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50 Outdoor Games to DIY This Summer

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Summer days are perfect for little-to-no-skill-needed lawn games with family and friends in the backyard. Most of these games are easy and inexpensive to make and they all would make great party games for any occasion. Whether you’re looking for an old classic, entertainment for your outdoor wedding or fun activities to get your kids out of the house, we’ve got 50 of the best summer games for the young and young at heart.

1. Lawn Scrabble: Get the kids off their phones and playing a real life version of Words With Friends! All you need is some cardboard and markers to make a Scrabble board that spans the whole yard! (via Constantly Lovestruck)

2. DIY Pinata Kit ($38): Although the papier mache can be a little tedious, nothing says summer party like a bright piñata! Bonus: This DIY doubles as decor. (via How About We)

3. DIY Twister: Forget that flimsy plastic sheet, grab a circle template and make your own game right on the lawn! You could even paint two or three boards and have teams compete against each other to get everyone involved. (via You + Me)

4. Make a Tree Swing: Nothing brings back more summer memories than a wooden swing hanging under a tree. If you have little ones or are a kid at heart, don’t spend another day without this summer essential. (via A Beautiful Mess)

5. Pastel Horseshoes: Update classic yard games like horseshoes or croquet with color blocks of pastel spray paint for some chic fun in the sun! (via Design Love Fest)

6. Backyard Kerplunk Game: The goal is to get out the sticks without any balls falling out. Children and adults will have a blast challenging each other with this. (via All Parenting)

7. DIY Lawn Matching Game: This game is perfect for the backyard, picnics, even beach trips, and it’s made with cork tiles, so it’s totally reusable. The tutorial includes printables, making it your easiest project of the entire season. (via Studio DIY)

8. DIY Ring Toss: The colors are all customizable, it costs next to nothing to make and is endless amusement for the whole family. (via And We Play)

9. Bean Bag Toss: How adorable are these monster cutouts? We especially love the little teeth that make this game oh-so difficult! (via Crafty Carnival Fun)

10. Bottle Ring Toss: Those colors! We’re in love. (via Woman’s Day)

11. Colorful Ping Pong Table: You don’t have to wait until the 4th of July to play on this uber patriotic table! If you’re not confident in your ability to paint straight lines, you could go a different route with some neon color blocking. (via Mr. Kate)

12. DIY Cornhole Set: Building a set is a fairly easy project — we made ours with an old canvas for our dear ol’ dad for Father’s Day. (via Brit + Co.)

13. Rock Dominoes: Easy and essentially free, you could have a domino game that stretches all over the patio. (via Martha Stewart)

14. Giant Colorblocked Jenga: This project is pretty inexpensive and could make a really cute gift to a family or friend who loves outdoor games. Bring it to your next barbecue or picnic. (via A Beautiful Mess)

15. Sponge Water Bombs: Water balloons are great, but they are a pain to make and no one likes picking up those little pieces of rubber after the big fight. Try these awesome sponge water “bombs” instead for reusable ammunition they can use all summer long! (via The Chic Site)

16. Football Practice: Perfect for the budding athlete or just for a fun challenge to see who can get the most points. (via Spoonfull)

17. DIY Mud Run: Check out this little obstacle course! You’re going to be jealous and maybe wish you were three-feet tall again. (via Ashley Ann Photography)

18. Gnome Bowling: These adorable gnomes are made out soda bottles! Don’t worry, there is a downloadable template so your little gnome pins can be as fun as these. (via Make)

19. Open Air Art: Pull some inspiration from the Impressionist era and get the kids out doing some nature “painting” with a huge chalkboard you could mount on the fence. Every time it rains, you’ll have a clean canvas! (via Project Denneler)

20. Obstacle Course Party: Obstacle course challenges are pure fun and energy, and they can be set up easily on your lawn or at a local park using items found around the house. (via Martha Stewart)

21. Ice Block Treasure Hunt: If you play your cards right, this activity could keep the kids occupied for hours. (via Macaroni Kid)

22. Pool Noodle Games: Homemade noodle rings can be used for a ton of fun games like human ring toss, an obstacle course, a soccer goal or javelin. (via Parents)

23. DIY Water Blob: A water blob is a large piece of plastic sheeting that is taped shut and then filled with water. It’s the perfect activity for hot summer days for all ages, especially the toddler years since it is totally safe. You could also add confetti or small gummy items like worms or fish for a theme party or turn on the sprinkler for a DIY slip-and-slide. (via The Clumsy Crafter)

24. Balloon Dart Board: Either fill your balloons with water and make different colors worth different point values or, if you’re in a messy creative mood, fill each balloon with paint and make a piece of art this summer! (via My Good Morning)

