When choosing party games for your gathering, keep in mind that not all games are appropriate for all ages. If you have a mixture of younger and older kids, party games that depend on luck rather than skill might be the way to go. And remember that while most kids love a good competition, most also hate to lose. Make sure there are enough games to play and prizes on hand to ensure that nobody goes home empty-handed and feeling like a loser.
Here are our top five picks for out-of-the-ordinary party games for kids, with links to detailed rules for each game.
Tic-, Tac...Oh No!: An outdoor version of tic-tac-toe, this party game is played on a grid drawn in chalk on a driveway or sidewalk. Rather than just placing markers on the grid, players must stand behind a line and toss them instead. This ups the ante just a bit and introduces an active element to a classic party game.
Hula Hoop Game: A silly party game that requires players to work together as a team, the Hula Hoop Game is one in which everyone wins or loses together. The object of the game is deceptively simple: Pass a Hula Hoop around a group of players who are holding hands in a circle. It's not as easy as it sounds!
Ice Cube Melt: The perfect party game for a hot, summer day, Ice Cube Melt is a team activity in which the object is to see which team can melt an ice cube the fastest. It's appropriate for kids of all ages and has only one rule: Someone must be holding the ice cube at all times. Best of all? Everything you need to play can be found right inside your freezer!
Capture the Moon: A variation of tag, this party game is perfect for gatherings that run into the evening hours. With one guest playing astronaut, the other players try to capture a soccer ball moon while avoiding being 'tagged' with a flashlight beam. It's great after-dark fun for kids of all ages.
Chopstick Pass-Along: When the festivities are taking place indoors, Chopstick Pass-Along is a great party game that won't wreck the house. Divided into teams, players try to pass several small objects down the line and back again using only chopsticks. For younger players, use a spoon instead of chopsticks.