Going on a Picnic!

Summer is for eating outdoors

What a fun adventure it is to take a picnic lunch to the park or beach on a beautiful day. Everything tastes better when you’re eating it surrounded by nature and some friends. If you don’t have the ability to take the kids very far, even an outdoor area or yard can be transformed for a summer lunch with a few blankets or tablecloths.

Here are a few ideas for what to bring:

  • A tablecloth and/or blanket. To provide a clean surface, spread a tablecloth on a picnic table. If there are no tables spread a blanket on the ground and then place the tablecloth on the blanket.
  • Frisbee, balls and other activities. Work up an appetite before eating by doing some structured and unstructured games.
  • Sun protection. Be prepared for limited shade and bring an umbrella or pop-up tent, hats, light/long-sleeved shirts and lots of sunscreen.
  • Sanitizer/wipes. In case there is a lack of running water, bring hand sanitizer and antibacterial wipes for before and after eating.

Don’t forget the good food!

  • Veggies & fruit can still make up half your plate, even on a picnic, and are so refreshing on a hot day! Bring along a big platter to share or have everyone contribute a different type of cut-up produce.
  • Protein foods like meat, poultry, fish, eggs and dairy are the higher risk items on a hot day. Be sure these foods are kept cold with ice packs and not left out for more than 1 hour. Safer protein foods are legumes (beans, peas and lentils) so pack some hummus or black bean dip to enjoy with the veggie platter.
  • Drink up. Make water the drink of choice and bring at least 0.5 litre per child.
  • Pack it out. Be sure to leave your picnic spot cleaner than you found it by picking up any garbage, compost and recycling.

Food safety is always important on a picnic

Check out our resource and HealthLink BC to keep your picnic foods safe from food-borne illnesses: https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/health-feature/summer-food-safety