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5 summer picnic plans around Lakeland, Florida

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Two people enjoying a picnic

If you don’t have a traditional basket on hand, a reusable tote or cooler bag can work as a substitute | Photo via Pexels

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Memorial Day — the unofficial start of summer — is right around the corner. It’s a great time to take advantage of our natural surroundings and start planning for an outdoor picnic. All you’ll need is a blanket, a good book, some music and, of course, some good food + drinks.

Not sure what to pack for a snack? From build-your-own charcuterie boards to made-to-order wraps and sandwiches, here are 5 expert ways to craft a picnic basket, courtesy of the local food + drink pros at GreenWise Market.

For the charcuterie connoisseur:

GreenWise’s FINDS section is filled with specialty cheeses from around the world. Their team of cheese experts can help you select the right cheeses + accompaniments — like sausage, salami, olives, and artisan crackers — to fill a charcuterie-focused picnic basket.

#ProTip: Sampling is back, if you’re unsure about a new cheese, try it before you buy it. And don’t forget to ask the team to recommend which wine or kombucha to pair with your basket selections.

For the wellness guru:

Green smoothie

This green smoothie features pineapples, bananas, oranges + spinach | Photo via GreenWise Market

Some hot Lakeland days call for a refreshingand healthyoption. Before heading down to one of our picnic spot recommendations, swing by GreenWise Market’s POURS section to pick up a freshly made açaí bowl or a fruit smoothie made with fresh ingredients like strawberries, pineapple, kiwi, granola + more. See this Keto smoothie hack from reader @chrisahinojosa.

#ProTip: The POURS bar has fresh kombucha on tap to bottle + pack in your bag, too.

For the sandwich specialist:

Sandwich with a smoothie and guacamole

Pick up a pack of tortilla chips and fresh guacamole to complete a meal | Photo provided

A handcrafted sandwich filled with smoked brisket? Yes, please. From a classic BLT to smoked turkey sammy, the sandwich creations at GreenWise Market are made-to-order using fresh ingredients. See the full selection here. Pair it with your fav bag of chips or gluten-free puffs — and don’t forget the bubbly.

#ProTip: Try toasting a sub or getting it pressed like a panini. Delicioso.

For the convenience lover:

Bowls are a great option that combines convenience + varietyand they don’t require additional serveware. Get fresh burrito bowls (bonus: guac isn’t extra), Asian-inspired bowls, and even pasta bowls made right in front of you in-store.

For the snackers:

Sometimes you want a variety of snacks instead of a full meal. Fill a picnic basket with freshly-popped popcorn (that comes in fun flavors like cheddar or caramel), chips, or trail mix for a light picnic.

Need any help? GreenWise Market’s team of food + wine specialists can help you find the best items to complete your perfect picnic pairings — just ask a team member for their recommendations when browsing.

Where to picnic:

Watch Lakeland’s iconic swans at Lake Morton.

Lakeland swans

Photo via @catapultlkld

Take the dog for a walk and picnic at Lake Mirror.

Puppy by the lake

Photo via @pinathepei

Lake Hunter provides the perfect backdrop for a romantic sunset picnic.

Lake Hunter at sunset

Photo via @julio__garza

Enjoy a front seat view of watersports like kayaking and canoeing at City of Lakeland’s first outdoor recreation complex at Lake Crago Park.

Lake Crago Park

Photo via @thelaltoday

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