Chubby bunnies

chubby-bunniesWhat it is: A challenge game involving players stuffing as many marshmallows into their mouths as they can. (So it can get kind of gross.)

Best for: A group of teenagers around a campfire.

What you need: A bag of marshmallows (not the mini kind) and some people who are talked into doing somewhat foolish things like stuffing as many marshmallows into their mouths as they can.

How to play: Basically, players just take turns trying to complete the challenge of saying the phrase “chubby bunny” with as many marshmallows in their mouth as possible. So, if Valerie is starting, she would take one marshmallow, put it in her mouth, and say “chubby bunny.” If she successfully says it, she adds another marshmallow and says “chubby bunny” again, and on and on until she either can’t pronounce the phrase intelligibly anymore, she can’t stop laughing, or she gags and spits all the marshmallows out. (I told you, can get gross.) Players keep count of how many marshmallows she fit, and the player that night with the most marshmallows wins.

An alternate way to play is to have all players add a marshmallow at the same time, then go around the circle and say “chubby bunny,” one at a time. Anyone who can’t say the phrase is eliminated from the game, and the next round starts with everyone else putting in another marshmallow. The last player in the game wins. This way would be harder because you would have to wait for a longer time with a ton of marshmallows in your mouth.

To be honest, I was never a huge fan, but if you’ve got a bunch of teenagers on a camping trip who are in a silly sort of mood, I guess this game could get pretty funny.

But please take caution: any time you stuff a lot of food in your mouth, there’s danger of choking. So don’t do this unsupervised, use your common sense, and play safe.

Variations: If you like semi-gross games involving cramming as many sweets into your mouth as you can, you can try the Skittles game too.

Speed Scrabble

What it is: A variant of the game Scrabble that’s much faster because it’s all about…

speed-scrabble

There is a commercial game called Bananagrams that’s essentially the same thing. I learned this game as Speed Scrabble first, and I’ve also heard it called Take Two.

Best for: A small group of people, maybe 4 to 6 players.

What you need: You’ll need letter tiles from a Scrabble game (but you won’t need the game board).

How to play: To set up your game, have everyone sit around a table or in a circle on the floor. Turn all of your Scrabble tiles face-down in the center of the circle and mix them all up. Then have each player pull out two tiles, keeping them face-down.

Someone starts the game by saying “go.” Then everyone turns over his or her pieces.

Each player will be building their own mini Scrabble grid in front of them. So when you turn over your pieces, start spelling with them as fast as you can. Once someone successfully uses all their tiles (and for this first round, that’s just two tiles), they shout “go.” Then everyone reaches forward and grabs another tile from the pile. Now you have three tiles, and you use all of them to build another Scrabble grid. Then, just like in the last round, whoever uses all three pieces together in one unbroken grid first calls “go,” and everyone takes another tile.

Each round you’ll get one more piece, making the grid larger and more complex. You can add the tiles you draw onto your existing grid, or, at any time, you can rearrange the whole thing. To call “go” you just need to use all of your tiles, and they all need to be connected in one unbroken grid.

This short video demonstrates part of a game and should make it a little clearer:

The goal is to use all your pieces, not leaving any out. The person who completes their whole Scrabble grid first when no more pieces are left wins. So it doesn’t matter if you’re ahead or behind for most of the game – all you need to do is be the first to finish and you win.

As for rules, blank tiles are wilds; you can use them for any letter. But it has to be the same letter for the whole Scrabble board, just like in real Scrabble. (But if you do decide to start over and change everything, you can switch the letter the wild stands for.) Players can challenge others’ words if they don’t think they’re real, and at the end the winner has to go through each of their words, proving that they didn’t cheat. It’s also often fun for everyone to say all their words out loud at the end, too.

Variations: Although I haven’t played with most of them, the Wikipedia page on Scrabble variants lists some other variations of Speed Scrabble that sound like they could be fun.

By the way, this post contains affiliate links. Thanks so much for your support!