25. The Human Bubble: All you need is a wading pool, a hula hoop and some homemade bubble solution to garner some major oohs and ahhs. (via One Charming Party)

26. Angry Birds Game: We’re going to be honest here… this game is not just for kids, and we definitely want a chance to bring those pigs tumbling down! (via Simply Styled Home)

27. DIY Music Fence: Head to the thrift store and buy anything that makes a cool sound, then bring it back and make a wall of noise-makers for your budding maestro. (via Creatively Blooming)

28. Wood Burned Tic Tac Toe: Perfect for little hands, this rustic game set could sit outside all summer on your porch and maybe even double as coasters. (via Spalvotas)

29. Popcorn Drop: Attach cups of popcorn to your shoes and hustle across the lawn trying not to spill! The person with the most popcorn at the end of the race wins! (via BHG)

30. Archery Challenge: If the Big Day is coming up, check out this Hunger Games-inspired wedding where the guests played archery during the reception. (via Meghan Christine)

31. Pool Prize Search: On a hot summer day, the coolest party games involve water; it’s up to you to decide if goggles are allowed or if they have to find treasures using only their feet! (via BHG)

32. Giant Pick-Up Sticks: An old-fashioned favorite, pickup sticks get way more challenging when the sticks are three-feet long! (via BHG)

33. DIY Miniature Golf Course: How fun is this all-natural mini golf course with those mossy logs and stones? (via Focal Point Styling)

34. Potato Sack Race: The goofiness of this lawn game will ensure for great pictures at your wedding or otherwise. (via Tied Bow)

35. Water Balloon Piñata: What better way to beat the heat and shock the kiddos than with a water balloon piñata free-for-all! (via Scrap Happy Heather)

36. Picnic Blanket Game Board: Here is a really easy idea for a picnic blanket game board that has a built-in chess and checker board. Now you can play one of our favorite games outdoors, without worrying about the pieces blowing away or getting the board set up on an uneven surface. (via Nellie Bellie)

37. Water Balloon Spoon Races: Wrap these Dollar Tree wooden spoons in washi tape for a lovely touch. If you’re going to make a game, you want it to be pretty! (via Two Shades of Pink)

38. DIY Ladder Ball: Made out of PVC pipe, this should only cost you about $30 to make and is sturdy enough to endure a whole summer of exciting competitions. (via Home Depot)

39. Pipe Ball: Similar to cornhole, this pipe ball game is a bit more challenging! Catch the unforgiving angled rim of one of the pipes and you’re off to the bushes to find where the ball bounced. (via This Old House)

40. Travel Checkerboard: Heading on a road trip this summer? Follow our tutorial for how to turn lovely wooden checkers and chess sets into full-size travel games with VELCRO so you don’t lose a single piece en route! (via Brit + Co.)

41. Outdoor Tic Tac Toe: Make an outdoor tic-tac-toe game with a cutting board, rocks and decoupage! (via Creating Really Awesome Free Things)

42. Catch and Toss DIY: What better game for an afternoon in the park than a neon flashback to the ’90s? (via Brit + Co.)

43. Bobbing For Donuts: Get some string, hang some donuts from a low branch and have the kids try and eat the donuts off the string without using their hands. It’s tougher than you’d think which makes for tons of laughter. (via The Chic Site)

44. DIY Cement Dominoes: Too cute! Little dominoes made out of cement in an ice cube tray! And such a lovely color palette, we might add. (via Lovely Indeed)

44. DIY Giant Dice Game: This game of chance isn’t over until the last dice have been tossed. This is an easy-to-learn game that is perfect to have on hand during barbecues and pool parties. (via DIY Showoff)

45. DIY Bowling Alley: The design for this alley makes it viable for a backyard, since it’s easily put together and taken apart for storage. (via Apartment Therapy)

46. Outdoor Scrabble: How cute is this idea for a big outdoor Scrabble game? What a perfect way to get some Vitamin D while working on that triple letter score. (via BHG)

47. DIY Croquet Mallets: You can’t go wrong with an old classic like croquet, and if you’re feeling ambitious, you could even make your own personalized mallets. (via At Second Street)

48. Knock The Can Game: A classical carnival game that is a cinch to put together and makes a bright and colorful statement. (via Paging Super Mom)

49. On Target: Similar to lawn darts but without that element of death, these sand-filled bags are thrown into rings kind of like horseshoes, but safer for tiny players. (via Spoonful)

50. DIY Cloth Picnic Games: We love the idea of a game board that you can fold up and tuck into your picnic basket for any summer adventure! And if you don’t yet know how to play Squares, you can learn that in here, too. (via Say Yes)

Will you be playing any of these games this summer? Let us know in the comments below!