Winter Picnic

winter picnic

Picnics aren’t just for summer!


A winter picnic can be a great way to have fun and connect with others, as well as nature.

When most people think of picnics, they may conjure up lazy summer days sitting in the sun and think, “Why would I ever do that in winter?” It may not be bikini weather, but there are some wonderful things about a winter picnic that can be just as memorable a summer picnic.

In the summer, the grueling heat can not only spoil the mood, but can wreak havoc on food as well. You have to be cognizant of keeping certain perishables cold while battling the sweltering summer sun. With a winter picnic, you have the luxury of a cold environment to transport perishable items. And though you should always observe food safety rules, food can keep a lot better in hard packed snow than sitting on the grass during a hot day.

winter picnicAnother bonus of a winter picnic is you don’t have to worry about the bugs! No swatting away persistent buzzing flies or spraying on tons of repellent. Also, winter provides a way to incorporate the natural elements (snow!) into your picnic activities. If you’re planning more of a social gathering, sledding, building a snow man and snow fights can bring lots of fun and stir up memories of childhoods spent running through the snow. If you’re planning more of an intimate occasion, winter is the perfect setting for a romantic rendezvous.

However, be sure to do a bit of prep work before your big winter picnic. Though a little bit of a chill is expected, plan your picnic on a day that won’t be dangerously cold and doesn’t have an extremely low wind chill factor. Checking your local weather forecasts will keep you apprised of approaching blizzards or snowstorms. You don’t want to be caught unaware, especially if you or your guests are driving some distance to your winter picnic destination.

If you’re going a bit farther than your backyard, pack some essentials to bring with you. In addition to the food items, pack some blankets, throws, pillows and extra hats, gloves, wool socks (cotton soaks up moisture, while wool wicks it away), mittens, and shirts. Bundle up and dress appropriately for the temperature. If it’s a sunny day, be sure to pack some SPF lotion. Even on a cold winter’s day you want protection against sunburns. And if you’re planning on building a fire, play it safe and observe the area’s rules regarding fire activity.

Once you’ve planned these few details you’re ready to enjoy a perfect winter picnic. If you need a few ideas on what to bring as far as food, you can always pack a thermos of hot chocolate (don’t forget the marshmallows!), a hearty soup like beef stew, some cheese and crackers and fruit, or maybe even some sandwiches. If you’re inviting a few friends, you can make it a potluck winter picnic and each person will be responsible for bringing an item. The most important thing to remember is to bring the person or persons that you’ll love spending time with. Now go forth, and have fun!

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Kenya Evans

by Kenya Evans

Special Contributor. Kenya has been a writer for as long as she could remember. A fashionista with a love of the arts, Kenya’s background in social justice inspires her to help make the world a better place, one written word at a time. When not writing, she can be seen on underground stages across Chicago as a tribal belly dancer and classical Indian dance student of Bharatnatyam.