Presidents’ Day games

Presidents-Day-gamePresidents’ Day is coming up! I wanted to post a Presidents’ Day game this year so I did some research into the holiday, and it was a lot more complicated than I thought! Wikipedia has the full story if you’re interested, but basically it’s not really standardized who exactly we celebrate on Presidents’ Day. The holiday is officially George Washington’s birthday (even though the holiday never falls on his actual birthday…). Abraham Lincoln’s birthday is also in February so he is often celebrated on Presidents’ Day, too, but it is sometimes used as a day to celebrate all American presidents in general. The name varies from state to state. I had no idea! Did you? How does your state celebrate Presidents’ Day?

Well, before I did all that research, I made a version of Who am I? for Presidents’ Day (you can head over to that post for instructions). The Presidents’ Day version has cards with names of American presidents on them and, I admit, would be pretty dang challenging for most people. I’d probably be awful at it. But if you’re a U.S. History class or if you and your friends are history buffs, you’d probably be great at it!

Printable-markerPresidents’ Day “Who Am I?” game

But after doing my research on Wikipedia, I felt bad for not keeping with the roots of the holiday and celebrating George Washington (and Abraham Lincoln) in particular. So I made another game, a matching game.

Presidents Day Game

At a recent birthday dinner for two of my friends, a third friend put this game together. She made a list of  little-known facts about each birthday girl and read them all out loud in no particular order. We all had to write down which friend we thought the fact was about. It was a lot of fun when we played that way, all sitting around the table at our restaurant and laughing as we got to know the birthday girls in new ways.

This Presidents’ Day version may not produce as many giggles, but it’ll definitely keep you thinking! I don’t think it will be easy. (It definitely wouldn’t be for me!) To play, print out the printable. Read the facts out loud to your group. An answer sheet is included for players to write their answers on. There’s also a key so you can read the correct answers at the end of the game. The player with the most right answers wins! I think this would be a great game to play in school as you’re learning about the presidents of the United States, especially Washington and Lincoln. There are 32 facts, 16 about each president. If some of them are too hard or if there are too many for your age group, just leave some off and have students make their own answer sheet.

Printable-markerPresidents’ Day game: Name that president

To complete your Presidents’ Day celebrations, don’t forget to check out my Presidents’ Day pictionary list.

Happy Presidents’ Day and happy playing!

Who am I?

who-am-iWhat it is: A talking and guessing game for a large group of people. You’re assigned a character or person and you have to ask questions to other players until you figure out who you are.

Best for: A medium to large group of people, maybe 10 to 20.

What you need: You’ll need names of characters or people written on cards. These can be themed, like all Star Wars names or all Disney princesses. The broader the theme, the more difficult it will be. You can make your own cards (3×5 cards work great) or I provide some free printable cards at the bottom of the post.

How to play: Before you start, tape a different card on each player’s forehead with masking tape. Do it carefully so they can’t see the name. Once all of the players have a card taped to their forehead, announce the start of the game.

Players are free to mingle throughout the room, talking to each other and trying to figure out which character they have taped on their forehead. They’re allowed to ask yes or no questions, but that’s all. Once they guess correctly, they can remove the card and go stand to the side until everyone guesses their card. (Or they can continue to mingle, answering others’ questions to help them guess.)

Encourage players to move around and mingle and talk to more than one person. It can be a good way to get a variety of clues, and it makes the game more of an icebreaker. Also, sometimes some players may not be familiar with all of the names on the cards, so you might have to talk to multiple people to get enough clues to guess who you are.

If you want an example, let’s say you’re playing in a group where everyone has a Disney character taped to their forehead. Here are some of the questions you might ask and the answers you might receive:

Am I a hero? Yes…

Am I American? Not applicable.

Not applicable? Well, you speak Standard American English, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re American (especially in animated movies, right?).

Am I a person? Yes.

Am I from the past or the future? Present…maybe sort of past?

