Want to host a movie night that your friends and family will never forget? A dive-in movie experience will make your swimming pool the envy of the neighborhood. With little more than a projector and a laptop, your get-together can go from ordinary to unforgettable. Whether watching with your family or hosting the block, the experience is sure to create memories that will last long after summer’s golden glow fades into fall.
First things first, you’ll need a flat surface to project your movie onto. A large, neutral stucco wall will do just fine if you don’t have a projector screen. Another convenient solution is to hang and secure a white sheet so it appears flat and doesn’t flap around in the wind. Make sure that your screen is high enough for your guests to be able to see it without obstruction.
Next, of course, you’ll need a projector. Luckily, quality projectors have come down in price significantly in recent years. Depending on your technical preferences, you can now find a high-performing projector for under $100. If you are buying a projector for the first time, you will want to make sure you have the right cables to link up with your laptop or DVD player. Usually this is HDMI, RCA, or VGA.
You’ll want to make sure you have a safe place to set your projector. It should be somewhere that won’t obstruct your view from your seat, whether that be a pool float or a lounge chair. You could use a table or a dry place on the ground if it’s far enough away from the pool. If you do, adjust your “keystone correction” or framing, to have the image project proportionately.
Most laptop speakers won’t be nearly loud enough, so you will want to attach external speakers. A set of computer speakers from a desktop computer should work. Portable speakers are another possible solution that’s trending lately. They are relatively inexpensive and if you are only going to use them once, they make a great gift. For a little more, you can get a Bluetooth sound bar to place beneath your screen for ultimate convenience and good sound quality.
Complete the aquatic cinema with floats that swimmers can lounge on while taking in the movie magic. And, of course, you’ll want a refreshment stand located near your outdoor kitchen. Try bags of buttered popcorn and a cooler full of old-fashioned soda bottles for a nostalgic twist to complement the old-fashioned feel of your dive-in movie.
You can use a projector calculator (also available as an app for iOS and Android) to determine the correct distance for your projector and audience.
Tie a rope across your pool for your guests to steady themselves if their floats begin to drift.
We recommend using floats with drink holders for maximum convenience and comfort. Floating coolers are inexpensive and can be passed between your guests so that they never have to leave the pool!