Once the weather finally starts to warm up, you and everyone you know is going to feel the temptation to spend as much time outside as humanly possible.
Picnics, pool parties, barbeques and more are incredibly common throughout the United States during the warm spring and summer months.
That being said, those common ways to get outside and enjoy the warm air can get a little old after a few months. That’s why one great way to shake things up with your family and friends is to get together and throw an outdoor movie night!
It might sound like an incredibly difficult undertaking to carry out, but it’s actually super easy.
To make the task as simple as possible, here are the major things to consider when it comes to hosting the perfect movie night in your own backyard.
Choose the perfect movie
This might be obvious, but you’re going to want to choose the perfect movie for your night. Not only will choosing the movie help you choose the perfect snacks, decorations, and other factors, it will also help avoid bickering amongst your kids during later stages of the planning.
If your family can’t come to a unified consensus, you might as well go my majority rule. That way, this fun experience can also serve as a bit of a learning experience!
Here are some prime considerations when it comes to the type of movie you are going to show:
- Disney Classic: There is simply no way to go wrong with putting on one of the iconic Disney animation films. However, if you’re kids are more interested, you could also opt for one of their newer updated versions such as “Lion King” or “Beauty and the Beast”
- Marvel or Star Wars: Trying to imitate the feel of a night at the cinema? No better way than to go all-out and get one of the biggest movies to come out over the last year. “Rogue One’ is a great option from the Star Wars universe, and Marvel’s “Infinity War” is heralded as one of the best superhero movies ever made. Not only that, as both these movies have fairly long runtimes, you can be sure that you make the most out of your movie night.
- A drive-thru classic: This is another fantastic option. If you want to get the feel of a classic drive-thru, consider a film like “The Goonies,” “The Wizard of Oz,” “The Goonies,” or “Jaws.”
Set up your theater
Obviously, you aren’t going to want to simply bring out your flat screen TV and prop it up in the backyard. You really want to go out all for this. Here are the major pieces of equipment to keep in mind.
- Projector: When it comes to outdoor movie nights, a project is a must have. Make sure that the project your get is bright, can be controlled remotely, and is compatible with laptops, Roku, Amazon Fire sticks, Google Chromecast, or what ever you plan to use to stream the film.
- A screen: The very best option that you can get is an inflatable screen. Not only can you give your backyard a real movie theater feel, you will also be able to situate the screen in a number of different areas around the backyard so that you can make the most out of the space that you are holding the event in. Don’t worry, though! You don’t need to buy this. Simply look for outdoor projector screen rental offers in your area and rent one for the night or weekend.
- Speakers: Do not! I repeat, do not depend on the speakers from you laptop or something small like that. Even if your speakers are more than loud enough in your living room, you will have to deal with atmospheric nose, cars, wind, and much more. Get some nice big speakers that carry well to make sure that people all over the backyard can hear what’s going on on the screen.
- Extension chords: Make sure that everything that needs to get plugged in, can. The best way to ensure this is to get a number of extension chords just in case.
Focus on comfort
The final things to keep in mind when it comes to your move night party is to make sure that all your guests are comfortable and well fed. Here are some tips!
- Bring tons of pillows and blankets: Create a comfy and warm picnic-like environment. Even if you’re holding a movie on a warm summer night, it can get chilly as the sun sets.
- Get citronella candles or bug spray: One of the very worst parts of summer is the bugs. Make sure the keep the mosquitos and other biting and stinging critters at bay by lighting a number of citronella candles or torches or go the classic route with some cans of bug spray. Personally, I think the torches are best as they do lend themselves to a festive feel.
- Light the way: Getting a number of lights or flashlights to help guests find their way to and from their seats is a great way to minimize distraction and reduce the risk of someone falling down and getting hurt.
Bring the right grub
This is the final piece of your movie party puzzle. The truth is there is no way to really go wrong with food during your movie, but theater classics is always a great way to go.
- Popcorn and candy: These simply have to make an appearance! Whether you’re popping some bags in the microwave, renting a popper, or just getting some bags of pre-popped, it’s kind of crazy to consider not having any! The same can be said about candy. Let your kids splurge a bit and get a few boxes of their favorite candy.
- Bring something a little more substantial: This movie night is probably going to take place sometime around dinner, so you might as well get some. Having a bbq or ordering pizza is an easy and tasty way to keep everyone full.
- Serve water and soft drinks out of a cooler: Sure, a couple bottles of soft drinks is okay, but you want to mostly serve water. That ensures that no one will get a sugar rush and fly off the walls during the third act of the movie!
Winter Fun at Glide at Brooklyn Bridge Park
Skate underneath the historic Brooklyn Bridge while taking in the iconic views of the Manhattan skyline. Glide at Brooklyn Bridge Park is a premier winter experience in a setting that will take your breath away.
