Soak a bunch of t-shirts in water, place them in plastic bags, and then stick them in the freezer overnight. The next day, hold a race to see who can “defrost” and pull on a frozen t-shirt the quickest. This is a great choice to play on a sweltering day—you’ll want to keep the chilly t-shirt on even after the race is over!
Slip and slides are fun enough on their own, but turning one into a game? Even better. Throw yourself down the slide, stand up, spin around, and try to get a frisbee through a hole to earn points for your team.
Teams compete to see who can set up a picnic first (lay down the blanket, set up the silverware and plates, etc.). When one player finishes setting it up, they rush to get everything back in the basket, and then pass it off to the next player.
Make a chalkboard to put on the side of your garage (or a fence) and use it to play a giant outdoor version of Pictionary (basically charades, but with drawing). You can also use the board to keep score for any other yard game.
Pie eating contests are messy and hilarious, but they tend to make people feel ill from overeating: this game allows you to have messy food fun *without* gorging. You hide small items (like gummy bears or peanut M&M’s) in giant plates of spaghetti, set the plates down on a tarp-covered picnic table, and have the contestants search for them—using their mouths!
If you’re not bothered by the idea of actually eating something, play this sandwich making relay race game. Teams line up beside a table and work together to make a sandwich FAST (one person spreads the mayo, one person adds the meat, etc.). When the meal gets to the end of the line, the last person has to eat it.