The temperatures are rising, the sun is beating stronger every day, and there is only one way to really cool down: by jumping into the pool or the ocean. On these almost unbearably hot summer days wearing anything more than a swimsuit and sunglasses, drinking anything that isn’t ice cold, and eating anything hot or substantial is totally unappealing. That’s why every party from here to Labor Day needs to be by the pool or on the beach. Anything else just isn’t going to be weather-appropriate. Here we explain how to host the ultimate pool and beach parties, covering everything from the practical equipment you’ll need, how to decorate, the best drinks to serve, and what food to cook for the occasion.