Summer is here and along with it comes a desire for the great outdoors. Not just a craving for walking, biking, running and hiking, but also for a less active pleasure – a simple meal. What could be better than a picnic by a river or lake, in a meadow, on a park bench or just in the backyard. 

According to Merriam-Webster, a picnic is defined as an excursion or outing with food usually provided by members of the group and eaten in the open. That definition surely does not make picnics sound that enjoyable. But, we all know they are.

July is National Picnic Month which was founded by the American Bakers’ Association in 1952.

How should you celebrate National Picnic Month? It’s simple. Just go out and enjoy some wonderful food in the great outdoors. It’s best to keep the meals simple so you can focus on the social aspect of a picnic. Salads using fresh ingredients, sandwiches of any kind, and finger foods are usual picnic items. And, don’t forget fruit – strawberries, blueberries, peaches, oranges, bananas, grapes and of course watermelon. Some of the best fruits are available during these summer months.  

Throughout the centuries, picnics have been used for many occasions. In fact back in 1989, there was a peaceful protest in the Pan-European Picnic, which was held on the Hungarian/Austrian border. The Picnic was a political, symbolic gathering right by the border fence, a show of support for a Europe free of barriers. Perhaps the most notable, and largest, picnic ever held spanned 600 miles, crossing France and celebrating the millennium’s first Bastille Day in 2000. 

There is a beautiful world out there just waiting for us to take advantage of it.  Now that summer is here, we’re reminded just how much time we’ve been locked inside. So go – it’s picnic time.