Are you looking for inexpensive game ideas for your child’s upcoming birthday or ways to entertain bored youngsters? Or maybe you’re bringing together different groups of friends and looking for crafty ice-breakers? These 25 Fun Outdoor Games For Large Groups will make gatherings for kids and adults alike entertaining and memorable.
From Tiny Tots to Fit Grandparents, These Outdoor Group Games Offer a Ton of Family Fun
If you’re planning a family reunion, you should find unique ways of keeping your guests happy, especially when it comes down to the smallest family members who possess untapped energy supplies and short concentration spans.
While most get-togethers feature ample supplies of food, drink, and backyard music, why not throw an element of fun into the mix to liven up the event with a list of outdoor games for adults and children? That way, when you’re out of things to talk about, want a break from drinking, or need to burn off your meal, you can partake in a myriad of fun family outdoor games to keep the party going.
Capture the Flag
You probably played Capture the flag when you were a kid, and you’ll probably still find it enjoyable today as a fun outdoor game. Unleash your inner child playing this game; you’ll find that the rules haven’t changed much since your childhood. Older children and teenagers, even ones who are addicted to their phones and television, will be lured from their screens with the promise of a competitive round of play.
Here’s a recap on how to play this classic outdoor game
Split your group into teams of two or more. Give each side a flag, or if you don’t have one, a colored piece of material works just fine.
Find a clever hiding spot for the flag in the area you’re playing in, be it in the backyard or a park. Remember that a portion of the flag must be visible, so concealing the flag under rocks or a pile of leaves is against the rules of this particular outdoor group activity.
The point of the game is to find and capture your opponent’s flag and bring it back to safety without getting caught while defending yours. Players are caught when they’re tagged by the opposition tags you or taken prisoner.
If you play using the latter method, prisoners can be ‘uncaught’ when rescued by their fellow team members. The team to bring the flag home wins this outdoor group game.
Add more excitement by playing Capture The Flag at night. Swap out colorful flags and pieces of material for two glowsticks. Although the same rules apply, it’s undoubtedly more challenging in the dark.
Discover twelve new ways to play this much-loved game with Capture The Flag Redux. Click here to buy your next family reunion or team-building event.
Ring toss is another classic outdoors game idea that’s easy-to-teach and provides a whale of a time for all players.
You can make your own by painting glass bottles and using plastic rings or glowsticks lying around the house, or purchase ring toss online if you don’t have the time.
How you play is simple: when it’s your turn, stand four feet away and throw your ring toward the bottles. You should be aiming for the necks of the bottles. The better your aim, the higher your chances of winning are!
To even the score and to prevent unfair advantages due to age and experience, position younger players closer to their target.
Passing around a football is one of the many fun outdoor games for large groups played in most households across America. Put a spin on the much-loved activity by participating in 500.
500 is one of those fun backyard games you can enjoy outside to while away a lazy afternoon or when family comes for a visit. Not only is it fun, but it also gets everyone into the yard, playing one of the best outdoor games, and bonding. It’s also one way of sharpening your catching skills if you like to play football.
How it’s played
One player is nominated as the tosser while the rest of the group are the catchers. The tosser stands on one side of the yard or field while the catchers stand on the other, facing the person with the ball.
The tosser then calls out a number followed by the words ‘dead or alive’. The number refers to points the person who successfully catches the ball scores. While “dead or alive” describes how the ball must be caught, either up in the air and ‘alive,’ or caught on or picked off the ground and ‘dead.’
The person with the most points at the end of the game wins.
Replace your worn-out and deflated football with a new one here.
If you have the time, put together a family Olympic’s day featuring three-legged races, obstacle courses, running relays, and more. Don’t forget to make medals out of candy attached to a ribbon for the winning teams of these large group outdoor games.
Buy your supplies for your next family sports day here.
You might also enjoy our post on Can You Deep Fry a Turkey Indoors?
