Whether you’ve sizzled through summer, counted the days until autumn’s cool relief, or blissfully soaked up the sun for three months, it’s time to give the season a fond farewell. In order to truly toast summer, the government has conveniently given nearly everyone the day off. Labor Day parties can be some of the best of the year, and it’s easier than ever to throw a vegan celebration that will leave you smiling all the way to the end of daylight saving time. So put your white party pants on one last time and get started!
The summer’s end is the perfect time to move the party outside. If you have a spacious backyard that scorching temperatures have made off-limits for most of the season, Labor Day can be the time to reclaim your land. For activities, consider setting up a badminton or volleyball net, and if you have the room, a white tent is the perfect set-up for a buffet and stereo. If you don’t have the space or are too popular to possibly hold all your friends in one yard, Labor Day presents the perfect opportunity for a block party. Block parties are a great way to involve all the neighbors and an excellent excuse for a potluck to take some of the BBQ burden off your shoulders. Obtain a permit from your local government to block off the street, then gather your neighbors, string some twinkling lights on trees, and you’re in business.
Late-summer fruits and vegetables can be some of the most delicious of the year. For ultimate freshness and to support local farmers, consider incorporating apples, cantaloupes, grapes, huckleberries, potatoes, cucumbers, corn, tomatoes, summer squash, and other seasonally available fruits and veggies into your menu. For an easy, high-volume dish, try grilling some summer veggies into a Balsamic Grilled Salad with Asparagus, Brussels Sprouts, & Onions. Large salads are one of the most delicious, no-fuss dishes to bring to a potluck. For salad with substance, whip up some Antipasto Salad, Mixed Greens with Beets and Walnuts, Marinated Potato Salad, or Dijon Macaroni Salad. Or complement your classic veggie burgers and brats with simple greens, such as a spinach salad to pair with your own homemade Lemon-Nut Dressing. Oh, and did we mention that limes are ripe at the end of summer? Hello, margaritas!
Labor Day Dessert
It won’t be long before the leaves have fallen and it’s far too cold to enjoy one of summer’s best offerings: ice cream. For your shindig, consider setting up an ice cream bar. You can have as little to as many ice cream flavors as you wish, including staples such as sweet strawberry, classic vanilla, or customizable frozen yogurt. Get adventurous with Pineapple Lime Ice, delicious Coffee Chip FroYo, or fun Fruit and Coconut Sundaes. For toppings, pick up some sprinkles and chopped nuts to compliment the Rum Caramel Sauce and Coconut Whipped Cream. If you’re feeling extra decadent, whip up some Frozen Oatmeal Raisin Sandwiches, or take a tip from Chef Chloe with her patriotic ice cream sandwiches. To satisfy those not in the mood for ice cream (if such people exist), an easy Applesauce Cake with Maple Apple Topping will be delicious with fresh apples. All together, your Labor Day soirée will be the cherry on top of a fabulous summer.