For Bart’s 40th birthday last year, we got an outdoor movie projector and screen.
He LOVES movies, plus we wanted more fun ways to spend time together as a family at home, so it felt like a really fun investment.
And it was FANTASTIC.
We had the best time using it all summer long; we had Bart’s whole family over for an end-of-summer movie night, we moved several of our weekly Friday movie nights outside, and Ella invited a few friends over for a birthday movie evening.
We even took it to Bear Lake for my family reunion and set it up in the backyard after the kids went to bed!
It takes a movie from being a fairly run-of-the-mill activity to a truly fun and memorable experience.
Now that the weather is finally warming up, we’re thrilled to be able to start using it again!
If you’re in the market for an outdoor movie projector and screen, here’s a rundown of what we have:
Our Outdoor Movie Projector and screen Setup
VANKYO projector. This is our primary outdoor project – it’s brighter so we can start a bit earlier (but to be honest, almost any projector that doesn’t cost a fortune is going to require a fair amount of dimness). You’ll also need to hook it up to a speaker system and a DVD player or laptop or phone. (The exact projector that we have is currently unavailable, but the one that is linked is similar and has excellent reviews.)
Inflatable Projection Screen. We have the bigger one and there is also a 14 foot one. They fold up amazingly small and are super easy to set up. The fan needs to stay on the whole time, so you’ll need an electricity source (e.g. an extension cord). The fan is quiet and we didn’t notice it at all.
Bluetooth Speaker. The first time we did an outdoor movie, we used our Bose bluetooth speaker and it just wasn’t loud enough. We ordered the 15 inch ones and it makes for a much more enjoyable audio experience. (We always face them away from our neighbors’ house and they’ve never complained about it).
Google Chromecast. We have one of these for each of our TVs and we LOVE it – it makes it so easy to cast anything from your phone to your TV.
Folding table. You’ll definitely want a table to set the project on (and a small speaker if you’re using one). We just have an inexpensive one and it’s great to have a central spot to hold not only the projector but also snacks, bug spray, water, and other miscellaneous items.
Any questions about our outdoor movie project and setup? I’m happy to answer!