have an outdoor movie night at home. We've picked our favorite items to make it easy to start your screening under the stars.