3 Classic Outdoor Games to Play This Summer
Backyard games are the best way to have fun with a group of kids hanging out together during the summer. Whether you’re hosting a birthday party, cottage weekend, or cousins’ camp, these classic outdoor games are guaranteed to produce lots of laughter and fun.
1. Kick the Can
This classic backyard game has several variations, the easiest of which is this: have three or more players available, a can (or a ball), and an outdoor space large enough to run around and hide. You also need a designated space for a ‘jail, which is any area within sight of the game where the tagged players can wait to join in the game again. To play, select one player to be ‘it’. Set the can out in the middle of the open area. The person who is ‘it’ stands with one foot placed on the can, eyes closed, and counts out loud to 50 while the other kids have the chance to hide. When the time is up, the ‘it’ person opens their eyes and begins to search for the other players. As he/she is looking, the other players must attempt to get past and ‘kick the can’. If the ‘it’ person tags someone before they can kick the can, that person must go to jail and wait. The only way players can get out of jail is if someone successfully kicks the can. If the person who is ‘it’ catches all the players before the can is kicked, they win the game.
A twist on traditional hide and seek, in this game the person who is ‘it’ finds a place to hide, while the rest of the players count to 30 with their eyes closed. Then everyone goes in search of the hider. Once the hider is found by another player, that person must squeeze into the same hiding spot, taking care not to make any noise. This continues until only one person is left and then they become the next hider.
3. Capture the Flashlight
To play you’ll need a large field or yard and two flashlights. Designate a centre line and have each team hide their flashlight (turned off) on their half of the field. Teams try to sneak across the centre line to find the other team’s flashlight. If tagged they go to ‘jail’, and can only be released when one of their own teammates sneaks across the line and tags them. Once a player/players find their opponents’ flashlight, they turn it on and run as fast as possible back to their side of the line. Because it’s dark, you can sneak across and crawl around before someone easily finds a person on the other team. If a team make it back to their side of the field with the other team’s flashlight they successfully win the game. This game is best played at dusk or in the dark.