Summer can pose a problem for families in search for new and fun things to do. So much free time can lead to boredom. Finding fun, inexpensive, and innovative ideas that keep everyone interested is hard to do. Lawn games are a perfect way to get the family outside and to spend time together. With so many options, there is a lawn game for everyone to enjoy.
To set up this easy game, begin by painting a “twister board” onto the lawn. It is best to cut a template of a circle out of some leftover cardboard. Use ground marking spray paint on the grass because it washes off easily.
This classic game includes the entire family as well as friends or neighbors. Get a long and sturdy rope, and either some colored tape or marker to mark the center of the rope. Split into two teams and begin pulling. One fun twist to the game is extending the rope across either a stream or water sprinkler. Tug-of-War is not only about strength, but it is also a lot of fun, and there are many variations of the game that can be played.
Frozen T-Shirt Race
This game is easy to set up and even more fun to play. To start, grab a single t-shirt for each player and soak it in water. Once it is thoroughly wet, squeeze out any extra water and fold it up. Place all t-shirts in a plastic bag with wax paper in between the different shirts. When they are completely frozen, distribute the shirts. The winner is the first person who can completely unfold their t-shirt and put it on.
This is a traditional lawn game that the whole family can play together. The net can be set up in any open space. The only materials needed are the net, racquets for each player, and a shuttlecock.
Water Balloon Toss
Grab five different buckets. Set them up in a line on the driveway or pavement. If different sized buckets are used, place the larger ones closer to the start and the smaller ones at the end. Label the closest bucket 25, then the next 50, 75, 100, and 500. Use filled water balloons to toss into the buckets. The winner is the one that can score the most points.
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Bean Bag Ladder Toss
For this game, all that is needed is a step lapper and some bean bags to toss. To start, label each rung of a step ladder with different points. Normally, the top rung will be the highest number. Throw the bags between the rungs to score points.
BAGGO is a classic lawn game that is loved by the whole family. Design a BAGGO board that has a theme that represents the interests of the family. To start, set up the boards opposite from each other. Split the players up into teams of two and give each team four bags. The opponents will alternate the tosses until all of the eight bags are thrown. The team that reaches 21 points first wins the game. Ask friends and neighbors to bring their portable BAGGO boards and set up a BAGGO tournament in your yard.
This game requires a little more preparation, but it will last for many summers to come. Buy several 2x4 boards that can be cut into 48 ½ inch pieces. The boards can be cut by hand or at a local lumber yard. After the pieces are cut, sand the edges so each piece is smooth and can be easily slid across the other pieces. To add some creativity and color, paint the ends in different colors. There is no need to seal the wood because it may cause the wood to stick and the pieces will not slide as easily. Once the project is complete, you can begin playing the game. Store the pieces in a garage during wet weather to prevent warping.
Glow-in-the-Dark Capture the Flag
For fun after the sun goes down, try a different take on a classic game. Divide up family and friends into two teams. Use different glow stick colors as the flags for each team. Give each player two glow bracelets which match the color of their flag. The objective is to find the opposite team's “flag” and bring it back to their side. The winner is the team who successfully captures all of the other team’s flags.
Fill 2-liter soda bottles with water or sand, and use a rubber ball as the bowling ball. Adjust the length of the lane according to the ability and age of the players.
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Slide and Toss
Slip and Slide is a yard activity the whole family has enjoyed for many years. To make it into a game that involves scoring points, gather a tarp, duct tape, and Frisbees. To set up the game, cut different shapes into the tarp and reinforce the shapes with the duct tape. Give different point values to the shapes and then hang the tarp at the end of the slip-n-slide. To play, slide down the slide, stand up, spin around four times and throw Frisbees to gain points. The winner is the person or team with the most points at the end of the game.
This easy and fun game only requires blankets to play. Simply have one person sit on the blanket while the other stands and holds the other end. The winner is the one that can pull their partner across the lawn to the finish line first.
Playground games such as jump rope and hopscotch are fun, too! They can provide hours of outdoor family entertainment and require very few materials.
Summer is an exciting time for creating lifelong memories. Summer entertainment does not have to be expensive and should include the entire family. It can be as simple as making bubbles and hula hooping, to creating competitive games. Whichever activities your family chooses to participate in should be fun!
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