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42 BBQ Yard Games for Outdoor Parties





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In this article, you’ll discover 42 BBQ games that are perfect for your next outdoor party. These games are divided into two categories: 15 games that require no supplies and 27 games that do require supplies. From classic games like charades and trivia to fun yard games like bean bag buckets and giant Jenga, there’s something for everyone. You’ll also find helpful tips and resources for planning a scavenger hunt or making your own Finska set. With these exciting game options, prepare to have a blast at your next BBQ party!

The article provides 42 BBQ games for adults for outdoor parties. The games are divided into two categories: 15 that require no supplies and 27 that need supplies. Whether hosting a backyard BBQ, a family reunion, or a casual get-together with friends, these games will bring laughter and friendly competition to your outdoor party. So, let’s dive into the world of BBQ games and find the perfect ones for your next gathering!

No Supplies Needed For These BBQ Yard Games


Charades is a classic game that doesn’t require any supplies but guarantees plenty of entertainment. Divide your party into teams and choose someone to act out a word or phrase without speaking. The team members must guess the word within a specific time limit. This game is a great way to showcase your acting skills and get everyone laughing.

Flip Cup

Flip cup is a popular drinking game that can be enjoyed without alcohol as well. Divide your guests into two teams and give each person a cup filled with a designated amount of liquid. The objective is to drink the liquid as fast as possible and flip the cup upside down by flicking the rim with their finger. The first team to flip all their cups wins. This game is perfect for a laid-back and competitive atmosphere.


Get ready for limbo! All you need for this game is a sturdy bar or stick. Have your guests form a line and take turns under the bar without touching it. After each round, lower the bar slightly to make it more challenging. The person who can go the lowest without touching the bar wins. Limbo is a fun and interactive game that will surely bring out the competitive spirit in your guests.


Test your guests’ knowledge with a game of trivia. Prepare a list of questions from various categories and divide your guests into teams. Ask each group the same questions and keep a score of how many they get right. The team with the highest score at the end wins. From pop culture to history, trivia games are a great way to engage your guests and keep their brains working.

BBQ Yard Games Requiring Supplies

Bean Bag Buckets

Bean bag buckets is a fun tossing game that requires a set of bean bags and a series of buckets. Place the buckets at different distances and assign points to each one. The objective is to throw the bean bags into the buckets and score as many points as possible. This game can be played individually or in teams, and it’s a great way to test your accuracy and aim.

Bocce Ball

Bocce ball is a popular lawn game that requires a set of bocce balls. The objective of the game is to throw your balls as close as possible to the target ball, called the pallino. The team or individual with the ball most relative to the pallino scores points. Bocce ball is a leisurely game that players of all ages and skill levels can enjoy.


Cornhole is a classic BBQ game that requires two elevated boards with holes and a set of bean bags. The objective is to toss the bean bags into the holes on the opposite board while standing far away. Scoring varies depending on where the bean bags land. Cornhole is a popular game for outdoor parties and can be played individually or in teams.

Giant Jenga

Take Jenga to the next level with a giant version of the game. This game requires a set of oversized wooden blocks that you stack into a tower. Players take turns removing one block at a time without causing the tower to collapse. Giant Jenga is entertaining and adds a visual element to your outdoor party. Watch out for those wobbly towers!

Scavenger Hunt Planning

Planning a scavenger hunt adds an exciting element to any outdoor party. It requires some preparation, but the result is worth it. Here are some tips for creating a memorable scavenger hunt experience:

Tips for Creating a Scavenger Hunt

  • Choose a theme: Decide on a theme for your scavenger hunt, such as nature, landmarks, or even a specific era. This will help guide the items and clues you choose.
  • Create a list: Make a list of items or clues that participants need to find or solve. Be creative and consider the age and interests of your guests.
  • Set a time limit: Determine how long the scavenger hunt will last and communicate it to the participants. This adds anticipation and keeps the game moving.
  • Provide instructions: Explain the scavenger hunt rules, including any boundaries or restrictions. Make sure everyone understands the objective and how to win.
  • Safety first: Consider safety precautions, such as avoiding dangerous areas or providing clues that are easy to find without risking injury.

List of Items to Include

When creating a scavenger hunt, choosing a diverse range of items or clues is important to keep it interesting. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Natural objects: Include a unique-looking leaf, a smooth rock, or a feather.
  • Landmark locations: Create clues that lead participants to specific landmarks or hidden spots.
  • Riddles and puzzles: Challenge your guests with riddles or puzzles they need to solve to find the next clue.
  • Photo opportunities: Incorporate photo tasks, such as taking a selfie with a specific object or posing uniquely.
  • Team challenges: Include activities that require teamwork, such as building a structure using natural materials or completing a physical challenge together.

