More families are having summer outdoor backyard parties than ever before. With the pandemic, fewer families are partying in public venues for safety reasons, but they are finding their own backyards can be the ideal spots for having fun. Whether it’s a birthday party or just a fun time together, this would be a terrific occasion.
Decide whether this party is for younger children, older children or a mixed group. That will help you figure out what type of games to plan.
Then, make sure your yard is safe–pick up random sticks and rocks, cut back any bushes, vines or small trees, and fill any holes or cover any roots. Be certain there is no poison oak or ivy or any ground bees or wasps. Cut the grass before your party.
Set up umbrellas or patio screens to protect party-goers from too much sun. Set out patio chairs and tables around the yard in socially distant seating groups. Ask your guests to wear face masks. Have sunscreen and bug spray on hand to use as needed. Keeping a first aid kit ready to use is wise.
Minimal decorating is needed. You can use paper pennant garlands or crepe paper streamers on your railings, fences or playground equipment. You can also tie balloons in the same places.
Have plenty of water available–coolers filled with ice and drinks are great to have on hand.
If you have playground equipment in your yard, make sure it’s clean and has no rough places that could scratch a child. Allow your younger guests to play on the equipment at the beginning of the party before the planned games and at the end.
Sidewalk chalk drawings appeal to all ages. If you have a sidewalk or concrete patio in your backyard, you can create large or small murals–ask your guests to sit apart while drawing. You can also use spray chalk in colors on the grass in your yard. Make some large cardboard templates of shapes to spray inside of or around.
Other art projects are also entertaining. You can set up finger painting stations or hang large sheets of paper for the children to paint on with provided paints and brushes and smocks.
Rubber balls can provide loads of fun for kids of all ages. Younger children enjoy rolling or tossing the ball to others in a circle or passing it in a relay. Older children may want to play soccer, dodgeball, kickball or Red Rover.
Making giant bubbles is always popular with younger children. In several flat pans, put the liquid soap and provide large plastic or bent coat hangers to catch the soap on. Then the children can wave or run to create the bubbles. Going fishing in a tub or plastic baby pool challenges the guests to catch toy fish that have magnets on them with fishing rods equipped with magnets inside of hooks. Keep a towel on hand to wipe off the soap or water.
Older children will enjoy chasing each other with super water guns, Silly String, or water balloons. Traditional relay races like three-legged races or carrying eggs on spoons always create excitement for the teams. If the weather is hot, running through the sprinkler is a favorite of all ages. Be sure to get parents to send bathing suits and towels or dry clothes for the children to put on.
Younger children can search the yard for toys or candy hidden, like an Easter egg hunt. Older children in teams will enjoy looking for clues in the backyard to solve a treasure hunt with prizes.
There are so many easy games and activities to make summer outdoor backyard parties a wonderful memory for your guests.