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43 Fun Outdoor Games You'll Want To Play All Summer Long

Let the games begin!

Summer is just around the corner — and that means pool parties, beach days, and family vacations are on the horizon. But there's plenty of fun to be had even closer to home. That's right, we're talking lawn games: ladder toss, cornhole, you name it. If you're doing it right, it'll get pretty competitive.

Scroll to find the ultimate list of backyard activities. Grab your water balloons, buckets, ladders, pool noodles — oh, and don't forget the kids — and let the outdoor games begin!

1. Dunk Bucket

2. Lawn Twister

3. Giant Beer Pong

4. Frozen T-Shirt Race

5. Giant Jenga

6. Bean Bag Ladder Toss

7. Yard Dominoes

8. Picnic Basket Relay

9. Outdoor Pictionary

10. Glow in the Dark Capture the Flag

11. Giant Bananagrams

12. Glow in the Dark Bowling

13. Spaghetti Scavenger Hunt

14. Giant Kerplunk

15. Blanket Run

16. Drip Drip Dunk

17. Yard Yahtzee

18. Watch Your Step

19. Cup Races

20. Giant Lawn Matching Game

21. Swap out baseballs for water balloons to take backyard batting practice to the next level.

22. Use pool toys, sponges, and PVC pipe to make a kiddie car wash.

23. DIY a dunk bucket to drench your friends (and practice your throwing).

Sarah Ellis, left, and her son Topher, 10, get doused with buckets of cold water as they take part in the Denver Polar Plunge to support Special Olympics on March 7, 2021

24. Take a fill-the-bucket water relay to the next level by drilling holes in the relay cups.

a child pouring a bucket of water on their head

25. Make an easy water slide using a tarp, a hose, and shampoo.

boy having fun on water slide in backyard

26. Swap out a piñata for water balloons for a game that will actually cool you down.

a wall of water balloons

27. Cup up sponges to make water fight tools that are more gentle than regular balloons.

a yellow sponge

28. Combine the fun of a sprinkler with a game of limbo for fun at all ages (and heights).

29. Transform pool noodles and a tarp into a backyard hockey rink.

30. Use a hula hoop to make giant person-sized bubbles.

a kid making a huge bubble

31. Round up the biggest, baddest Disney villains and use them for squirt gun target practice.

little boy using a water gun during a water fight in backyard

32. Use squirt guns to race plastic cups down a line.

water gun

33. Transform "Duck, duck goose" into "Drip, drip, drench" by tagging players with a soaked sponge.

kids playing duck duck goose outside

34. Construct a water balloon launcher out of a repurposed tub and a wooden plank.

35. Get up a sidewalk racetrack and propel toy cars with squirt guns.

a toy car

36. Use kiddie pools as bases in a game of kickball that's actually refreshing.

kids playing in a kiddie pool

37. Fill water balloons with water, cornstarch, and food coloring to make awesome splatter paint bombs.

38. Rig up this awesome series of water blasters using hoses, pipes, and pool noodles.

39. No water? No problem! Try something call "human surfing"— grab a bunch of friends and roll around on the ground in a competition.

40. Get yourself this set of giant dice and play literally any game that involves rolling a die— but substitute this giant set in your backyard.

41. Get yourself a (or carve your own) set of Viking Chess (aka Kubb).

42. Break out the dictionaries and play some giant word games.

43. And finally, reach for a backyard classic and play some cornhole.

This article contains content from Mallory Mclnnis and Maitland Quitmeyer. It was compiled by Salimah McCullough.