How to Throw a Beach Party this Summer

32' Elite FunFlicks inflatable movie screen on the beach

Whether you're planning a huge oceanside luau or a small barbecue at the lake, beach parties are an excellent way to bring the community together in celebration of summer. There's nothing quite like having fun where there's sand between your toes and a cool breeze in the air. If you're wondering how to throw a beach party, we're here to help you organize the best one ever. For over two decades, FunFlicks® has curated professional events from coast to coast.

Why Throw a Summer Beach Party?

  • The beach’s cool weather and beautiful scenery brings people together. It's a perfect opportunity for recreation that creates lasting memories and strengthens the community.
  • From nautical decor to beach-inspired cuisine, the possibilities are endless when it comes to interesting ways to creatively theme your event.
  • A party on the beach encourages physical activity, relaxation, and plenty of vitamin D, contributing to a healthy time outdoors.
  • A variety of activities, from sand castle building to surfing, can be enjoyed on the coast, creating a unique party experience.
  • The stunning backdrop provides excellent photo opportunities that capture the unique atmosphere of the event.
Tropical beach

1) Find the Perfect Location

To host a successful party on the beach, it's essential to choose a location with ample space and legal access. Ensure you coordinate with local authorities and adhere to their regulations. Keep in mind that certain beaches have restrictions on activities such as drinking, campfires, and dog walking. Familiarize yourself with these local laws to avoid any issues, and make sure to inform your guests about the guidelines beforehand.

2) Plan the Activities

Engaging activities that offer fun for everyone in attendance are recommended.

Professionally crafted sand castle

How to Host a Sand Castle Contest

The sandcastle building area should be marked just above the high tide line in order to avoid waves washing away the structures. Ideally, the sand in the area should be packable yet moist, allowing for builders to form detailed castles. In order to encourage participation, promote the event via social media, posters, or flyers that clearly explain important event details. On the day of the contest, provide participants with tools, including buckets and shovels, so that everyone can create their own castles. Enhance the event with music, food, a party on the beach, and an award ceremony where judges can announce the champion and give away prizes.

Summer surf competition

How to Organize a Surf Competition

To host the ultimate surf competition at your summer beach party, choose a beach with gnarly waves and plenty of space. Begin by obtaining necessary permits from your city or parks and recreation department. To boost participation and attendance, consider making the event a fundraiser for a specific cause. Successful advertising may be achieved with active social media posts, flyers, and posters that clearly show all the important details in a creative way. Set up a registration booth near the beach for ticket sales, surfer sign-ups, and lifeguard volunteers.

For an event that seeks participation for all ages, categories based on skill level should be assigned. Judges may score performances on criteria such as style, wave selection, and maneuvers. Before the main event, don't forget to provide clear rules and a detailed schedule for the participants, including practice times and heat durations.

Volleyball on the beach at sunset

How to Throw a Beach Volleyball Tournament

Following Olympic standards, a beach volleyball court must be 16m by 8m, with a 2.43m (7.97ft) net for men's competitions and a 2.24m (7.35ft) net for women's competitions. Select a location that can accommodate the court(s) and audience. After the perfect spot is chosen, secure the necessary permits from local authorities and advertise the event with social media posts, local radio announcements, flyers, or other means.

A simple registration process where teams can enter should be established online and in person. Ensure all participants are aware of the rules and schedule once the teams are finalized. Referees, plenty of water, a booming sound system, and concessions all enhance the experience.

Campfire on the beach

How to Start a Bonfire on the Beach

Before starting a bonfire on the beach, understand local regulations in order to avoid fines or penalties. Choose an open area away from trees or structures. Once you've found the perfect spot, dig a 1-2 foot-deep pit to contain the fire and provide proper ventilation. Next, gather wood and kindling, arranging them in a teepee shape within the pit. To start the fire, use a lighter and, if necessary, a small amount of lighter fluid. After the evening has come to an end, extinguish the flames with water and sand. The beach should be left with no trace once all the wood is collected.

FunFlicks party on the beach

How to Host a Movie Party on the Beach

A beach movie party is a fantastic way to bring community members of all ages together for an unforgettable cinematic experience. Local FunFlicks® technicians across the United States make hosting a movie night easy. We provide everything you need, including surround-sound speakers, high-resolution projection, and a giant inflatable screen. While you sit back, relax, and enjoy an evening on the coast, our techs handle all the equipment operations.

