Fruit adds a refreshing burst of sweet juice to a party menu. Forget the boring “fruit in a bowl” ideas because the best thing about serving fruit is that you can get creative. Colorful and healthy, fruit is versatile in terms of preparation and presentation.

Watermelon Basket

Of the many ways to carve a watermelon, the quickest is to make it into a simple basket. Place a watermelon on its side. Use a pen to trace the shape of a basket brim and handle across the top one-third of the watermelon. Cut the shapes out, leaving the handle intact. Carve out the inside watermelon to form an empty basket. Cut a small section of rind from the bottom of the basket to give it a flat surface on which to sit. Use watermelon, cantaloupe and honeydew cubes to fill the basket with lightly flavored fruits. Add red grapes, cherries and blueberries for a burst of strong color and flavor.

Fruit Skewer Flower

Heat up the grill to create fruit skewers that are sweet enough to be dessert and hearty enough to be a side dish. Cut any stone fruit in half. Stone fruits are those with a large pit, such as peaches and apricots. Remove the pit from the halves. Slide three halves onto a metal or water-soaked wooden skewer. Sprinkle the fruit with whatever you desire, such as brown sugar or cinnamon. Grill the fruits, skin side up, for a few minutes. Remove the fruit from the grill and place it on a round serving tray. Arrange the skewers vertically so they radiate from the center of the tray, like petals on a flower. Place a small handful of bright berries, such as cherries, to the center of the tray to serve as the center of the flower.

Fruit Bouquet

An edible fruit bouquet is a colorful and tasty party food that doubles as a centerpiece. Fill wooden skewers with alternating pieces of bite-size fruit, such as grapes, cantaloupe balls and honeydew balls. Cut a small flower shape from a slice of pineapple and top each skewer with a pineapple flower. Slide a grape onto each skewer to serve as the flower center. Leave a few skewers without flowers to serve as “filler” material for the bouquet. Arrange the skewers into a round bouquet shape in a large vase or basket with a wide mouth, using the filler as needed. Glue a piece of foam to the bottom of the vase or basket if you need help getting the skewers to stick upright.

Pineapple Faces

Large, round slices of ripe pineapple provide the perfect canvas to create clownish faces. Place a thin banana slice where each eye should be and gently press your thumb into the middle of the slice. Place a blueberry eyeball into the indent. Rest a half cherry where you would find the nose and use a half slice of a small orange to create a smiling mouth. Arrange several of the faces on a dark colored tray so the bright hues of the fruit stand out.