Tuesday, April 26, 2016
V is for Volleyball
Volleyball is a great place to start when thinking about games to arrange for reunion guests. Arrange for games that appeal to all ages, from small children to elderly family members. Croquet and badminton will appeal to those who are less active, and to satisfy the most active of the group, set up a volleyball net, away from windows! A board game tournament can involve many of the reunion participants. Draw an outline of the players who are competing on a poster board or a chalkboard, with successive eliminations leading to the winner.
To make the reunion feel less a circle of group therapy and more of a free flowing event, with people streaming in and out of the main visiting area, have activities that can make it easy to form small groups. A tournament works very well.
Not everyone can play chess, and checkers is too elementary, so pick a game like Jenga. Pair up opponents, and then have an outline that progresses each winner to the next round with someone else, until you get the two remaining players to battle it out for champion! It can be very loose with the timing, as long as the competition is progressing within the space of a day.
For very active teens and young adults, a volleyball tournament, best two out of three, depending on how many participants you have, is a good activity for those with lots of energy and a strong arm.
Older adults may enjoy playing croquet, a game that is relaxing and that may bring back memories from other gatherings in their childhood. Have a badminton net and equipment handy, as not everyone wants the intensity of volleyball. This is a good game to play as doubles.
A run off championship can be utilized here also. There is nothing wrong with a little good-natured competition, and it will keep people from feeling sluggish. They can visit in between the games and playing together can create memories and also get them sharing about themselves regarding current things in their lives. It’s a way to learn about others as they play.
Have some rainy day activities available too. Twister is a good game, along with some not so retro toys like hula-hoops, jump ropes and a hopscotch grid on your garage floor. It can rain all it wants to outside, but kids can be in the garage or basement enjoying the simple pleasures of playing.
For adults, make a crossword puzzle using clues that they would remember from their years growing up together. A crossword puzzle is not that difficult to create; there are sites on the Internet that can give you printouts of ones you come up with yourself. Print them out on brightly colored paper and pass them out one afternoon when conversation is lagging. It can serve as a reminder of memories and stories to share.
By having both sedentary and active games planned in advance, no one will be sitting around asking what’s next.