Outdoor Party Games for Kids: How to Make Their Day Special and Not Break the Bank
If you’re a parent who draws inspiration from Pinterest for innovative snacks, cake, activities, and decoration ideas for children’s birthdays, then you’re not alone.
There seems to be a tremendous amount of pressure on adults to throw their children the best parties on the block featuring expensive party games. Gone are the days where Musical Chairs and a simple, homemade chocolate cake formed part of party norms.
That said, you can get creative with planning your little one’s special day without digging deep into your pockets while hiring out services, such as clowns, jumping castles, ball pits, slip n slide, and life-size Disney cartoon characters. These fun outdoor games for kids will keep children of all ages entertained for hours!
Outdoor Bean Bag Toss
Whether you called it bean bag toss or corn hole, you probably played this game when you were a child, and the good news is that it’s still popular today. It’s a timeless form of entertainment that kids will love! Who knows, you might also want to get involved.
You can easily set up this game in various ways, using ladders, cardboard, saucers, or if you don’t fancy yourself a DIY’er, buy a corn hole set online instead.
Playing the game is easy, get the party-goers to throw bean bags onto ladder rungs, in saucers or holes in boards to score points.
Bucketball toss offers a variation of the game where numbered buckets and softballs are used instead of bean bags and ladder rungs.
Silly Sack Race
Nothing will get a group of energetic youngsters giggling more than having to race against each other while jumping around in a potato sack. This fun outdoor game for kids of all ages will also zap their untapped energy supplies, so you can enjoy some child-free time while your little one’s nap after the party. The first to cross the finish line wins.
Make the event more fun by decorating the sack according to the party’s theme. Use craft glue to stick fabric and other materials in place.
If there aren’t enough potato sacks to go around, a blanket race makes for an excellent alternative garden party game that also requires teamwork. Grab some blankets, partner up, and race to the finish line ahead of your competitors.
These six-piece durable burlap sacks provide hours of the best outdoor family games for kids of all ages and sizes. Learn more here!
Elevated tug of war
The only materials you need for this fun yard game are two crates and a sturdy piece of rope that you can purchase from any home improvement store or online. Two children from opposite teams will stand on the containers and partake in this tug of war with a difference.
To win the game, players must try to force their opponents off the crate by pulling hard against the rope.
Ground rules must be established before play to prevent tears and the game from getting out of control.
You can’t go wrong with this 35-foot tug-o-war rope made from polyester and cotton. Don’t delay, buy it today!
Before you start associating this game with the original, have peace of mind knowing that no bats or hitting is involved with a round of Human Pinata. The game might include some friendly roughhousing and spirited fun, but that’s the extent of it.
Select a few children as human pinatas. They will wear T-shirts taped with candy and chocolate (or whichever treats you prefer), small change, and assorted prizes. The chosen pinatas will be chased by other children, who can reach out and pull off the treats when they get close enough.
The game can get rowdy but poses no danger to children. Make the game more of a challenge by giving the pinatas a head start.
If human pinata makes you nervous as a parent, water pinata might be a more suitable alternative that is perfect for summer parties (your kids will get soaked) and requires minimal effort to set up. Simply hang up the water-filled balloons, and then blindfold the participants, seeing how many balloons they burst open during a set time.
Avoid a last-minute shop for party treats, buy these eye-catching pinata toys, prizes, and party favors online.
Clothespin Tag is a fun and straightforward game that younger children will enjoy. Before play, let each child decorate their own clothespin using colored paper and other craft supplies, such as googly eyes, crayons, sequins and glitter.
Once done, clip the pin onto the backs of their shirts. On the count of three, the game starts, and the players must try and snatch as many pins off others while trying to protect their own. The player who’s collected the most by the end of the game wins a prize!
Personalize kiddies clothespins with glitter, sequins, buttons, and neon-colored chenille pipe cleaners and other arts and crafts.
Kick The Can
Kick the Can is an oldie but a goodie that offers loads of fun and can be played day or night as an outside group game.