Am I a boy? Yes.

Am I CGI or animated? CGI.

Am I Woody? No.

Buzz Lightyear? No.

Am I the main character? Yes.

Do I have super powers? Um…no, I would say no.

Am I a grown man? Yes.

Do I play sports? No.

Do I save a girl? Yes.

Do I have a co-star? Yes, several.

Do I have a sidekick? Not really.

Do I sing any songs? No.

Thank heavens.

I’m good, right? At heart…

Am I not good on the surface? You could say that.

Do I have a love interest? No.

Um…give me a hint. Maybe you’re bad guy…but that does not mean you are bad guy

Have you guessed it by now? (Side note: it’s one of my favorite Disney movies.) Leave a comment if you have!

Printables: I made a couple printables to get you started if you want to play this game. There’s a list of female and male Disney characters. (I broke it out by gender in case you have an all-girls sleepover party or something, or if you want to match gender to players.) I only used animated Disney movies, I included Pixar, and, though I didn’t include every movie or every character, there are definitely some obscure ones in there. Each card has the name of the character as well as the movie to make identifying the character easier. If there are some that you think are too difficult or that your group won’t be familiar with, just leave them out.

There are six cards to each 8.5×11 page. Just print and cut along the dotted lines. I would recommend printing on cardstock. Or, you could cut out the cards and mount them on 3×5 notecards.

Printable-markerFemale Disney Character Cards

Printable-markerMale Disney Character Cards

If you play, let me know how it goes! Or let me know if you have any requests of character lists you would like to use. Happy playing!

Bigger or better scavenger hunt

What it is: An activity ideal for a youth night or big group date. It’s a scavenger hunt all about finding things bigger or better…giving it an open-ended and funny twist.

Best for: A big group of teens. You need two or three minimum on a team, but what you really want is multiple teams of three or more players. Then the teams can all compete against each other.

What you need: To start, each team just needs one thing: a penny. This scavenger hunt also involves going door-to-door, so you either need to be in a neighborhood where the teams can walk the whole way, or you might want cars with drivers. If you’re playing with teens, you probably want an adult chaperone with each team, too.

How to play: To start, give each team a penny.

bigger or better scavenger hunt

Then explain the game. Each team will take their penny and start going door-to-door. When they knock on a door and someone answers, they ask one simple question:

We’re doing a scavenger hunt activity. Can you give us anything bigger or better?

And they show the penny. Their goal is to exchange the penny for anything bigger or better that the homeowner wants to give them. Since this is so open-ended, it often leads to some funny results. You usually just end up with junk people want to give away, but that can make it funny, too. It might be an old stuffed animal, or a can of soup, or an empty cardboard box, or an ugly wooden chair.

chair2

Hopefully the people whose doors you knock on find it kind of entertaining, as well. You can leave them with the old item, or, if they don’t want it, you can take it with you. If someone doesn’t want to give you anything, just move on. Be courteous, kind, and grateful to everyone.

At the end of the predetermined game time, everyone meets back where you started to decide who has the biggest or best item of them all. You can award prizes if you want, maybe one for the biggest and one for the best, maybe one for the quirkiest and one for the most valuable. The end is the best part, with everyone telling funny stories and talking about all the crazy or random stuff they picked up that night. It’s a great time for refreshments or dessert, too! (And…you might need to end the whole night with someone making a donation trip to Goodwill.)

One option I wanted to mention: If you don’t want your teams going to strangers’ houses, you can always pre-arrange for them to go to homes of people you know. If you’re doing this with a youth group at a church, for example, you can let members of the congregation know beforehand that the youth will be doing this activity. Then you can assign each team their own houses to visit, or leave it up to the teams to visit whomever in the congregation they want.

I have some fun memories from playing this in my own youth group. Hopefully it can be a fun experience for you, too!

Variations: If you’re into scavenger hunts, I also have a post on photo scavenger hunts, and a series of posts for a two-person date night scavenger hunt.