15 Fun Summer Party Activities And Games For Kids

by Ann Mifsud

summer-party-activities-and-games

If you’re wondering what to do at a kids’ summer party to keep your young enthusiastic guests entertained without overdoing it, you have come to the right page.

Summer party activities and game ideas are splashed all over the web. But if you’re like us, you wouldn’t want a 1,001 ideas thrown at you leaving you overwhelmed not knowing where to start from.

For this reason we have chosen for you some of the most fun and exciting summer party activities and games that won’t disappoint even if you repeat them year after year. Sticking to our guide you need not stay moving from one page to another to find what you want and what you need. We have you covered.

With every game and activity you’ll find what you need, how to do each activity and how to play each game.

Adding to this, we have categorized for you, all the summer party activities and games that we’re recommending as follows:

Affiliate disclosure: As Amazon Associates we earn from qualifying purchases.

Note: When we devised these summer party activities and games, we had in mind children 8 years up. Though they are perfect for tweens and teenagers, these summer party activities can be also adapted for younger kids. Nevertheless, if you don’t find here what you need for younger children go to our full guide to the best classic party games for the little ones.

Let’s start with the first set of the summer party games…

Easy Summer Party Activities

The first 5 summer party activities we’re recommending, are designed for guests that prefer a more laid back style of party. These kind of party-goers usually like to chill out and engage themselves in activities that don’t require too much effort. For them the best thing at the party is to spend time with friends without having to get wet or messy.

1. Reverse Charades

This is a variation of the classic charades game. It comes very handy when you need your young guests to calm down after some vigorous activity we are suggesting below.

Follow this clip if you wish to refresh your mind how to play normal charades.

What you need

  • White slips of thick paper or cardstock (A5 size is good)
  • Chisel tip highlighter pens
  • Double-sided tape

How to play Reverse Charades

  • Provide the participants with chisel tip highlighter pens and white slips of paper for them to write the secret word or phrase.
  • Divide the guests in two equal teams.
  • In reverse charades, each team selects one guesser – every participant will have a turn.
  • Stick one of the papers to the guesser forehead with some double-sided tape, without showing him or her the word or phrase.
  • The rest of the players have to act out the word or phrase.
  • Get a timer handy and give the team 1 minute to help the guesser guess the word or phrase.
  • The team who guesses more words by the end of it, is the winner.

2. Summer Photo Booth

What you need

  • Photo booth props 
  • Backdrop – you can use parts your summer party decoration set up as a perfect backdrop for photo booth; you can get some interesting angles. You can instead go for a hawaian table skirt for a great summer photo backdrop.

How to do it

  • Plan when it is a good time to gather guests around the party boy or girl in front of the backdrop. Give them the props to experiment with, while someone takes the photos.
  • A good time to take photos is when guests are trickling in at the beginning of the party. That will make sure that you won’t forget to take the “official” photos and it also saves from running after the guests during the party itself.
  • Another option is to do it just before cutting the cake. This will help you calm the children down especially after engaging themselves in some vigorous and competitive activities.

3. Friendship Bracelets

summer-party-activities-and-games

Friendship bracelets are a powerful way to get young people together.

What you need

Pro Tip 1: If you’re not familiar how to do friendship bracelets, it is a good idea to get some practice days ahead of the party. There are many ways how to go about it. We found the video below very helpful for beginners.

How to do it

  • Give each of your guests 4 lengths of colored strings 40” (1m) long.
  • Encourage guests to work in pairs.
  • Give every guest 4 lengths of thread – they may choose the colors they want.
  • Show them how to do the friendship bracelet.

Pro Tip 2: You may want to ask your guests if they are familiar with making friendship bracelets and rope those who are, to help the others come up with their own bracelet.

4. Tug Of War

summer-party-activities-and-games

This is an easy fun well-loved activity with most of kids.

What you need

How to do it

  • Just split your group into two teams and have them pull until one side wins.
  • Repeat for a couple of times, having the teams change sides at every attempt.

Pro Tip: If the rope that you have is not long enough, have your guests in three or four teams instead of two and make each one compete with the others, one at a time.

Safety Tip: Make sure that both sides are roughly balanced in terms of size and strength.

5. Limbo

summer-party-activities-and-games

A classic when it comes to outdoor pursuits, this is an activity that will attract even the most laid back of guests. See how low they can go.