How to play
One person is nominated as the jailer who catches people by identifying their hiding spots.
The jailer does this by calling out the person’s name and demands that they come out of hiding. If they call out the wrong name, the player is given a chance to hide again.
The captives are sent to jail, which is usually by the front porch. Prisoners can be freed by other players kicking a can, which is generally positioned near to the prison..
Giant Versions of Board Games (Fun Group Games for Adults)
If you and your group of friends are board game fanatics, then you’ll love these giant-sized versions.
Giant Jenga, Lawn Twister, and Scrabble are becoming all the rage as unique outdoor games. Swap up physical activities for these strategic outdoor competition games that exercise the mind.
The rules of giant Jenga are the same as regular Jenga, which are:
- Stack your wooden tower (some versions stand four-feet tall).
- Taking turns, remove blocks from the bottom layers, and stack them on top. This will become increasingly difficult as the game goes on and will end with a resounding crash when the tower falls.
- The last person to successfully stack a piece wins the game of Jenga.
Jenga is harder than it looks, especially when its stature is larger-than-average. One wrong move could result in the tower tumbling down. To win requires patience, as well as forward and strategic thinking.
Twice the size and double the fun! Buy yours here.
If you haven’t played a game of Scrabble without the board being overturned out of frustration, then you aren’t playing it right. Scrabble is a competitive game enjoyed by wordsmiths and strategic players alike.
The aim of the game is to score the most points by placing crafty words on the board to outsmart your opponent. The person with the most points at the end of the game wins.
Scrabble might be fun, but by keeping you holed up indoors, it’s not always the most social of games, especially when an intense amount of concentration and quiet is needed.
Giant Scrabble forces you to go and play outside in the sunshine. Plus, it is impossible to overturn the board when playing this larger version of Scrabble.
To make your lawn Scrabble set, cover your backyard with pavers, 225 to be exact, and paint the bonus squares in the appropriate colors. You can use wooden plaques as tiles, which should be placed face-down in the surrounding grass during play. Buy them here!
The Memory Game
The memory game is a classic that forces children and adults alike to test their memory and concentration. Take the game outside with this oversized version.
To make your own Memory Game:
- Purchase pieces of poster boards from any craft store and draw matching letters, symbols, or icons on them.
- If you don’t have poster boards, cardboard, rug scraps, or foam is fine to use.
- Cut up the pieces, mix them up, and lay them on the grass face-down. When it’s your turn, match up as many of the cards.
- The person with the most ‘matches’ at the end of the game is the winner.
Giant Pick Up Sticks
Pick up sticks is an old-favorite, typically played by children but offers hours of endless fun for people of all ages.
The standard rules of Pick Up Sticks apply to this new-and-improved variety, only that the sticks are bigger than some children and adult players.
Throw the sticks into a messy pile. Each player tries to pick up a stick without moving any of the others, not even an inch. The person with the most sticks at the end of the game is the champion.
You can make your own by spray painting or painting bamboo sticks or stakes in assorted colors (which is an activity on its own) or buy your lifesize version online.
Create your own game of Twister by painting giant blue, yellow, and green spots on the lawn – these are preferable to floor mats that tend to move around during play. Spray the perfect circle using pizza boxes with cut-out circles as templates or spray freestyle if you have a steady hand.
Keep the row of circles lined up, and the spaces between them the same using a long piece of string for accuracy.
If DIY lawn twister requires too much work, buy a mat here.
Ideas Regarding Outdoor Party Games for Adults
Are you planning an adults-only barbeque or picnic sometime in the future? A good entertainer should do more than provide a couple of six-packs, packets of chips, and the sound system.
You might be bringing strangers together, so you’ll be needing to break the ice somehow. Otherwise, prepare yourself for a night of awkward encounters and guests leaving earlier than you anticipated.
Keep the good times rolling by playing these fun adult outdoor games.