Glide at Brooklyn Bridge Park is located at Emily Warren Roebling Plaza, found at the base of the iconic Brooklyn Bridge. Our location is accessible via foot, subway, and NYC Ferry. Glide is a stone’s throw from familiar points within the park, Jane’s Carousel and Empire Fulton Ferry, and near popular dining destinations such as the River Café, Luke’s Lobster, and Van Leeuwen Ice Cream.
Emily Warren Roebling Plaza
at Brooklyn Bridge Park
Brooklyn, NY 11201
For tickets please visit HERE.
Off Broadway Girl Talk Madwomen of the West
Right now at the Actors Temple Theatre, 339 West 47th Street is the New York premier of Sandra Tsing Loh’s Madwomen of the West. The show in a way reminded me of the 1996 play Love, Loss, and What I Wore, where celebrities joined on stage. Here you have Caroline Aaron, Brooke Adams, Marilu Henner, and Melanie Mayron, all actors who have performed on film, TV and stage. They are like long lost friends, they are so familiar.
The four have gathered together for Claudia’s (Mayron) birthday. It is being thrown at the Brentwood home of Jules (Adams) and Marilyn (Aaron) has decorated. Enter the long lost Zoey (Henner) and what you think you know about these friends, isn’t what it seems. As a matter of fact, this birthday brunch is about to turn into the brunch from hell. These Baby Boomers, are also feminists admiring Hilary Clinton and Gloria Steinem, though not always on the same side. They break the 4th wall, as they banter back and forth to themselves and to us, the audience. They confront, encourage, justify and talk about transgender, health, the horror of Trump and those “pussy hats”, sex and so much more. Think “girl-talk” to the max.
They sit on couches, as a backdrop of palm trees, and a lone piñata take center stage, thanks to set designer Christian Fleming. The play has no money, so the production is bare bones…. so they say. Everything about this show is tongue and check and is well directed by Thomas Caruso.
Each actor here shines and in an out of the way aside, each has pieces of their real selves written into the roles they play. Not having seen Aaron on stage before, I was impressed by her vocal quality and humor. Adams brings sophistication and Mayron adds that knowing, we are all in the same messed up boat. Henner will make you want that body and her sex appeal.
These women knocked down doors for the women to come, but I was surprised that the one issue they missed out on was that women are still not equal in this country. It takes 1, count it 1 state to approve this and yet plays about feminism leave this vital information out.
The show ends with “The Bitch is Back.” they sing in glee. I guess it is ok when we call ourselves that.
Madwomen of the West: The Actors Temple Theatre, 339 West 47th Street through December 31.
“Stereophonic” at Playwrights Horizons Sings Solidly
It’s July 1976, in a recording studio in Sausalito, CA and we are being invited into a space that only a select few get to visit, let alone witness. This is art in the making, pure and simple, with ego and love, getting mixed and faded in through the process most musically. In Playwrights Horizons‘s magnificent new play, Stereophonic, written most delicately by David Adjmi (The Blind King Parts I and II), a band on the cusp of greatness has assembled, and they are tasked, casually and with great intent, to something magnificent and meaningful, a lasting piece of musical art, to follow up their last album that has become, over the timeframe, a breakout hit.
The play is exceptionally well framed and constructed; both musical and meandering, in the best of all possible ways, yet somewhere inside Adjmi’s engaging Stereophonicand its three-hour running time, a deeper level of contextual art formulation is unpacked quite beautifully. It saunters forward, with a complicated level of exhaustion, angst, and inspiration, unearthing something that almost defies expectations and compartmentalization. It’s a 1970s rock saga, clearly modeled on the legendary Fleetwood Mac and their dynamic backstage friction, that leans into and plays with the problematic relationships within this unnamed band as they try to create magic behind a glass wall, while also trying to fulfill their emotional needs in the confines of the studio and real life.
It’s all emotional breakups and reconciliations, with a layer of bored and sleep-deprived banter; around a broken coffee machine and the annoying reverberations of (not only) the drum. It’s electric and conflictual, playing havoc on every one of these characters’ insecure hearts, while offering up no grand solutions or final product. Stereophonic is all about the tiny details and the little frustrations that grow and become emotional cannonballs bent on destruction, leveled and defused out of an undercurrent of love and need for creation. It is incandescent in its artful construction, displaying and writing about a realm few of us can understand. It’s the agony and ecstasy that lives and sings inside the magnificent creative process of musicians, arts, singers, and writers, who hear aspects that most of us can’t understand, let alone hear or comprehend. And we have been invited in, to bear witness to its creation, in all its meticulously dull and exhausting detail. Giving light to the darkness of the process, and how art can both create and destroy those involved in its coming to life.
Countdown to Christmas: For The Dancer and Theatre Lover Chita Rivera
2o days to go! Every year people panic to find the perfect gift. We at T2C have been collecting idea’s all year long to bring you the perfect gift guide at all price levels. When you’re at the end of your rope trying to find the perfect Christmas present this year, come to this guide for some great suggestions.
