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Top 10 Outdoor Kids Games

Written by: Editorial Staff

May 26, 2011
Filed Under Games and Toys 


One of the top ten outdoor kids gamesContributed by Dave Buesing, Top 10 Guru

Kids these days, right? They just sit inside playing video games and watching television!

Personally, I haven’t even seen a child outside in years. You know the reason why? Nobody’s told them what games to play when they’re outside. Well, it’s about time we corrected that injustice, and insufficient tans everywhere, with a proper list.

10. Chips

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

Few games have the same potential for serious, inexplicable injury, and therefore few are as exciting. For the unfamiliar, Chips is like tag meets hide-and-go-seek on playground equipment. One person is it and they wander aimlessly around an unfamiliar jungle gym trying to tag their opponents. OR, they can yell “Chips!” if an opponent tries to run across the woodchips (get it?) to another hiding place.

It may well be the most dangerous game on the planet, but it teaches an important life lesson: never close your eyes all the way when surrounded by metal pipes.

9. Squirt gun fights

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

The only way to screw up a squirt gun fight is to not have one. Add some water balloon grenades, an inflatable slip-and-slide, and a few super-soakers to the mix, and you’ve got yourself the ammo to take out a warm afternoon. Make sure to split the teams evenly (nobody wins when the scrawny neighbor is trying to defend himself with a mini water pistol) and have at it!

8. Wiffle ball

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

When you’re a kid, it’s not really practical to start a friendly game of baseball. It’s tough enough to round up 17 other like-minded peers, and baseballs break neighbor’s windows like Batman breaks criminals.

Wiffle ball, with its softer equipment and greater ease, makes the perfect substitute. You can grab a cheap yellow bat, a couple friends, and hit for hours. Toss on that major league baseball jersey and you’re all set.

7. 21

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

Not to be confused with the more adult card game, Twenty-One is a great outdoor game for basketball fans. Kids only need one or two opponents, a ball, a hoop, and a previously and clearly defined scoring system. I don’t care how you do it, but if you’re going to say tips before 13 make a player’s score go to zero, then you had better say that before you tip me, man!

6. Capture the flag

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

Two teams. Two flags. One child sprinting to glory with a red piece of fabric in his hands. One of the true great games. To make the game particularly epic, try to find some open and natural scenery.

5. Hopscotch

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

I have a feeling I know what you’re thinking: “Hopscotch? Seriously? I thought this was the top 10 outdoor games. Not the ‘I can’t think of anything creative’ Olympics.” I understand the criticism. I also understand that designing an artsy series of jumping squares across stretches of sidewalk and then hopping the whole way is not for the faint of heart. And if you’ve never held jumbo sidewalk chalk in your hands, you haven’t lived.

4. Ghosts in the graveyard

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

What we have here is the core of hide-and-seek, mixed with tag, and topped off with the totally scary darkness of night. It is as close to hunting humans as children will ever come, and who doesn’t love the thrill of the most dangerous game?

3. Freeze tag

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

Much better than traditional tag because of the serious implications. You get tagged and you aren’t just “it” (whatever that may mean). No, instead, you are frozen, Han Solo style. You just better hope a young Jedi feels like saving you.

2. Use your imagination

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

Go outside and pretend you’re fighting aliens. Or building a snow fort to prevent an invasion of abominable snowmen. Old folks like to act as if this skill is lost on today’s youth; prove the curmudgeons wrong by imagining the only way to make it back to base is to point and laugh at as many old-robots as possible.

1. Red rover

One of the top ten outdoor kids games

I’ve never met anyone who actually likes Red Rover, but if you’re a kid at any point in your life, you’re going to play it. The key to survival? Avoid anyone who looks like maybe they pour steroids into their cereal.

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One Response to “Top 10 Outdoor Kids Games”

  1. Missy Nolan on May 26th, 2011 5:56 pm

    Ahhhh. I miss all of these games.