The summer is upon us, so that means it’s time to start thinking about 4th of July party ideas. You know it’s summer when you can smell the charcoal grills heating up, hear motorcycle motors revving, and you’re fighting off the mosquitoes biting your ankles (ugh!).

Summer get togethers take a lot of planning, but you can get creative with your decorations and food ideas with our help — and it won’t cost too much!

Turn a basic holiday barbecue into an epic party with these 4th of July party ideas for decorations, food, drinks, and fun. Don’t forget to save on all the things with these deals and coupons:

 

1. Freeze blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries to use in Sprite for a patriotic drink.

Even kids can help with some 4th of July party ideas. Cut up your favorite berries, add them to an empty ice cube tray, and top them with water. You could also use lemonade, a clear soda like Sprite, or make an adult beverage with alcohol, champagne. When it’s time to serve, add these fruity cubes to a beverage of your choice. Just be sure not to give kids the alcoholic one!

Use these soda coupons for extra savings.

 

2. Add food coloring to vases of flowers for a colorful centerpiece.

Party decorations shouldn’t have to cost a lot. Grab a Mason jar or an old can, add water, and blue food coloring. Then, stick in white carnations and red roses (to go with the holiday theme).

More time? Add food coloring to a vase with white flowers the day before to turn them colors! Do one with red and one with blue, then on the day of your party transfer the red, white, and blue flowers to a new vase.

 

3. Shield kids’ hands from sparkler burns with a plastic cup.

Sadly, I know all too well about sparkler burns. My 4-year-old son didn’t believe me when I told him that it was hot, but he picked it up anyway and we had to hear him cry in the car for 20 minutes. Learn from me and make a small hole at the bottom of a Solo cup and slide the sparkler through before burning. Tears are now smiles!

 

 

4. Dip ice cream sandwiches in red, white, and blue sprinkles for a festive 4th of July food idea.

With two simple ingredients — store-bought ice cream sandwiches and red, white, and blue sprinkles — you have a simple dessert to cap off your party. If you want to make them ahead of time, just store them on a cookie sheet in the freezer.

Get good ice cream for cheap with these ice cream coupons.

 

5. Create 4th of July outdoor decorations for your lawn with marking chalk and cardboard.

For this outdoor project, you can create your own stencil or just buy a large star stencil online. Position it where you’d like to decorate your lawn and use marking spray paint in different colors. Easy and festive!

 

 

6. Help kids make holiday party shirts using their handprints.

No party is complete without some DIY holiday gear! Use a plain white T-shirt and fabric paint to make hand blue or red prints or paint alternating blue and red stripes to celebrate.

Did you know that Old Navy sells festive T-shirts every year for $5 each? Find out some ways to bling out your Old Navy shirts.

 

7. Tie red and blue bandanas together for a festive table runner.

Many Dollar Tree stores carry these bandanas, just check your local store for easy savings. Tie the bandanas together — alternating colors — and lay them on your table as a runner. Another decorating idea is to wrap the bandanas around beverage containers, use them as placemats, or assemble utensils inside.

Since you’re already going, you may want to learn how to coupon at Dollar Tree so you can get all the freebies! Aside from the table decor, you could repurpose the bandanas as a tug-of-war game for little kids.

 

 

8. Use a cookie cutter to create watermelon stars.

Cookie cutters aren’t just for sweet treats. Use star-shaped cookie cutters on watermelon or cantaloupe, place them on a small sheet tray, and freeze. Add your stars to Kool-Aid or a blue sports drink like Gatorade.

Another fun 4th of July food idea is to make fruit skewers. Make star shapes with the cookie cutters, slide grapes along the skewer, and finish with your melon star at the end. It’s like an edible sparkler!

 

9. Make a DIY beverage ice pack with frozen water balloons.

Balloons are magical pieces of fun that can also be for practical use. In this case, fill ’em with water, freeze, and now you have a DIY beverage ice pack. When the balloons are completely thawed, have a water balloon fight!

Need a new cooler? Here’s how to find cheap YETI coolers. And, if you’re looking for new ways to use balloons for your party, we gotcha covered.

 

10. Play bean bag toss with decorated cans and socks filled with rice.

Here’s a 4th of July barbecue idea that is easy, fun, and the kids will enjoy. It will keep the kids entertained while you’re cooking or enjoying a cold drink.

Fill a couple of small socks with rice and tie the ends with rubber bands and patriotic ribbon. Then, cover six empty and cleaned 15-ounce cans with red, white, and blue tape, making sure the tape covers any sharp edges.

Set cans up in a pyramid and have kids stand several feet away. Whoever knocks down all the cans within two tries, wins!

10 Easy 4th of July Party Ideas You Must Try