Tips for taking your home entertainment experience to the backyard
In the 1940s, a new type of movie experience captured the fancy of people across the U.S. Called drive-ins, for the first time, these theaters allowed people to experience a popular form of entertainment outdoors.
While drive-in theaters have largely disappeared, the concept of watching movies outdoors in a casual setting with friends and food still has lots of appeal. As a result, today more people are creating a dedicated outdoor TV viewing space in their backyards.
The right TV
An outdoor viewing experience starts with a quality television. Because of the exposure to wind, dust and other elements, using a regular TV designed for an interior living space is not recommended. An online search for outdoor TVs produces models ranging from $500 to well into the thousands, depending on size and features. Even with a TV designed for the great outdoors, you’ll want a cover to protect it from dirt and moisture when not in use.
And to get the maximum benefit from a great TV, you should pair it with CenturyLink’s Prism TV with a wireless set-top box. As long as you have an electrical outlet, you can put the TV almost anywhere you want because you don’t need to run cables or wires. If you elect to use a wired connection, you need to make certain power and cables are waterproofed and protected from the elements.
Keep it cool
Your outdoor entertainment space should be cool, both literally and figuratively. The weather is nice now, but before long we’ll be enduring the blazing Arizona summer sun. You can make the space look and feel cool by using tips like adding the right vegetation and fans to keep the air moving. Connecting the outdoor entertainment space to a pool or a water feature also helps keep things cool.
Make some shade
While shade helps keep things cool, with an outdoor television it serves another purpose that is equally important. A shaded area for the TV will reduce the sun’s glare, which otherwise can make any programming on the screen virtually disappear. There are some anti-glare screens available now and the type of shade structure you choose is limited only by your imagination. Pergola covers are a great way to dress up the outdoor space but make sure the materials you choose can stand up to the Arizona sun by using a UV protected fabric.
Light it up
Because the evening is undoubtedly the most popular time for entertaining, lighting becomes an important element in any outdoor area. Lighting also plays an important role as a safety issue.
“Lighting every step and grade change not only gives a festive ambiance, it ensures that there will be no accidents, particularly with stiletto heels,” explains landscapingnetwork.com. “Augment this with mood lighting, but only after you’ve made sure edges, curbs or obstacles are fully visible after dark.”
There are many creative ideas for incorporating built-in seating to the landscaping of your outdoor living space. To make the most of your outdoor entertainment area, it needs to be a comfortable space. You certainly can use folding chairs or drag your dining room chairs outdoors to provide seating, but the area will probably get more use if you have a dedicated seating area.