An area large enough for both the screen and audience must be chosen for a movie party on the beach. Confirm your plans with local authorities well in advance to ensure compliance with regulations. Promote the event through posters, flyers, and social media, clearly stating the movie's start time and ticket purchase details. This helps generate excitement and ensures attendees have all the necessary information.

Summer Beach Party Movie Ideas

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3) Get Permission

If you're considering hosting your summer beach party on land that isn't your own, it's advisable to reach out to the owner, whether it's privately or publicly owned. This step ensures you're aware of any specific regulations or permissions required for the event. If any permits are needed, submit applications at least a month before the event. This foresight allows ample time for processing and potential revisions. Notably, many states impose increased fees for special event permits filed within 30 days of the event, emphasizing the importance of early application to avoid unnecessary financial burdens.

4) Choose a Beach Party Theme

Elevate your party experience by incorporating a captivating theme that deeply engages your audience. A carefully selected theme seamlessly integrates into every detail, immersing guests in an unforgettable outdoor movie adventure.

Hawaiian luau themed party for 100 people

Hawaiian Luau

For the ultimate luau beach party, decorate with tiki torches and vibrant tiki heads. Barbecue a delicious kalua pig and serve Mai Tais for an authentic feast. Distribute orchid lavender leis to guests upon arrival, creating a festive atmosphere. Play traditional Hawaiian music and encourage hula dancing to enhance the experience. Cap off the evening by screening the family-friendly movie Moana (2016), which provides a perfect blend of cultural celebration and entertainment.

Pirate themed costume at a party on the beach

Pirate Palooza

Dive into the adventurous world of swashbuckling tales with a pirate-themed party. Enhance your pirate party atmosphere by flying the Jolly Roger flag and decorating with wooden crates, gold coins, and candles. Serve salmagundi, a popular pirate dish featuring a mix of fish, eggs, shrimp, poultry, onions, and veggies. Don’t forget the rum! Encourage guests to arrive in their finest tricorne hats, boots, and eye patches. Organize a scavenger hunt to take guests on a grand adventure, culminating in a hidden treasure. In the evening, entertain everyone with a screening of Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003) on an outdoor movie screen.

Yacht rock themed party

Yacht Rock

Travel back in time to Marina del Rey in the late '70s, with the wind in your hair as you set sail to the smooth sounds of Michael McDonald, Steely Dan, and Toto at your yacht rock party. A seafood feast featuring lobster, complemented by refreshing drinks such as piña coladas and signature cocktails, should be served. Encourage guests to embrace the smoothness of the late 70's and early 80's scene with captain hats, boat shoes, and brightly colored Hawaiian shirts. Sing along to timeless classics from Christopher Cross to the Doobie Brothers with karaoke, adding an extra layer of nostalgic fun to your summer beach party.

Under the sea themed outdoor movie party at the beach

Under the Sea

Dive into the oceanic wonders with an under-the-sea-themed beach party, where the area is adorned with enchanting jellyfish lanterns and flowing seaweed streamers. Seafood such as fish and chips or clam chowder makes for an excellent meal served alongside gummy shark slushies. Encourage guests to don attire ranging from mermaids to sea creatures as they gather to watch the timeless adventure of Finding Nemo (2003) on an outdoor movie screen after the sun sets over the horizon.

1960's beach post card

Vintage Surf

Transport your guests back to the golden age of surfing in the USA with a 1960s-themed beach party, complete with vibrant decorations featuring beach balls and surfboards. Fire up the barbecue and offer hotdogs and burgers for a nostalgic meal, allowing guests to customize with their favorite condiments. For dessert, indulge in old-fashioned malts and ice cream sundaes, a timeless treat. Encourage guests to embrace the theme by dressing in 1950s beachwear, such as high-waisted swimsuits, sun hats, and cat-eye sunglasses for women, and vintage Hawaiian shirts and swim trunks for men. Set the mood with classic Beach Boys tunes as guests partake in activities like limbo and hula-hooping. As the sun sets, gather around a bonfire and enjoy a movie screening of Beach Party (1963) or Jaws (1975) on an outdoor movie screen.

5) Pick a Date

Summer months are prime for beach parties, drawing crowds with their warm weather and coastal allure. While it's typically sunny, it's crucial to monitor the forecast and tide chart for optimal conditions. Ideal days feature sunshine, gentle breezes, and low tides, ensuring ample beach space. Weekends are favored, maximizing attendance and enjoyment for all.

