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Five Tips for an Awesome Outdoor Movie Night Main Photo

Five Tips for an Awesome Outdoor Movie Night

There’s something magical about watching a movie under the stars!
Posted: June 23, 2022 by Josh Arnold

There’s something magical about watching a movie under the stars with friends. If you’re not close to one of the few drive-in theaters still in existence, no worries – you can easily transform your backyard into an outdoor home theater. Here are five tips for turning your backyard into a pop-up movie theater.

Projector and Screen

If you want to capture the essence of the drive-in theater, there’s no substitute for a good projector. An outdoor projector should be at least 1,200 lumens, a measurement of how much light a device emits. Another must-have feature are HDMI ports, so you can connect items such as Blu-ray DVD players. If you don’t want to invest in a projector, bring your TV and DVD player outside.

Comfy Seating

Provide your guests with a range of comfortable seating options, including patio furniture, lounge chairs, blankets and outdoor pillows. Of if you have a pool, even better. Host a raft-up party and invite guests to bring their own pool float to relax on while the movie plays.


Step up your game by creating a popcorn bar for guests. Fill small decorative bags with popcorn and offer an assortment of candy treats, marshmallows and other sweet mix-ins. And, of course, a movie night wouldn’t be complete without offering some classic movie-theater candy like Raisinets, Jujubes and the perennial favorite – Junior Mints!

Soft Lights

While your yard needs to be dark enough to see the movie, you also will need a little light so guests don’t trip over each other on the way to the snack bar. String lights and luminaries are a nice inexpensive option, casting a glow over your yard without distracting from the movie.


Spray the backyard before guests arrive, or, if your backyard isn’t generally buggy, offer them insect repellent. There is quite an array of natural bug-repelling options available to keep the swatting to a minimum.

Hosting a backyard film fest isn’t as challenging as you might think. With just a little planning ahead and some creativity, you can bring the drive-in movie theater experience to your backyard… possibly even better.

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