Create a cool outdoor dining room

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Outdoor dining porch wFamilies in the Maryland area are creating cool spaces to eat their meals outside.

When dinnertime arrives for the Moore family of Davidsonville, they head out to their screened-in porch.

“We eat out there all summer long, even into the fall,” says mom Jeanne Moore.

The Moores have furnished their porch with bamboo couches and a dining table for six, along with an antique sideboard and vintage art.

“It was important that it felt more like an extension of the house rather than an outdoor space,” Moore says.

During the summer months and even into the fall, families want to spend as much time outdoors as possible, and that includes mealtime. According to the National Hearth and Barbecue Association, the majority of American adults prefer eating outdoors at home to a meal at a restaurant, citing it as “more relaxing.”

Dining outdoors can be as simple as a picnic in the grass, but more families are taking the time to create welcoming and functional outdoor dining areas that make the most of the warmer weather.

“Homeowners are not just interested in outdoor dining. They want to create an outdoor living space that is comfortable,” says Nancy Rice, department manager of patios and decoratives at Homestead Gardens in Davidsonville. “It’s about expanding the feel of their home outdoors.”

Outdoor dining spaces don’t have to mean budget-busting dining sets or fancy outdoor kitchens. “Accessories can go a long way in creating ambiance,” Rice says. Solar lighting, candles, outdoor pillows and shatterproof dinnerware are easy and inexpensive ways to set the mood.

Click next below for tips on creating an outdoor dining space.

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