Summer is here, and it’s begging for new, innovative ways for us to get together safely and have a blast.
Maybe your bar or restaurant features an awesome outdoor patio, and you’d like to add entertainment that complies with noise regulations? Or you’re wanting to throw a unique event in your backyard for all the friends you haven’t seen in ages, without disturbing the neighbors?
We’ve perfected the art of the Outdoor Movie Night. All it takes are a few easy steps and a little silent disco from yours truly.
- The screen. Sure, you could spend the big bucks on a brand-new projector screen, or you could get creative. Check estate sales, Craigslist, or even Nextdoor for someone’s grandpa’s old slide projector screen. If you’re just testing out the idea, you could even pull a plain white sheet taut across the side of a building, an exterior wall of your home, or on a rigged-up clothesline. Got a neutral, non-textured wall handy nearby? There’s your new movie screen.
- The projector. Again, hit up secondhand opportunities. You don’t have to bet the farm to buy one these days, but know that the more lumens the projector has, the brighter your movie will look. Start at 2,000 lumens and work your way up if you can. Also, make sure whatever input it has matches the device you want to hook up to it. If that doesn’t work out, you can usually buy an adapter that makes your projector and your laptop play nice together.
- The film. Make sure your Wi-Fi has the reach and just plug your laptop into your projector. You could also plug in a Chromecast or Apple TV, which lets you keep your laptop out of harm’s way. Playing a hard-to-find classic that’s not available for streaming? Just hook up a DVD or VHS player to the projector.
- The audio. This is where we come in. Connect a Sound Off transmitter to your laptop via BlueTooth, or plug the transmitter straight into the laptop’s audio jack with the included aux cable. Then hand out some freshly sanitized Sound Off headphones. Each guest has control over their own volume, so every tiny on-screen sigh is perfectly audible, while not being distracted by a drop of external sound. Bonus — you’ll get zero noise complaints from the neighbors. (Want to know more about how this works? You can always drop us a line right here.)
- The menu. For bars or restaurants, you can recommend that guests order early (you’ve been on that prepay game for the past year — you know how this works), so they can get their drinks and snacks right before the show. If you’re hosting movie night at your house, make sure you’re stocked up on popcorn, nachos, sweet treats, and everyone’s favorite drinks. Then spread out some cushions, blankets, or lawn chairs six feet apart, wait till the sun sets, and press Play.