Picnic Gear from the
In these belt-tightening times, people are rediscovering the simple pleasures and your stay-cation might include picnics in the park. If you like the idea of packing a picnic lunch and enjoying it with the kids under a big shade tree by a babbling brook or beside a lake dotted with ducks, dollar stores have plenty of stuff to help you get outfitted for these relaxing outings.
If youre going on a day trip, youll need a cooler and, to help keep things cool in the cooler, youll need a couple of freezer packs or maybe just one large one like the 12 ½ x 11 cooling board we found at Dollarama for $2. The store also carries the smaller sizes for a buck apiece. And to keep your bottle of water or pop cool, try this neoprene bottle bag that cost $1.50.
You can buy a package of three plastic plates for $1 and get a colorful felt-backed plastic tablecloth for $1 to cover a picnic table or opt for this picnic blanket for $2, which is quilted vinyl for easy cleaning and is generously sized at 3.2 x 5.2. Keep the flies off of the salad with a food umbrella for only a buck.
For short jaunts to a neighborhood park you could probably skip the ice packs and carry everything you need in one bag. This sturdy jute bag is 16 x 13 x 6 wide, plenty of room for your picnic plates, glasses, sandwiches, potato salad and drinks. The 6 x 6 pouch on the inside of the bag is perfect for holding the plastic silverware, which comes in a package of 12 pieces for a buck. This large bag is only $2 and would be a great way to haul
toys and towels and to the beach, as well.