5 must-have items for your picnic basket3

5 must-have items for your picnic basket

Ontario’s provincial parks all offer FREE day-use on July 21, 2017, and our parks have all sorts of events planned, from treasure hunts to zumba to campfire singalongs!

And all that fun is sure to make you hungry.

Whether a romantic tête–à–tête by the river or a family reunion on the beach, Healthy Parks, Healthy People Day is a picnic-perfect event.

Think about it: how long has it been since your last picnic?

Pack these 5 items to ensure your next al fresco adventure’s deliciously fun:

1. Coolers

soft coolers

Soft coolers are great for picnicking. They’re lighter, easy-to-carry, and include pockets for extra storage.

Though not as tough as hard coolers, high-performance soft coolers provide 24 hours of cooling ice retention in 90 degree heat!

wheeled coolerThat said, if you’re feeding a horde, you’ll likely need a hard cooler. Coolers like this 50 Quart Xtreme can hold two-litre bottle upright (no spills!), or up to 84 cans. You can even take a break on its have-a-seat lid!

Need some “how to pack a cooler” tips? Check out this Learn to Camp video.

Pro-tip: pick up a cooler with wheels so you can save your energy for the fun stuff!

2. Jugsantimicrobial jugs

There’s nothing like the convenience of taking your beverages with you on the go!

Beverage jugs might be the perfect addition to your outdoor gear. Their handles make them easy to carry, while their leak-resistant, flip-top spouts make pouring (or sipping!) a breeze.

Bonus: these jugs are antimicrobial, resisting odour, mold, mildew and fungus.

3. Stoves

Some of us have a more gourmet picnic style. Coleman stoves and grills help bring your kitchen outdoors.

Why not add flavor to your outdoor cooking with a HyperFlame Stove? The innovative burners and pan supports block wind from all directions.

Here’s a preview:

Bonus: The interchangeable cooktops, such as grill grates and griddles, make it easy to switch up your culinary repertoire.

4. Gameslawn darts and bean bag toss

It’s not a picnic if we’re not having fun! Keep the kids entertained while dinner’s cooking or get your friends together for a high-stakes tournament.

Lawn darts (no sharp points!) and bean-bag toss are both great options. They’ve got carry cases for easy portability and compact storage.

Even better, they’re inclusive, ensuring everyone in your family — from toddlers to grandparents — can join the fun!

5. The food!

Spicing up your menu? Coleman’s Recipe Central will tickle your tastebuds.

When we visit the parks, we love exploring the area, winding our way down backcountry roads and popping into farm stands to stock our coolers along the way. Check out these six Edible Adventures to inspire your next trip!

Or get creative with your next recipe:

Pro-tip: Prefer to bring your cookbook on the go? There’s an app for that.

Now that you’re all packed, the only thing left to do is to decide which park has the best picnic spot. Bon appetit!