Friends food, good weather, and lots of fun: what else does your barbecue need? Well, it depends on what kind of fun you want to have at your barbeque. When it comes to children-friendly activities, you probably have some idea of games to choose from.
Planning a BBQ is easy. Invite guests. Buy food. Hope for sunshine. But what will you do? Here are 42 easy BBQ games for adults. Yes, adults enjoy games. These games range from physical to intellectual. Some require supplies – others can be played sitting around the pool or campfire.
However, if you wish to keep adults entertained, you may need more nuanced inspiration. Read on to learn about some of the best barbeque party games for adults.
15 BBQ Games: No Supplies Required
Here are some of the fun games that can be played without any special supplies.
Charades is a classic game that is fun for all ages. Write prompts on pieces of paper and have teams try to guess the prompts as they are performed.
This game is also great for all seasons and locations.
2. Flip Cup
Flip cup may be familiar to you from college. In this game, you need cups from which participants will chug before attempting to flip them.
While you can put alcoholic beverages in the cups, you can also opt for non-alcoholic options such as water or lemonade.
3. Group Rock Paper Scissors
Group rock paper scissors are just like regular rock paper scissors, except on a much larger scale.
Participants participate in a rapid-fire rock paper scissors tournament. This activity is best in a large space in warmer weather
4. Improv Games
Try some improv games, including mirroring games “yes, and” and more.
These games are great team-building activities and can exist in several settings and types of weather.
While you can get a limbo stick, you can just as easily use a fallen tree branch or some other spare object.
This activity is good for all ages, all-weather, and in a fairly spacious setting.
6. Murder Mystery Game
While there are pre-made murder mystery games, you can also come up with your plot and characters.
These games are a great choice if you have guests with limited mobility.
7. Never Have I Ever
With never have I ever, you do not need any supplies beyond maybe a drink in your hand.
Share secrets and learn about your friend with this simple game.
8. Relay Race
A relay race can take whatever shape you want, and you can create it based on the abilities of your guests and the supplies you have available.
9. Scavenger Hunt
Creating a scavenger hunt is a great bbq game for adults that can keep your guests engaged.
A scavenger hunt is ideal in warm, dry weather, but this activity can be easily modified. It can be done indoors or even in a public space on a rainy day.
This game requires a little advance planning. Here’s a guide to planning a scavenger hunt for adults.
Spoons is a game that only requires cards and some spoons.
However, if you do not have any spoons available, you can use any other object or even stick your tongue out instead of taking a spoon.
11. Story Starter
Storytelling is a central part of any barbeque. Make an activity of it by having everyone get in on telling a story.
Go around in a circle, and every person adds a line or two to a story.
12. The “Newlywed” Game
Prepare questions related to your guests and see how well they know each other. No wedding required. If you like, you can create teams.
Find lists of trivia online and divide your guests into teams. Have them guess the answers to the trivia questions you pose.
This is a good activity to try if the weather is less than ideal.
14. Truth or Dare
This game can be as simple or complex as you want. You can have pre-prepared prompts, or you can let your guests come up with prompts on their own.
15. Two Truths and a Lie
Two truths and a lie is another great game if your group does not want to run around or if the weather is less than ideal.
27 BBQ Games (Supplies Required)
The following games need supplies, but they can all be easily acquired. Either make do with supplies on hand or order these in advance for your event.
1. Bean Bag Buckets
Bean bag buckets are a fun way to test out your bean bag toss skills at a higher level than cornhole.
This is a great team event – and doesn’t put anyone on the spot. And the soft bags mean no one is getting hurt.
2. Beat That
While lawn games are fun, Beat That is a board game that is less physical than some of the other options on this list.
You win by betting on your ability to complete ridiculous tasks of bouncing, hopping, flipping, rolling, and balancing household items.
3. Bocce Ball
Bocce Ball is a simple game that is fun in nice weather for four people. A set has everything you need for this fun game.
4. Corn Hole
This popular lawn game is ideal for a barbeque on a nice day. While corn hole usually needs two to four players, you can play with as many as you want.
