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Outdoor Lawn Games for Adults | Backyard Fun In The Sun

Updated on June 9, 2016

Fun Outdoor Lawn Games For Adults

The sun is out and summer is here, why are we spending time indoors? Most houses have at least a little bit of green space, and very often it is under utilized. There are a ton of fun lawn games for adults that you may not be familiar with. They all have different space requirements, and they all have different skill levels, but the one common thread is that they're a blast.

Backyard games for adults have been a staple of garden parties and barbecues for many years. They are generally geared to be quick, fun, and easy to learn and play, and they are usually really inexpensive to get into. However, choosing the right one for your party can be tricky, especially if you're not familiar with all the options.

This article will be taking a look at a handful of my favorite yard games for adults. We'll take a close look at each one, going over the rules, requirements, space needed and number of players, as well as anything else you might need to know. Hopefully this will help you identify a few awesome choices for your upcoming events. Let's get going!


Choosing the Right Adult Outdoor Yard Games for your Party:

It's hard to go wrong with most of the choices that I'm going to present, but you do want to be careful and select outdoor yard games for adults that will suit the party, the people attending and the overall theme of the event. When done right, a good yard game will be something people will talk about and remember for a long time. It's highly recommended for a successful backyard party.

Think About Demographics:

This may seem obvious, but do consider the people attending the party. Backyard lawn games for adults are only fun if they're geared properly towards the attendees. For example, I don't recommend choosing tackle football if most of the participants are elderly!

Consider the majority of the people invited, and how they like to spend their time. Are they sporty? Do they spend their time hiking, biking and running, or are they introverted, indoors-y people?

If there is a good mixture of personality types, it's a good idea to choose a game with broad appeal, or have a couple of options available and let people choose.

Consider Your Space:

Many adult lawn games will have space restrictions, meaning you have to have a larger backyard in order to play. Before you invest in a game be sure you have a space to place it (whether it's your back yard or a nearby green area), or it will gather dust.

Test It Out (If Possible):

In order to choose a fun outdoor game for grown ups, do your best to try out the game before you purchase it. Find a friend who has it, or ask the store if they have a version on display so you can give it a whirl.

Bocce: A Classic Outdoor Yard Game for Adults

You may already be familiar with Bocce; it's a classic game that's well known and loved. I've personally spent many hours at BBQs and parties playing this one, and it's a great, fun, and social activity that's great for people of all ability levels.

The concept is simple: you gather a group of two-to-five people. Each person gets a set of colored wooden or plastic balls that are weighted. One person throws a marker ball off into the grass, and everyone (from the same point as the marker was thrown), must toss or roll their balls towards the marker. The person who gets closest to the marker wins a point. If that person happens to have both balls closest to the marker, they get two points!

It's a great lawn game for grown-ups and kids alike because it's not overly competitive, and it doesn't rely too much on strength or endurance. Much of the game is luck, really. It's a lot of fun to place silly wagers and do a bit of trash talking (at least that's how my family does it!). Bocce is inexpensive and can be played in a smaller green space.

KanJam: Frisbee and Volleyball?

KanJam is a really interesting and fun lawn game for adults and teenagers. It's a unique combination of sports. Basically, you need a frisbee and two large cans.

Here's how it works: you have two teams of two or more people each. Each team has a can. One team member stands in front of the can, while the other stands across the lawn to toss the frisbee. You toss the frisbee towards your team member. They then must tip or bump the frisbee into the can.

You get one point if the team member deflects the frisbee into the side of the can without it going in. You get two points if the thrower hits the side of the can directly. You get three points if the team deflects the frisbee right into the can. You also get an instant win if the thrower tosses a 'hole in one' and it goes in the can without any need for deflection (very difficult). The first team to 21 points wins.

This is a great game for frisbee enthusiasts, and it works well for smaller parties of people who want to play a game. It takes some getting used to, and requires some practice to get it right, but it's a guaranteed hoot and there will be tons of laughter, cheering and trash talk. It's probably an outdoor yard game suited to adults more than children, but teens may enjoy it too. Check out the KanJam phenomenon!

Beanbag Toss: A Fun Adult Lawn Game for Two

This is another classic. The beanbag toss game is a well known outside yard game that adults and children alike will enjoy. The concept is pretty simple: there is a wooden target with holes cut out of it, each with a point value attached to it. You get three beanbags each, and you stand a predetermined distance away from the target. You toss the beanbag and keep track of any points you score.