What you need

  • Limbo kit (or you can just use a broom stick or a rope)

How to play Limbo

  • Get your guests to pass face up under a horizontal bar.
  • Each time they do it the bar is lowered and inch or two.
  • The guest who can go the lowest without falling is the winner.

    DIY Water Games

    On the other hand, there are others who cannot imagine a summer party without water being involved and without getting themselves soaked wet. So, we have prepared a list of water games that will keep these type of young guests enthralled and entertained for a long time.

    Short of holding a summer party near a pool or at the beach, these are some perfect games that will transform your backyard in a kind of water park. Though they need some preparation from your part, they are cheap to set up. Let the fun begin!

    Note: For most of these games kids should be wearing a swimsuit or at least they must have with them a change of clothing and a towel. You can inform their parents about this in the summer party invite.

    6. Gigantic Soap Bubbles

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    Soap bubbles are a favorite with little children. Make the bubbles huge and you’ll get the attention of the older ones as well.

    What you need

    For the soap mixture

    • Buckets
    • Liquid dish detergent
    • Guar gum (found in health shops)
    • Baking powder
    • Water

    For the bubble wand

    • 2 sticks or plastic pipes 3’ (90cm) long
    • Cotton string

    How to do it

    • Prepare in advance the soap mixture. Follow the video below for clear guidelines.
    • Assemble also the bubble wands as per same video instructions.

    Pro Tip: Get ready a number of buckets and wands, not just one, so that all your guests will have the opportunity to make their own giant bubbles. You can also add some competition, for example, who can make the largest soap bubble.

    Let the fun begin!

    7. Water Balloon Pinata

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    Pinata is always a hit with kids. This water balloon version is so cool and inexpensive to make that we always end up doing it over and over again for along the time during our kids’ celebrations.

    What you need

    • 12” (30cm) balloons
    • Bat
    • Blindfolds
    • String to hold the balloons

    How to play water balloon pinata

    • Fill a good number of balloons with water until they are three quarters their full capacity.
    • Fill the rest of the balloons with air and tie them up securely.

    Pro Tip: If you intend to blow up the balloons in advance make sure that you keep them in a cool place away from direct sun light. Latex balloons tend to pop or deflate in hot weather. To learn more go to: How long do balloons stay inflated?

    • Hang the balloon pinatas in the most secluded area of your backyard.
    • Only allow one participant to hit the pinata at a time.
    • Make sure that all guests are at a safe distance when the balloons are being hit.

    Safety Tip: Make sure that all guests are at a safe distance when the balloons are being hit.

    Go to our Quick A to Z Guide For Your Kid’s Party Pinata for more safety tips.

    The Quick A To Z Guide For Your Kid’s Party Pinata

    The Quick A To Z Guide For Your Kid’s Party Pinata

    Find here all the tricks an tips for a successful pinata at your kid’s party,  how to make a simple papier mache pinata in 7 easy steps, what do you put in a pinata and how to prepare children to play it safely. 

    Read more…

    8. Water Relay Races

    Water relay races are classic games for all to have fun in teams. If you know that the guests you’ll be hosting are on the competitive side, these kind of games will be a hit with them.

    In a nutshell, the goal of the water relay races we’re suggesting here is for each team to take the largest amount of water from point A to point B. This will be done using plastic cups, sponges and water balloons.

    What you need

    • Buckets full of water (one for each team) or a kiddie pool (just one filled with water to serve all the teams)
    • Plastic cups with small holes in them
    • Sponges
    • Water balloons
    • Empty water bottles (one for each team)
    • Funnels (one for each team)

    How to play

    • Get all your guests in teams of equal numbers.
    • Ask each team to stay in line, each member to stay some 6’ (2m) away from the next team mate.
    • Start with the plastic cups first. The first child needs to fill the first cup from the bucket and pass it on to the next player. The cup needs to be passed on through all the players until it reaches the last one who in turn must fill the water that remains in the cup in the empty bottle. Give each team the same number of cups. A funnel is placed on the empty bottle to make it easier for the players to fill up the bottles.
    • The team that manages to carry most water wins.
    summer-party-activities-and-games

    Pro Tip: How long should one relay round last? Teams can compete against time, say until 5 minutes are over. You can instead make a round stop when all the buckets are empty.

