There are many backyard games you can play with your kids, as you all enjoy the brisk autumn weather and brilliantly-colored leaves. The type of games may be classified as those age-appropriate for little ones, and those for older kids and participating adults.
For example, for children up to about age eight, game choices are:
1. Blind man’s bluff: One player is blindfolded, spun around and required to tag any other child within reach.
2. Pin the tail on the donkey: This is similar, where the eye-covered child is given a paper tail, brought to the donkey picture and must guess where to pin the tail.
3. Catch the balloon: Choose partners on two sides to stand about five feet away, facing each other. They toss the balloons back and forth. Move the players back a step after each successful toss. Last balloon not burst wins the game.
4. One-legged race: Loosely tie one ankle each of two same-age children with a ribbon. They must compete with other tied kids and run 20 yards to a finish line. The same race could be held with father-son and/or mother-daughter contestants.
5. Whiffle ball: If the kids know the basics of baseball, they can understand the rules of whiffleball. Use a lightweight plastic bat and large whiffleball. Construct a small baseball diamond with cushions as bases. An older child or adult serves as the umpire.
For children, teens and adults from about age nine and above, some backyard games could include:
1. Volleyball would be great for all family memebers to enjoy. Depending on the amount of flat space available, set up the net (at bit lower if there are small kids playing) and mark lines in chalk or with thin strips of cloth.
2. Regulation ping pong requires enough room, too. If space is not large enough, use a flat piece of wood. If a net isn’t available, put another flat piece in the center.
3. Piggyback races can be played in various fun ways. Contestant pairs can be kids only, kids riding parents’ backs or parents only. A variation could be using wagons, wheelbarrows or trikes to be pushed by one of the partners.
4. Various games for older kids and adults to join in together include softball, whiffle ball, kick ball and touch football.
5. One game could be fun and helpful at the same time. If autumn has brought many backyard leaves that need to be cleaned up, organize a raking and leaf-stuffing contest. The team with the most bags stuffed are the winners.
There can be other activities that go with the games that’ll make your backyard autumn party even more enjoyable. One game can be played right after everyone has eaten lunch. Hang a piniata nearby that has been filled with packaged toys, candy and cookies. Each child player is blindfolded, turned around and then tries to whack the piniata with a stick.
This and other party activities will make great memories long after your golden autumn afternoon fun is over.