This is a great one for a casual weekend afternoon where everyone has eaten and there isn't much interest in running around. You can play a 'round robin' style, where people are called up when it's their turn. You can play elimination rounds too for a prize or bragging rights.

This one requires a bit of gear, but you can easily make it yourself if you're handy. Or, you can buy one that's pre-made already, my personal preference. It's a fun, competitive and safe outdoor lawn game for both kids and adults, and one I recommend you try!

Ladder Golf: Entertaining Backyard Fun for Adults

You may not be familiar with ladder golf, but I warn you: it's addictive! This is another in the 'toss' style of games, but it comes with a twist. Instead of having a bean bag or a ball, you have two balls attached by a rope. You set up a vertical ladder made of piping that usually has three horizontal rungs. You toss the bolo through the air with the hope of wrapping it around one of these rungs. If it does, and it doesn't fall off, you get points!

This is a nice game because learning how to toss the bolo properly is a tricky thing, but once you master it you can start learning trick shots (over the shoulder, longer distances, etc). It's also the kind of game that has very few physical restrictions, so people of all ages can enjoy it. You don't need a lot of green space to play it, so it's perfect for a small back yard.

You can build your own using PVC piping and old tennis balls, but I do recommend you buy one from the store, they just go together nicely and make life easier. Plus, many of them fold up for easy storage and come with a carrying case. In any event, ladder golf is an awesome and fun outdoor game for adults that your whole family will love. It's a tailgating classic!

Spikeball: A Fun Volleyball Inspired Lawn / Beach Game for Adults

Love volleyball but don't have the space to play it? You may enjoy Spikeball! It's a really fun game for four people that can be played in a pretty small space, but it combines a lot of the fun of volleyball, and it's a great exercise.

Spikeball consists of a springy net and a handball. Two teams of two face each other across the net. You hit the ball onto the net and it springs up. The other team can volley the ball up to three times before they must hit it back onto the net. If the other team can't return it, or if they make the ball hit the ground, you score a point. You play to 21 points just like volleyball.

This is a great outdoor game for grown-ups and teens, and it's a fantastic cardiovascular workout. It's not going to be a huge hit with people who aren't in great shape, but it's really portable and can be brought to the beach easily enough. Fast paced and exciting, this is a nice choice.

Giant Toppling Tower: Don't Knock It Over!

This is another super fun one. You've probably seen versions of this game in smaller, table top varieties. Giant Toppling Tower is a fun, slow-paced outdoor lawn game for adults that almost everyone will recognize and 'get' right away.

The concept is really simple: you just stack up the wooden blocks into a perfect wooden tower. Each player removes a piece at a time, and place that block on the top of the tower. The object is to not be the one to cause the tower to come crashing down!

It's one of my top choices for backyard games for grown-ups, mostly because it's so easy to set up and play. The only real requirement is a fairly flat surface to set up the tower on. I'd even recommend setting up on a piece of plywood or something.

If you're the sort who enjoys a good drinking game, this is a great one for that, and it's awesome for tailgating as well! It's a wonderful outdoor lawn game for kids and adults alike, and you'll have friends wanting to borrow it all the time, I guarantee!

Badminton: A Classic Backyard Game for Kids & Adults

You probably already know about badminton, but I wanted to remind you that you can play it without a ton of heavy setup nowadays. There are badminton sets that are super portable and can be used on the beach, lawn or just about anywhere you'd like to play.

The great thing about badminton is it is a little more slow paced than say tennis. That means that people of all athletic abilities can probably play it and enjoy. It's still competitive enough to be a blast, especially if you get a tournament style game going at a BBQ or a garden party.

The object is really simple: you set up a net, and teams of one or two each get a racket. The 'birdie', or shuttlecock as it is properly known, is the equivalent of the ball, and you serve it across the net to one another. The mesh on the shuttlecock prevents it from going too fast or causing injury, so this is a safe alternative. Many of the sets for sale these days are really portable and can be stored in a single bag when not in use. Badminton is a classic lawn game for adults and it always goes over really well.

Backyard Game Poll:

Which of the games listed looks like the most fun?

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Any fun outdoor lawn games I missed? Post them here!

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    • dennisbruckner profile image

      Dennis Bruckner 3 years ago from Salt Lake City, UT

      My absolute favorite is Bocce. My family and I used to play with the Italian family across the street and they got us hooked on it for a lifetime!