Memorial Day is more than a day off from work; it’s a time to remember those lost while serving in the armed forces, a time many choose to celebrate with friends and family in honor of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
With the holiday on the horizon, you might be thinking about hosting a celebration on the lake on a pontoon boat. Because of their size and large decks where guests can dance, play games or mingle with each other, pontoon boats are perfect for hosting parties and having great fun on the water.
Pontoon boat party checklist
If you’ve never hosted a party on a pontoon boat, there are a few things you’ll need to get in order before heading out onto the water for your gala. Here are a few tips:
- Safety is critical for anyone who is out boating but particularly when you have a group people who may not be used to boats. First thing you MUST have is the appropriate number of life jackets for guests and also set some rules for guests to follow.
- Do not overload your boat. If 12 is the maximum number of people allowed, DO NOT exceed that number.
- If you plan to use a grill, make sure it’s stable and never cook until the boat is anchored or in dock. Also, make sure you have a fire extinguisher in case of a fire, along with a first aid kit.
- Don’t use any type of glass while cooking, serving, drinking or eating. Broken glass on a boat can cause all sorts of issues so leave it behind.
- Don’t leave dock without double-checking to make sure you have everything you need for your party. That includes food, plates, cups, utensils, can opener, grilling utensils, containers for leftovers, ice, serving spoons, condiments, salt/pepper, etc.
- You can always prepare food in advance so you don’t have to worry about cooking while on the boat. Things like sandwiches (as long as they’re properly stored) and pasta salads, along with chips are ideal. Make sure you keep uncooked, cold foods in a separate cooler from other items and keep coolers in the shade.
- If you have wine (while docked) don’t forget the corkscrew.
- Bring some board games, cards, a karaoke machine or play charades to liven up the party.
- Decorations for the boat to celebrate Memorial Day, which could include red, white and blue bunting, along with color coordinated napkins, plates, etc.
- Be aware of the wind and don’t use any kind of decorations or tableware that could easily disappear with a gust of wind.
- Once everyone has eaten, you’ll need to have trash bags for clean-up, along with paper towels, hand sanitizer and extra water should someone want to rinse their hands.
- Do your best to eliminate the chances of trash blowing overboard by tying up trash bags and storing them where they won’t be in the way.
- Never drink on the boat until it’s tied up at the dock or moored properly on a beach.
There’s nothing quite as enjoyable as hosting a party with friends and family on the water. Here’s hoping you have a spectacular Memorial Day celebration on your pontoon boat!
And just as a reminder, Carefree Boat Club members have access to a fleet of high-powered luxury pontoons on every lake in the Tri-Cities! Your Memorial Day get-together could be even more enjoyable without having to worry about paying high dock fees or getting your pontoon in and out of the water on one of the busiest ramp days of the season.