    • Move on to other relay rounds in the same way as with cups but this time using sponges soaked in water.
    summer-party-activities-and-games
    • Leave to the end relay rounds using water balloons. Players need to throw the latter to the next player until they are passed on to the last player who in turn must burst the balloons in the funnel to fill up the respective bottle.
    summer-party-activities-and-games

    How To Form Teams: An easy and fast way to divide kids in teams, is to assign each guest a number. Start from 1 till the number of groups you want to have, then start all over again. So, say you need four groups, looking at every child one by one, you say 1, 2, 3, 4, then 1, 2, 3, 4 and so on, until all kids have a number. Tell them to remember their number and group up together according to the given number. This way all the ones play together against all the twos, the threes and the fours.

    9. Dodgeball H₂O

    This is an amusing water balloon variation of the well-known dodgeball game.

    What you need

    • Water balloons
    • Cones (to mark the zones where the players can move)

    How to play Dodgeball H₂O

    If you’re not familiar with the game, the short clip above will give you a good idea how to play water balloon dodge ball.

    10. DIY Slip ’N Slide

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    This is ultimate in terms of fun. Kids love to slide on water.

    What you need

    How to do it

    • Follow this instructional video for the perfect DIY backyard slip ’n slide.

    Note: At one point in the video it is suggested to reduce to half the width of the plastic sheeting by cutting it lengthwise. We recommend to use the plastic sheeting as it is, that is the whole 10 feet in width.

    Giant Backyard Games

    If you then want to push your kid’s summer party a notch higher, you should invest in some giant backyard games. Having at least one of them set-up in your background will captivate the attention of the party attendees. Keep in mind that if you’ll be buying these giant backyard games, your own kids and all the fa

    11. Connect Four

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    Connect Four is great fun to play at a summer party in its gigantic form. The one we found here is sturdy and easy to assemble.

    12. Giant Tumble Tower

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    Tumble Tower or Jenga as it is more commonly known is. agreat way to create excitment and incite healthy competition.

    13. Kick Dart Game

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    This Kick Dart Game combines the games of darts and soccer to produce an innovative opportunity for kids to release energy and have fun in your backyard.

    14. Giant Toss

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    You can use Giant Toss equipment to create all sorts of tossing games at your kid’s summer party. 

    15. Bounce House or Above Ground Pool

    summer-party-activities-and-games

    A bounce house at your kid’s summer party will certainly be an attraction. An above ground pool is an awesome alternative.

    Pro Tip: If you’re not sure about buying a bounce house this time round, we recommend renting one.

    We have produced a series of articles that will equip you with all the information you need to have before going for a bounce house and what to do once it comes to your backyard.

    Wrapping Up Fun Summer Party Activities And Games For Kids

    We have listed and explained above 15 fun summer party activities and games that are designed to cater for different kinds of young guests, from relaxed and casual activities that require minimum physical effort, to games that will make your guests spend a lot of energy and get themselves wet.

    You will also find a spectrum of activities for a summer party that require no preparation from your part and others that are inexpensive to set up. You can of course go for a mix a match of activities and games from the three categories mentioned above.

    Just go and transform your backyard in a most outstanding venue fit for a memorable summer party for kids.

    Easy Summer Party Decorations

    Easy Summer Party Decorations

    It’s all about flamingoes, watermelons, pineapples, sunglasses, beach balls, ice-lollies and a lot of excitement that summer is here. You can create gorgeous summer party decorations…

    Read more…

    18 Fun Summer Party Food Ideas For Kids

    18 Fun Summer Party Food Ideas For Kids

    The nice summer weather is inspiring and presents so many possibilities for a summer-themed kids’ party. However, one thing you may not be sure of is, what food to offer kids at a summer party.

    Read more…

    Hi I'm Ann

    Hi I'm Ann

    Mom to three kids, I am the proud co-founder of Easy Kids' Parties. After a career in journalism and education, I diverted my skills to creating this website, with the aim of helping all those parents out there who wish to organize amazing and memorable parties for their kids but feel overwhelmed at the idea.  Discover more...

    Legal Information

    Easy Kids Parties is a participant in Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As Amazon Associates we earn from qualifying purchases. We also participate in other affiliate programs. Easy Kids Parties is compensated for referring business to these companies at no extra cost to you.