One of the great things about a California Thanksgiving is that the weather is usually nice enough to have the feast outdoors. If you happen to have an outdoor kitchen, that makes the logistics that much simpler. The key to the success of an outdoor celebration is good planning. Start a week or so before the big day and map out how the tables should be set up and how you plan to decorate them. This gives you enough time to make any necessary purchases without feeling rushed. If you’re having a big crowd, consider renting tables, linens, and dishes. It’s not too expensive, and the great thing about rentals is that you get to return everything dirty. You only have to wash your own pots and pans and serving dishes.
Be sure to think about how you need to use the oven so that everything is warm and ready to serve at the same time. This is where an outdoor kitchen can be a lifesaver. The turkey can bake in the inside oven, while the stuffing and side dishes are warming outside. Be sure to have drinks and appetizers for guests outside, so everyone can soak up the November sunshine. After dinner, light a bonfire and enjoy dessert.