Make Sparks Fly: Bonfire Essentials

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Cool late-summer nights call for a little heat, so any excuse is a good excuse to break out the fire pit (or build one) for a good old-fashioned bonfire. Whether it’s in the backyard or on the beach, use these tips to make your end-of-season bonfire party one of a kind.

The Basics

A chunky sweater to cozy up in. This should be heavenly soft and oversized – it should practically demand cuddling.

Hay bales for seating (pick these up at a local farm, equestrian tack shop, or stable yard). Cover them with mixed and matched blankets – we love the look of personalized blankets and throws, like this DIY fleece blanket from Apartment Therapy.

Scatter a few hurricane lanterns around your seating area for picturesque, portable, and safe lighting. Opt for mosquito-repellent candles to keep away those uninvited party guests.

A cooler stocked with your favorite microbrews – Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy (a refreshing, light-bodied honey wheat ale with lemonade) makes the perfect summer drink for relaxing with friends.

The Entertainment

Sparklers: seriously, who isn’t still delighted every time they light one of these? Create your own light graffiti by “drawing” in the air with a sparkler while the shutter of your camera is open (this only works with cameras that have long exposure capabilities, like SLRs).

S’mores cookie bars: this dangerously tasty take on the campfire staple will have people begging for the recipe (better make two batches).

Photo booth: hang a vintage-print sheet from a tree branch or clothing line and set your camera on the self-timer setting so your guests can unabashedly pose away. Provide a few props like dress-up hats and character glasses for people to get creative with.

Now light the fire (don’t forget the kindling) and get ready for a night to remember.

By Grace Romanowsky, Staff Writer

What are your bonfire must-haves? Tell us in the comments below or tweet us @ruelala.

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