It’s common knowledge that sports unite people, so why not play this all-American favorite in your backyard? If you don’t have space, move the party to a public park where sports are admissible.
Enjoying some competitive fun together is an excellent way of getting to know your teammates and breaking down barriers.
Volleyball is yet another sport that can be enjoyed in a sizeable backyard, and the best part about it is that a net isn’t needed.
However, if you’d like to experience an authentic volleyball game, nets can be purchased here.
Fly Swatter Badminton
If you’re looking for a gentler group game to play with friends and acquaintances but don’t have all the resources, why not give fly swatter badminton a try? You can play the game using fly squatters as rackets and balloons as a ball.
Not just useful in removing bugs. Buy assorted fly swatters here for a makeshift game of badminton in the backyard
Scavenger-hunt: The adult’s edition
A scavenger hunt might sound a bit juvenile for some, but not if you’re playing for a six-pack of cold ones.
Put friendships to the test in highly pressurized situations while finding items on a list, all for the grand prize of your favorite beer or drink of choice.
If your group of friends and family aren’t drinkers but are keen on the idea of a scavenger hunt, nonetheless, perhaps a Spaghetti Scavenger Hunt is more up your alley?
Eating competitions are messy and not always the best of ideas. Instead, hide morsels of food or treats in bowls of cooked spaghetti that participants have to search for using only their mouths. The winner is the person who collects the most items at the end of the hunt.
What items should I place in the spaghetti?
It’s generally a good idea to hide edible things, such as:
- Gummy bears
- Oreo cookies
- Pieces of caramel
- Big lego (smaller pieces could be a choking hazard and should be avoided)
- Chewable treats
Buy your scavenger hunt with a twist here. Suitable for bachelorette parties.
Floating Beer Pong
Playing beer pong might remind you of your fraternity days, but floating beer pong is different from the original mainly because the game is based in the pool.
Enjoy a round or two, followed by a refreshing dip on a hot summer’s day.
Don’t wish to get wet in order to drink your favorite brew, but want to play something different to traditional beer pong? Up the ante on your drinking games with giant beer pong.
Instead of cups, use cleaned-out trash cans and replace ping pong balls with volley balls.
If you don’t drink or are playing with people or children under age, replace the beer with something non-alcoholic or leave out the drinking part of the game entirely.
Upgrade your pool party with a floating beer pong table here!
Why not consider a game of dodgeball if your guests don’t mind some roughhousing?
The game, made famous by Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller in the laugh-a-minute film, Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, has gained a lot of popularity in America recently.
The objective of the game is as follows: remove the opposition by throwing balls at them. If the player is unable to dodge the ball, and the ball makes contact with his or her body, he or she is out. The team to eliminate all the players from the opposite side first wins the game.
If you like the idea of dodgeball but don’t fancy getting hit where it hurts, you might want to play dodgeball with something softer, such as water balloons.
What you need:
- At least five balloons per player
- Large tubs or buckets to hold the balloons
- Cones or markers
How to play
One the count of three, players dash for the balloons and aim them at their opponents. The aim of the game is to eliminate other players while remaining bone-dry.
Buy your dodgeball starter kit here.
The Limbo is a dance and not a game that originates from the Caribbean, often played at wakes and funerals to celebrate and honor the dead.
It’s also a form of entertainment that brings people together at social gatherings, much like our party version of Limbo.
But unlike the original, ours doesn’t include rhythmic dance movements that perfectly coincide with the music but quite the opposite. While it does include music, there is an air of hilarity about the game, especially when you see inflexible adults trying to bend over backwards attempting to not to touch the limbo pole as it’s lowered closer-and-closer to the ground.
See how low you can go with this inflatable limbo kit! Easy-to-assemble everywhere you go.
How it works:
A horizontal bar is placed between two vertical bars or held by two people at both ends. If you don’t have metal bars to use, that’s fine. Broomsticks were used to play Limbo in the early days, so any long rod or stick can do the job.
