10 Fun Ways to Celebrate the First Day of Summer Latino-Style

Latina posing for photo with sunglasses

June 20th marks the first day of summer, so it’s official, the heat and sunshine are finally here! It’s also the longest day of the year, so you better get the most out of it. “How?” we hear you ask. Well, we have quite a few ideas to help you kick off the summer on the right note and with a bit of Latino flair. Here are 10 fun ways to celebrate the first day of summer:

Host a backyard parrillada (BBQ)

barbecue in the backyardPhoto by Z Grills Australia on Unsplash

Nothing says summer like a sizzling parrillada (BBQ) in the backyard. Gather your family and friends, fire up the grill, and cook up some carne asada, chorizos, and pollo adobado. Don’t forget the side dishes like guacamole, salsa, chimichurri, cilantro lime rice, pasta salad, and elote (grilled corn). It’s a delicious way to bring everyone together and kick off the summer with good company, a full belly, and lots of laughs.

Head to the beach

two women playing volleyball on seashorePhoto by Omar Lopez on Unsplash

If you’re lucky enough to live within driving distance of a beach, the first day of summer is the right excuse to head on over. Don’t forget the quintessential Latino beach foods, such as ceviche, empanadas, and deviled ham spread sandwiches. To stay cool and fresh, bring some limonada, aguas frescas, or mocktails. A cooler of beers is also essential for adults, just make sure there’s a designated driver. Of course, we don’t have to tell you to charge up your Bluetooth speaker and get your reggaeton, salsa, and bachata playlist ready.

Dance party under the stars

silhouette of woman running during golden hourPhoto by Javier Allegue Barros on Unsplash

Not everyone loves the sunshine and heat. If you’re one of those people, but you still want to start your summer on the right foot, why not organize a dance party under the stars? Set up a little dance floor in your backyard or local park, create some ambiance with fairy lights, create a playlist with your favorite Latino hits, and invite your family and friends over. Whether you prefer reggaeton, merengue, cumbia, salsa, etc., let your mood lead the way.

Set up an outdoor movie night

an outdoor movie nightPhoto by Roberto Nickson on Unsplash

If you’re not in a dancing mood, another alternative would be to set up your own outdoor movie night. There are plenty of Latin American movies to choose from that will make for a great time. We recommend a good comedy, like “Champions,” or you can choose a few options and poll your guests in a group chat. Of course, there should be a lot of snacks. Consider nachos, chips and guacamole, or an assortment of salsas, popcorn, etc. It’s also a good idea to have your guests bring their favorite foods or drinks to share.

Intimate cooking class at home

smiling man standing and mixing near woman in kitchen area of the housePhoto by Odiseo Castrejon on Unsplash

If food is your love language, having an intimate cooking class at home can be the perfect way to welcome the summer. Choose a Latino dish like arepas, empanadas, tacos, Mexican tortas, etc., and make a nice evening out of it. The great thing about these dishes is that you can have variety, so everyone can have a hand in cooking and loving the final result.

A hike and a picnic

silhouette photo of three person near tall treesPhoto by photo nic on Unsplash

The first day of summer is a great opportunity to reconnect with nature, so going on a hike and ending it with a picnic can feel like heaven. Make sure to choose a trail that suits everyone's fitness level and pack the kind of picnic you won’t be able to stop thinking about. We’re talking Latino-inspired cheese platter with manchego cheese, guava, mango, etc., horchata or aguas frescas, arroz con leche, reina pepiada chicken salad, taco salad, and much more.

Plan a music jam session

a woman standing next to a yellow car with a music instrumentPhoto by Stas Ostrikov on Unsplash

Music is magical when it comes to creating the right ambiance, bringing people together, and just lifting everyone’s spirits. That’s why planning a jam session just feels right if you’re a musician or play instruments as a hobby and so do your friends or family members. It can be an outdoor get-together if you have the backyard space for it, but indoors still works. Get everyone together with their instruments and welcome the summer playing covers of your favorite Latino songs.

Go on a street food tour

people sitting on chair in restaurantPhoto by Syed Ahmad on Unsplash

Going on a street food tour is not only a delicious way to welcome the summer and have a great time, but it’s also a way to help local small businesses. We recommend you focus on Latino-owned food vendors because they offer authentic food that won’t break the bank. This is also a great way to celebrate your Latino culture and also share it with friends through food.

Give your garden some love

woman in red and blue floral dress holding green plant during daytimePhoto by Mary Jane Duford on Unsplash

You should be giving your garden some love year-round, but it’s particularly important during summer. Not only do you want your plants to look their best, but you also need to make sure they survive the heat. Plus, a summer garden looks lush and beautiful, so it’s something you’ll be proud to show off. Put whatever Latino gardening wisdom you have to good use and grow your own herbs and veggies to make your food even more delicious.

Volunteer in the community

group of people working as volunteers for the communityPhoto by Joel Muniz on Unsplash

Last but not least, giving back is a great way to welcome the summer on the right foot. Summer is all about connecting to the people you love, but it’s also about being an active part of the community. Summer is quite a busy month in any community, so making donations or lending a hand on the first day of summer can make a positive difference and also set the tone for a fulfilling season.

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