Croquet is a fun and competitive small-group activity.
Most sets allow six players, and the game works well for several mobility levels.
6. Cross Net
A Cross Net allows you to play several games in a new way.
These games can include volleyball and badminton. Four people can play at a time.
Finska is a traditional Finnish game that is very similar to bowling. You can play this game with any number of players and in nice weather.
Here’s how to make your own set.
8. Giant Checkers
Giant checkers may only facilitate two players, but they will attract the attention of many more guests.
This game works well on a nice day, but can easily be brought inside if needed.
9. Giant Jenga
Giant Jenga is simply an oversized version of the classic party game.
You can play this game in any weather and with any amount of people.
10. Glow in the Dark Capture the Flag
If your barbeque continues into the evening, glow in the dark capture the flag is the activity you want.
Choose this game for any high-energy, active group.
11. Glowing Badminton
Glowing badminton is another game designed for use in the dark. It facilitates two to four players.
Horseshoes is a classic game in which you throw horseshoes to hook them around poles. This game is nice for several mobility levels.
Kubb is a simple but exciting classic Swedish game. Play this game in nice weather for up to six players.
Here are the rules, according to Kubb United.
14. Ladder Toss
Ladder Toss is a great game for two teams. You will need at least twenty feet of space to properly play this game.
15. Jumbo 4 to Score
This game is a large-format take on the classic game. It is a great barbeque game for two or more players.
16. Large Dominos
Dominos is a classic strategic game for at least two people. The large format version allows more participation.
17. Lawn Bowling
Lawn Bowling is an ideal, relaxing game for a nice day. It facilitates several players.
18. Lawn Darts
Lawn Darts is another lawn game ideal for a beautiful day. Make sure to follow all safety instructions with this game.
We have the soft-tip dark set with glow-in-the-dark target rings. It takes a bit of getting used to – but I prefer this over the blunted metal tip set.
19. Potato Sack Race
A potato sack race is a quite active barbeque party game. You will need a lot of space and a group that wants to be active.
20. Ring Swing
Ring Swing is a simple game that uses minimal supplies. The game can be played in all weather, and you do not need too much space.
This can be setup in the basement or in a covered gazebo.
21. Ring Toss
Ring Toss is another classic game that involves throwing objects to hit or encircle another object. It works well in nice weather, and it can facilitate an even number of people.
22. Makes S’mores
I know. S’mores are for kids. But are they? Everyone loves smores –
Here is the classic smore recipe and 6 variations.
23. Self-Sealing Water Balloons
Recapture childhood fun with self-sealing water balloons. These are ideal for anyone who wants to be fairly active.
Of course, it is a good idea to let your guests know what’s going to happen. Maybe designate a wet area and a dry area to avoid upsetting some of your guests.
Spikeball is a fun game that requires plenty of vertical space. It’s an active game – like volleyball – but easier.
Here’s how to play, as explained by Spikeball.
25. Tug of War
Tug of war is a classic game that allows a large number of people to play. While you can use any rope, there are plenty of items made specifically for this activity.
26. Yard Dice
A lot of the fun of Yard Dice stems from the extra large size. You can use these dice in several games, including the ones that are specifically designed for them.
27. Yard Pong
Yard Pong is a fun version of the college favorite game. This game is best in nice weather, and it can facilitate plenty of players and onlookers.
For windy days or uneven surfaces, add a little sand or water to each bucket so they don’t get knocked over or blow away.
It doesn’t take up much space, and it is great for all ages.
Looking for more suggestions? Check out these 14 camping activities for adults.
Keep reading: How Hot is a Campfire?
Up your cooking skills in our Campfire Cooking Guide
The right games and activities can make a barbeque an exciting and fun experience for everyone. Whether you opt for a game with plenty of parts or one that only requires your brain, there are many ways for you to have a blast.
- About the Author
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Dena Haines is a co-founder and blogger on GudGear – and is working to make it the best resource for outdoor gear and guides.
She also blogs about travel at Storyteller.Travel and photography at GudPixel. Dena is a partner at Storyteller Media, a publishing company she started with her husband, Bryan.