6) Advertise the Event

Inviting guests to your beach party can be done in various ways. For intimate gatherings, consider sending invitations via mail or a simple text message. For larger events, promote with attention-grabbing posters, engaging social media posts, or local radio ads. Regardless of size, ensure all essential details are included: location, start time, theme, admission fees (if any), suggested items to bring, and activity schedules. Providing comprehensive information ensures guests can plan accordingly and fully enjoy the festivities.

7) Set Up the Area

Before guests arrive, transform the area to match your party's theme. Set up tables with seating and utensils for serving food. If having a bonfire, dig a designated hole and block it off to prevent accidents. These preparations ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all attendees.

Meats and veggies cooking on the BBQ

8) Provide Food & Drinks

Before guests arrive, transform the area to match your party's theme. Set up tables with seating and utensils for serving food. If having a bonfire, dig a designated hole and block it off to prevent accidents. These preparations ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all attendees.

9) Capture the Memories

Capture timeless memories of your event by snapping plenty of photos. Designate a photographer to document the festivities, capturing candid moments against breathtaking coastal backdrops. Enhance photo opportunities with a themed photo booth station, complete with fun props for guests to strike poses with and create lasting mementos.

10) Clean Up

As the evening winds down and guests depart, it's crucial to clean up the beach. This not only prevents fines or penalties for littering but also ensures you can host future parties hassle-free. By cleaning up thoroughly, you preserve the beauty of the beach for all to enjoy.

San Diego outdoor movie party on the beach

Common Questions

Do I need a permit to throw a party on the beach?

In most places, obtaining a special event permit is typically required for hosting a beach party. Additional permits may be required depending on factors such as the estimated number of guests, if you're serving alcohol, event hours, starting a campfire, and compliance with noise ordinances. It's essential to familiarize yourself with the specific requirements of your local jurisdiction to ensure a smooth and compliant event planning process.

Who do I need to contact in order to throw a party on the beach?

Contacting various organizations and individuals is often necessary when planning a beach party. Begin by reaching out to the local parks and recreation office, as they can offer guidance on required permits and relevant laws. This initial step ensures you have the necessary information to proceed with your event while adhering to regulations.

What are the best summer beach party movies?

Classic films like Jaws (1975), The Little Mermaid (1989), and The Goonies (1985) are excellent choices for a wide range of audiences. More recent movies, such as Moana (2016) and Finding Dory (2016), are especially popular with children.

How to throw a party at the beach at night?

When throwing a beach party at night, it's important to monitor the rising tides. Ensure plenty of light with sources like a bonfire or tiki torches so everyone can stay aware of their surroundings. An outdoor movie party is an excellent activity for all ages, offering a unique cinematic experience under the stars.

Summer Beach Party Event Rentals

FunFlicks® Inflatable Movie Screen Rentals

Inflatable movie screen rental drive-in

FunFlicks® inflatable movie screens are professional quality at an affordable price. There's a size for everyone, whether you're throwing a massive film festival with thousands in attendance or a small birthday with family at your house. To make sure everything runs smoothly, a local FunFlicks® event technician will arrive at your location on time, set up the screen, oversee the technology, and pack it all away at the end of the screening. Booming high-definition sound, crystal-clear laser projection, and a larger-than-life display are all included when you book an event with us.

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Backyard 16'
12'x7' Display
100 Guests
20 Cars

Premiere 21'
16'x9' Display
250 Guests
50 Cars

Blockbuster 26'
20'x12' Display
500 Guests
75 Cars

Elite 32'
26'x15' Display
750 Guests
100 Cars

Epic 40'
30'x17' Display
1500 Guests
150 Cars

Xtreme 50'
40'x22' Display
3000 Guests
250 Cars

FunFlicks® LED Screen Rentals

LED screen rental event among palm trees

FunFlicks LED screens are perfect for day or night display in almost any environment. Utilizing electroluminescent technology, our LED screens generate light effectively at any time of day. Each panel is rated IP65, meaning they are both rain and dustproof. Day or night, rain or shine, you get to decide when the magic happens. All of our mobile LED trailers have onboard generators for portable power. Therefore, no power supply is needed. Similar to our inflatable screens, our fleet of LED screens comes in a variety of dimensions for a variety of crowd sizes. Local event technicians across the country are available to bring our LED trailers anywhere for you to enjoy video games, live sports, movies, advertisements, or almost everything else!

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8'x5' LED Trailer
75 Guests
15 Cars

12'x7' LED Trailer
100 Guests
20 Cars

15'x8' LED Trailer
250 Guests
50 Cars

17'x10' LED Trailer
500 Guests
75 Cars

23'x13' LED Trailer
750 Guests
100 Cars

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