Now that the sun is finally back out it’s time to get off of Netflix and out of bed and have an aesthetically pleasing picnic outdoors with your friends.

It may be a TikTok trend, but it’s clearly a trend for a reason. I mean, who doesn’t want to escape reality for a moment and go on a picnic date in the park? It also gives you the chance to take Instagram-worthy photos or make a TikTok compilation that might just go viral. Planning your picnic is one of the best parts of the whole picnic experience.

First, you need to pick your preferred destination. There are many grassy areas around Gonzaga’s campus to lay down a blanket and enjoy your picnic while you people watch and listen to indie music.

There’s a spacious field between Coughlin and Catherine-Monica Hall that is right under the sun so you can get your daily dose of Vitamin D. Herak Lawn, which is in the middle of campus, is also a fantastic place to be in the midst of GU action. Anywhere around Lake Arthur and the Spokane River is also a great spot with a spectacular view. This can be the right spot for you if you want to be a little more excluded in nature. 

If you want to venture off of campus you can head over to Riverfront Park, John A. Finch Arboretum, Riverside State Park or Manito Park. All of these parks are great to go explore and find your own special little spot. If you’re feeling courageous you can also pack a hammock to switch it up a bit if you get tired of sitting on the ground. 

After you pick your perfect destination comes the even better part, what snacks to pack.

Starting with crackers or a baguette is always a wise choice. Simple Mills and Mary Seed crackers are both great choices especially for dipping and adding cheese to them.

Then you get to pick your favorite cheeses, meats, fruits, dips and of course chocolates. Goat and Brie are elite cheese choices that pair perfectly with crackers or bread. When it comes to dips, hummus is always an easy go-to that you can dip almost anything in. Picking out fruit is a personal preference and should be based on what is in season.

Make sure you don’t forget to pack something sweet like chocolate or candied nuts. It’s a necessity to include something that’ll satisfy your sweet tooth. Trader Joe’s always has the perfect selection of snacks that just taste better for some reason. 

Creating a charcuterie board can get a little pricey so if you would rather go the cheaper route then pick a fast food restaurant to supply your perfect meal. Another fun fad that’s fairly inexpensive is getting a cake and using wine glasses to serve it to feel more boujee. Whatever your choice of snacks is, it’s important that you bring some sort of tray to set the food up in an artistic way for pictures. 

Dressing up for your picnic makes the experience feel far more classy. It’s like you time traveled back into the 18th century when picnics were elaborate social gatherings that consisted of intellectual talks and copious amounts of different kinds of dishes.

It also encourages you to grab a Polaroid or a disposable camera to capture the moment and share it with others. This doesn’t mean you need to wear formal clothes but something that makes you feel confident but also comfortable to be outside in. 

Bringing activities and good company to your picnic will never allow for a dull moment. You can bring card games, coloring books, paints and canvases, really whatever you enjoy doing. Playing music while you munch away and have great conversations with friends is priceless. 

Now the final step is to text your friends and get a plan going for your well-deserved picnic retreat. Don’t forget to check the weather forecast because sun is essential in this case. After that, go get planning!

Kelly Coyne is  staff writer.

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