Guest post from Leigh Ann Dutton
I remember a time when we knew who lived next door, up the street, and around the corner. Summer was a great time for playing with friends, having a neighborhood BBQ, and picnics. There was always something fun to do right next door. Unfortunately, with time, this tradition has changed. We rarely take time to get to know the people right in our own back yard.
Recently, we moved 1,500 across the country to take my husband’s dream job. We moved into a very quaint, lively neighborhood, full of families galore. Hosting a pancake breakfast in our home will be a great way to meet our new neighbors!
Maybe you want to have a pancake breakfast too, but don’t know where to start. Well, you’ve come to the right place. If nothing else, you’re about to score some really amazing hot cake recipes!
How to Host a Neighborhood Pancake Breakfast
There are several ways to get the word out that you have free food! You can use flyers, word of mouth, or really fun invitations.
Honestly? Each time we send out the invitations, we don’t expect a single person to show. However, we are always amazed at how many people cannot pass up free food, especially pancakes.
There really isn’t a lot of decorating you need to do for a pancake breakfast, but there are some questions you need to ask to ensure your home is hospitable to a lot of guests.
- Where will the kids sit?
- Is there space outside for your party?
- Do we need to rearrange furniture?
- Where should the food be served?
- Will we serve the pancakes, or have a buffet style, serve yourself?
- What drinks will we offer?
- Do we need extra pitchers?
- What little details can I incorporate to help guests feel at home?
- Where will the coats and purses be stored?
Think through the overall flow of the morning for your guests from the time they walk in the door to the time they leave. How can you best organize your home to make them feel most comfortable?
This is the most important part. This is why they showed up. They’re hungry! Below are some of our favorite recipes along with a few tips and tricks.
Mix all the dry ingredients the night before. I usually mix up several batches and store them in gallon plastic bags. Then, I clean my entire kitchen, and take out everything that will not be used the next day (e.g., spice rack, knife stand, microwave, etc). Whatever is sitting on my counter, we store it in a guest bedroom or some other location. This gives us plenty of room to work. And don’t forget to pull out your pancake griddle, if you have one. If you don’t, I did pancake breakfast for years just over my stove in a little frying pan.
Whole Wheat Pancakes – We go light on the sugar. And for the record, I have never had a single complaint about my pancakes being whole wheat!
Pancake Apples are a great idea if you want some variation.
If you have pancakes leftover, no worries! Pancakes freeze well.
It is far cheaper to make your syrup than it is to buy it when you’re cooking for a larger group. Plus, by making your pancake syrup you’re eliminating high fructose corn syrup. I always make my syrup a few days before and store in glass jars in the refrigerator.
Coffee & Tea
Homemade Coffee Creamer & Sugar for those who don’t take their coffee black.
In my experience, orange juice is the only popular choice. Every other juice gets passed over.
If it’s nice outside, setting up some yard games like horse shoes or ladder ball is a great way to get people to interact and have fun. In addition, sidewalk chalk and homemade soap bubbles are fun for the children.
If you’re inside, a few decks of cards or over-sized checkers make for great fun. We’ve had some amazingly competitive checker tournaments taking place in years past. I also keep several children’s books in a basket for the younger ones.
Just be sure you have plenty of plates, napkins, utensils, and cups on hand and you’re all set to host your very own pancake breakfast! It’s a great Saturday morning activity for summertime!
What tips would you add for hosting a neighborhood pancake breakfast?
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