All participants must attempt to go under the bar with their backs toward the floor without touching the bar – this means you cannot crouch, bend or duck unless there are more lenient rules for older groups. The people holding the bar are doing so loosely, so if you touch the bar even slightly, it will fall or topple over, which means you’re out of the game.
Each round, the stick is lowered, thus making it more challenging to pass under the bar without touching the pole and being eliminated.
Fun Outdoor Games for Children with Nothing to Do
If you’re a parent, the worse utterings you can hear from a child are, “I’m bored.” So how do you keep the younger members of your family entertained over those long and drawn-out vacations? Here are some innovative ways and unique summer fun games to keep boredom at bay, at least for an hour or two.
While it might be desirable to plonk your children in front of the TV and out of your hair, it’s better to advocate time spent in the outdoors to stimulate their imaginations.
Backyard Obstacle Course: Fun Outside Games
Obstacle courses are great for children, not only do they motivate your little ones to use their noodles while on a break from school but also require physical activity that zaps their boundless energy supplies.
You don’t need to spend a whole lot of time and money setting up an obstacle course. You can use whatever materials are lying around your house.
Items that can be used include:
- Pool noodles
- Potting plants
- Hoola hoops
- Non-toxic and safe garden equipment
Just be mindful that the obstacle course aligns with your child’s skill level; too easy and your offspring will be back to complaining about having nothing to do, and too challenging might dampen their confidence and lead to a tearful tantrum.
If you don’t have anything in your home for an obstacle course, purchase some here.
Recycled Bottle Bowling
Rather than spending money at a bowling alley, create your own in your backyard.
Not only is bowling a fun family affair, but it’s also a way of educating your children about the importance of recycling. The next time you have ten two-liter spare plastic bottles lying around, use them for ten-pin bowling instead of throwing them away.
How to make them:
- Remove the labels and fill the bottles with some water.
- Add food coloring to the bottles; it’s not necessary, but it does make the game more vibrant and exciting.
- Set the bottles up in a triangular shape; four pins in the back row, three in the row in front of that, followed by a pair in the second row and one pin in the front (4,3,2,1).
Do I have to fill the bottles with water?
Filling the bottles with water isn’t necessary, but it gives them weight, which helps to keep the pins standing upright on a windy day.
What ball can I use?
Any ball that you have, but preferably larger ones with a round shape.
Night Time Bowling
If you’re planning on playing night time bowling, it might be useful to add glow sticks to the bottle. Turn off your outdoor lights and enjoy the warm atmosphere of the glowsticks. You can buy these at the party aisle of any department store or purchase quality-assured ones online.
Alternatives to bottles
If you don’t have plastic bottles lying around, empty cans can also be used, although the dynamics are slightly different.
The aim of the family outdoor game is simple: gather, decorate and repurpose six cans. Stack the cans on top of each other and then try to knock them down using a small racquet or tennis ball.
Hula Hooping is a good workout in its own right. Throw a bean bag into the mix, and hula hooping becomes a game between two or more people where they must combine physical fitness with stealthy hand-eye coordination. While continuing to hula hoop, players must block attacking bean bags from entering the hula hoop.
Recap: why we need family-friendly games for rainy days, family events, birthday parties, and social gatherings.
The article has outlined some of the many hilarious, strenuous, and fun games that households across America love to play and be entertained by.
- From tiny tots to older folk, find games that all members of the family can get involved with during meetups. Games genuinely bring everyone together, even teenagers who’d rather be on their phones.
- We know the stress behind planning a child’s birthday party. Incorporate a myriad of highly entertaining DIY games that are easy-to-assemble or cheap to buy online.
- Children aren’t the only ones that need entertainment. Swap out drinking-focused parties, and barbecues for some authentic grownup fun in the sun.
- Dreading your offspring’s upcoming vacation? Keep them busy and away from the TV by playing games with them that force them to use their imagination.