No matter what part of the country you call home, fun and adventure await. The problem is, you actually have to switch off your electronic devices, wander out into the sunlight and find it. Here are three fun, inexpensive activities to get you and your family off the couch and into the great outdoors.
Tag is a classic — and with good reason. It’s simple. It requires no set-up or equipment, and it’s suitable for virtually all ages.
It’s also super-easy to modify. Once the littlest members of your clan have mastered the basics of tag, consider adding one of its many variations into the mix, such as freeze tag, color tag or amoeba tag. You might also lace up your New Balance athletic shoes and add some of these other backyard classics into your repertoire too:
- Hide ‘n’ Seek
- Red Light, Green Light
- Ghosts in the Graveyard
- Capture the Flag
While part of tag’s timelessness is its accessibility, with just a few inexpensive materials, you can also incorporate a slew of other games into your all-ages backyard Olympics. All that’s needed for hopscotch, for instance, is some chalk and a rock. Remember those ferocious four square battles on your elementary school playground? You can recreate them with that same stick of chalk and a ball.
Get to know your yard, neighborhood park or local beach better by splitting into teams and turning it upside down. Scavenger hunts are endlessly customizable. Here’s how to create one for your family:
- Pick a site for your hunt.
- Make a list of items to find there, like a maple leaf, fire hydrant or someone wearing Sperry shoes.
- Distribute that list to each team.
- Establish whether those items need to be gathered and brought back, whether teams should take a photo of them, or some combination of the two.
- Instruct teams to come back in 45 minutes or when they find everything on the list — whichever happens first.
- Turn the teams loose!
Scavenger hunts are a fun, competitive way to get your family outside and moving. You don’t have to offer incredible cash and prizes to the winning team, but bear in mind that virtually no one can turn down a celebratory ice cream sandwich, homemade certificate, or ice cold beer (adults only, of course).
From Super Soakers and garden hoses to breakfast cereal bowls and shoes for kids, your home has no shortage of ways to gather up water and repeatedly hurl it at your loved ones. When the temperature rises, turn on the sprinkler, gather up your containers and head outside for a good old-fashioned water fight. Much like the other two suggestions on this list, the beauty of a watery battle royal is that it’s low on cost, big on laughs and something that will entertain your toddlers and teenagers alike.
When the weather warms up, it’s the perfect time to stash the cell phones in a drawer — or at least the very bottom of your beach bag — and spend some quality time with your brood. Get outside, get moving and don’t forget to layer on the sunscreen.