DIY Backyard Pan Am Games

A fun, kid-friendly way to celebrate the Games.

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Pan Am/Parapan Am Games

Everyone’s excited about the Pan Am/Parapan Am Games taking place this July and August. Why not bring some of that excitement home by holding kid-sized games in your own backyard? Make it fun with torch relays, crafts, medal presentation, food and music that mimic the real games and pay tribute to participating countries. We’ve put together some ideas for a great day of competition and laughs for kids and families in your neighborhood!
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Party Pre-Prep

In addition to setting up the games around your yard, you’ll need to do some preparation before guests arrive for all the extras you have planned. Our party suggestions include making flags from Pan Am countries for kids to wave and to use for crafts, a torch relay around the yard, and medals for presentation at the end of your games. Here’s what you’ll need to do:
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Crafts for Your Party

Before you start the games, have guests do the finishing touches on the sailboat and the medals. Decorate the sailboat. Let guests choose a flag from the country they want to represent. Provide a collection of waterproof markers and have kids draw their flag on the sail of the sailboat (for the Sailboat Race) and then attach the mast. Decorate the medals. Kids can draw the flag or other pictures on their medal, print words or use stickers. Each child will be presented with their own medal for their achievements at the close of the backyard games.
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Target Practice

Materials: 1 squirt gun, colourful paper cups Make a pyramid of cups and challenge kids to knock down as many as they can in 1 minute.
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Food for the Games

Fuel your young athletes with our selection of foods and snacks inspired by the countries participating in the Pan Am Games.
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Balloons in a Basket

Materials: pool noodles, softly inflated balloons, 4 baskets Arm two kids with pool noodles, then toss 10-12 balloons in the air, and see how many they can get into the baskets before the balloons hit the ground.  
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Soccer Ball Push

Materials: 2 soccer balls or balls of similar size Mark start and finish lines and have two kids at a time manoeuvre the balls with their heads only. Who will reach the finish line first?
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Sit Down Volleyball

Materials: 1 volleyball, badminton net Kids divide into two teams and play a game of volleyball with bums firmly planted on the ground.
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Tin Can Toss

Materials: 3 cans of different sizes, broomstick, chairs, small balls Provide kids with a handful of balls and see how many they can get into the cans in one minute.
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Sailboat Race

Materials: sailboats, kiddie pool filled with water, and straws Two at a time, kids take turns blowing through a straw to see who can get the sailboat across the pool fastest. If the boat falls over, back to the start they go.
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Obstacle Course

Pool Noodle Hurdles Kids jump over the noodle as volunteers hold it at the appropriate height for each child. Leap Frog Kids hop like a frog over cushions set up in a line with a space between each. Ladder Run Lay a ladder on the ground and have kids walk, run or hop through each rung. Balance Beam Kids take turns walking backwards along an 8’ long 2 x 4 laid on the grass or raised on blocks.

Author: LocalParent

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