Sunday, July 1, 2012

Big Time Camping Fun...Obstacle Course Style

When it comes to a big-time pay-off program for a reasonable cost, I really don't think anything beats an obstacle course or relay race for an event.  These are your everyday, same old, same old. They are memorable and silly and appeal to pretty much everyone and every age.  Okay, they take a lot of work.  They take a lot of time.  They may require many hands to put together, facilitate, troubleshoot, and clean up.  But you'll be glad you did it, and most importantly, so will your guests.

Here are some ideas for a camping or outdoor-themed course.  Combine a few events on different courses for different age groups so that everyone is challenged, and no one gets hurt.
Bandanas, little tubes of aloe, insect repellant or sunscreen, sunglasses, flip flops, granola bars and fruit leather are great outdoorsy and summery prizes for all contestants.

Sleeping Bag Relay - climb into a sleeping bag and pull yourself to the finish line using only your arms.   You have to have the bag with you to win!

Bat Cave - Great for little ones...Drape a tablecloth or black butcher paper over a table.  Hang brown and black paper bat cutouts underneath the table. Children crawl through without hitting the bats.

Log Limbo - Prop dowel rods or other long sticks (perhaps draped in fake Christmas greenery) between chairs, tables, or shelves at crazy angles and heights.  Everyone has to make it over or under the logs without knocking any askew.

Feed the Hungry Birds - Basically bean bag toss, but contestants shoot rubberband "worms" into the "mouths" of the birds.  Feed the Hungry Bear with a few skillfully sown fish-shaped bean bags would be very excellent, too.

Rucksack Relay - Competitors have to fit all of the objects into their backpack or onto their bodies and race to the finish line.  Ponchos, unfolded maps (yikes!), percolators, thermoses, fishing rods, shoes, hats, the bigger and sillier the better.

Marshmallow Roast - A team of players has to move a marshmallow from point A to point B using bamboo touching with fingers allowed...without dropping it on the floor.

Marshmallow Race - Each contestant has to balance a marshmallow on their forehead or head from point A to point B.  No hands!

Over the River - Tape paper "stones" to the floor.  Each person has to hop from stone to stone (with one leg, with one leg and their arms behind the back, with the big, heavy rucksack from the earlier event on their back, etc) without "falling into the water."

Okay, the possibilities are endless.  I hope this inspires some great camping-themed programs this summer...and makes everyone a few great memories!

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