As the unofficial start of summer, Memorial Day weekend is the perfect time to gather family and friends for a fun getaway at the lake. Here are the essential must-haves to ensure your trip is nothing short of perfect.

Comfortable Seating and Shade

Relaxation is key, so make sure to pack plenty of comfortable seating options. Portable camping chairs, hammocks, and inflatable loungers are perfect for lounging by the water. Don't forget a sturdy, large umbrella or a pop-up canopy to provide shade during the sunniest parts of the day.

Water Gear and Entertainment

No lake trip is complete without some fun on the water. Bring along kayaks, paddleboards, and inflatable tubes for hours of entertainment on the water. A small motorboat or jet skis can enhance your experience. For the kids, pack water guns, floaties, or a beach ball.

Grilling Essentials

A Memorial Day BBQ is a must. Ensure you have a portable grill along with all the grilling essentials: charcoal or propane, grilling utensils, and plenty of fuel. Prepare easy-to-grill foods like burgers, hot dogs, and kebabs, and don’t forget the sides like potato salad, corn on the cob, and chips.

Food and Drinks

Stock up on plenty of snacks and drinks to keep everyone satisfied. Think trail mix, fresh fruit, sandwiches, and cookies. Stay hydrated with bottled water, but also bring coolers filled with soft drinks, beer, and a signature cocktail like spiked lemonade or sangria.

Safety Gear

Safety should always be a priority. Ensure you have enough life jackets for everyone, especially if you’re engaging in water activities. A first aid kit is essential for minor injuries. Don’t forget sunscreen, insect repellent, and a wide-brimmed hat to protect from the sun.


Besides water activities, bring along items for lakeside leisure. A portable Bluetooth speaker and a curated playlist can create the perfect lakeside feel. Pack a deck of cards, a frisbee, or a fishing rod for those who enjoy fishing.

Cover Photo by Nir Himi