There are a lot of books out there this year but we highly recommend Chita: A Memoir , the critically-acclaimed book is written by the legendary Broadway icon Chita Rivera with arts journalist Patrick Pacheco. Chita takes fans behind-the-scenes of all her shows and cabaret acts, she shares candid stories of her many colleagues, friends, and lovers. She speaks with empathy and hindsight of her deep associations with complicated geniuses like Fosse and Robbins, as well as with the mega-talent Liza Minnelli, with whom she co-starred in The Rink. She openly discusses her affair with Sammy Davis, Jr. as well as her marriage to Tony Mordente and her subsequent off-the-radar relationships. Chita revisits the terrible car accident that threatened to end her career as a dancer forever. Center stage to Chita’s story are John Kander and Fred Ebb, the songwriters and dear friends indelibly tied to her career through some of her most enduring work: Chicago, The Rink, Kiss of the Spider Woman, and The Visit.
Chita’s love of performing began as a child in Washington, D.C., when her mother enrolled her in a local ballet school to channel her boundless energy. Still a teenager, she moved to New York to attend the School of American Ballet after an audition for George Balanchine himself and winning a scholarship. But Broadway beckoned, and by twenty she was appearing in the choruses of Golden Age shows like Guys and Dolls and Can-Can. In the latter, she received special encouragement from its star Gwen Verdon, forging a personal and professional friendship that would help shape her career. The groundbreaking West Side Story brought her into the orbit of Leonard Bernstein, Jerome Robbins, Arthur Laurents, Hal Prince, and Stephen Sondheim. After Bye Bye Birdie further burnished her rising star, she reunited with Verdon and her then-husband Bob Fosse to work on the film version of Sweet Charity and the celebrated original Broadway production of Chicago.
Chita: A Memoir was published in English and Spanish and the English audio version of the Memoir was recorded by Chita. A Spanish audio version is also available.
“Chita Rivera blazed a trail where none existed so the rest of us could see a path forward. She has been part of some of the greatest musicals in the history of the form, from Anita in the trailblazing West Side Story through Claire Zachanassian in the underrated masterpiece The Visit, over 60 years later. She is a Puerto Rican Broadway icon and the original ‘triple threat.’ We’re so lucky to be alive in the same timeline as Chita Rivera.” — Lin-Manuel Miranda.
“A frank and fascinating memoir from one of the truly great artists of the American Theater. Lots of stories … Lots of insight … and quite a few caustic statements from Chita’s alter ego, Dolores. An illuminating history and a guaranteed pleasure!” — John Kander
Broadway legend and national treasure Chita Rivera, multi-Tony Award winner, Kennedy Center honoree, and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom – has taken no prisoners on stage or screen for seven decades. From her trailblazing performance as the original Anita in West Side Story—for which she tapped her own Puerto Rican roots—to her haunting 2015 star turn in The Visit. Chita has proven to be much more than just a captivating dancer, singer, and actress beloved by audiences and casts alike. In her equally captivating and one-of-a-kind memoir, Written with Patrick Pacheco, the woman born Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero shares an incomparable life, both on stage and behind the curtain.
By the way this Memoir has won a Gold Medal for “Best Autobiography – English” at the 2023 International Latino Book Awards. https://www.latinobookawards.org/
Click here to buy your copy.
My View: IT’S TOUGH TO SWING LIKE FRANK….THIS TOUGH GUY CAN…..ROBERT DAVI
The atmosphere in The Boca Black Box was akin to The Sands Hotel in Las Vegas last night as movie/TV star Robert Davi (140 films and counting) swaggered onto the stage to sing and swing the songs of Frank Sinatra. His show, titled “My Kind Of Town” had all the elements of a Sinatra event thanks to Davi’s personality which radiates the same mystique and musical excitement that ‘Ol Blue Eyes” possessed. Robert Davi’s performance was not a great actor acting a role… this was Robert Davi, a great actor who started his career as a trained singer thrilling an audience singing songs made famous by Frank Sinatra, but with Davi’s own magnetism and vocal prowess. I don’t know if Sinatra ever played Boca Raton but Robert Davi turned Boca into ‘his kind of town last night” as he brought the musical substance and charisma of “the chairman of the board” to South Florida.
Davi’s had a long and distinguished career in show business and this Boca Black Box audience got to see a lot of the musical part of it last night. The tough guy movie actor sang the music of Frank swinging it “his way”
About Robert Davi:
Robert Davi, an American actor, singer, writer, and producer has played the roles of main villain and drug lord Franz Sanchez in the 1989 James Bond film License to Kill. He was FBI Special Agent Bailey Malone in the NBC television series Proflier. He played a Vietnam veteran and FBI Special Agent Big Johnson in Die Hard. Davi played the opera-singing heavy Jake Fratelli in The goonies, Hans Zarba in Son of the Pink Panther and Al Torres in Showgirls. His album, Davi Sings Sinatra—On The Road to Romance, hit #6 on the Billboard jazz charts. Praised for his voice, Davi debuted as a headliner at The Venetian, in Las Vegas.
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