Setting Scavenger Hunt Boundaries

Decide on the boundaries for the scavenger hunt to ensure that participants stay within a designated area. This could be a specific section of a park or your backyard. Use landmarks or natural boundaries to define them and make it clear to the participants where they can search for items or solve clues.

Prize Ideas

A scavenger hunt wouldn’t be complete without a prize for the winners. Consider some of these prize ideas to motivate your participants:

  • Gift cards: Give the winners a gift card to a local restaurant, store, or online retailer.
  • Handmade trophies: Create personalized trophies or medals for the winning team or individual.
  • Outdoor gear: Provide outdoor-themed prizes like camping equipment, picnic baskets, or sports equipment.
  • Customized t-shirts: Design and print t-shirts with the event name and date to commemorate the occasion.
  • Experience vouchers: Offer vouchers for unique experiences, such as a hot air balloon ride, a cooking class, or a spa day.

Making Your Own Finska Set

Finska is a famous Finnish lawn game that involves throwing a wooden pin to knock down numbered wooden blocks. Making your own Finska set is a relatively simple and cost-effective way to bring this fun game to your BBQ party. Here’s what you’ll need:

Materials Needed

  • Wooden dowel: Start with a wooden dowel around 12 inches long and 2 inches in diameter.
  • Wooden blocks: Obtain 12 wooden blocks, each measuring approximately 8 inches in length, 2 inches in width, and 1 inch in thickness.
  • Paint: Choose outdoor paint in various colors to decorate the wooden blocks.
  • Sandpaper: Use sandpaper to smooth out the edges of the wooden dowel and blocks.
  • Measuring tape: Measure and mark the placement of the numbers on the blocks.
  • Paintbrushes and a sealant: Use paintbrushes to apply the paint and a sealant to protect the blocks from wear and tear.

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Sand the wooden dowel and blocks to prevent splinters.
  2. Paint each wooden block a different color. Allow the paint to dry completely.
  3. Use a measuring tape to mark off even sections on each block for the numbers.
  4. Paint the numbers on the blocks corresponding to the sections marked off.
  5. A sealant protects the wooden blocks from water damage and outdoor conditions.
  6. Once the blocks are dry, arrange them in a pyramid formation, with the highest-numbered block at the top.

Customization Ideas

While the classic Finska set consists of numbered wooden blocks, you can get creative and customize your set to match your party theme or personal style. Here are some ideas:

  • Personalized blocks: Instead of numbers, paint each block with the names or initials of your guests.
  • Theme-based decorations: Decorate the blocks with symbols or designs that match your party theme, such as beach motifs, sports logos, or movie characters.
  • Glow-in-the-dark paint: Use glow-in-the-dark paint for extra fun during evening BBQ parties.
  • Mosaic patterns: Create intricate mosaic patterns on the blocks using different colored paints.

Tips for Playing Finska

Finska is an enjoyable and strategic game that requires skill and precision. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your Finska set:

  1. Aim carefully: Take your time to aim before throwing the wooden pin. Adjust your throw based on the position of the blocks and try to knock down multiple blocks with one throw.
  2. Strategic throwing: Consider the placement of the blocks and try to knock down those with higher point values first.
  3. Keep score: Keep track of each player’s score on a piece of paper or a chalkboard. The player who reaches exactly 50 points wins the game.
  4. Fair play: Encourage good sportsmanship by congratulating opponents on well-executed moves and following the game’s rules.
  5. Play with teams: Finska can be played individually or in teams. Choose a format that best suits the number of players and the desired level of competition.

Game Rules and Variations

Before diving into the vast array of games available for BBQ parties, it’s important to establish some general rules and consider how to adapt the games to your group size, skill levels, and whether or not to incorporate drinking games.

General BBQ Game Rules

  • Respect the rules: Make sure all players understand and follow the rules of each game. It’s essential to maintain fairness and a friendly atmosphere throughout the party.
  • Encourage participation: Offer various game options and allow guests to choose which games they want.
  • Keep score: Consider keeping score for certain games to add a competitive element and keep track of each player’s progress.
  • Provide breaks: Allow for breaks between games to allow players to relax, socialize, and grab some food and refreshments.
  • Safety first: Remind players to be aware of their surroundings and avoid unnecessary risks during the games.

Modifying Game Rules for Different Group Sizes

Depending on the number of participants, some games may need to be modified to accommodate different group sizes. Here are some ideas:

  • Team games: If you have a large group, consider playing games that can be played in teams. This allows more players to participate and adds a collaborative element to the games.
  • Tournament-style games: For larger groups, set up a tournament-style format where teams or individuals compete against each other in different games. Keep track of wins and losses to determine the ultimate winner.

Adapting Games for Different Skill Levels

When hosting a BBQ party, it’s essential to consider the skill levels of your guests. Here are some ways to adapt games to accommodate different skill levels:

  • Beginner-friendly modifications: For games that require specific skills, provide beginner-friendly changes to make it easier for less experienced players to participate. For example, in a volleyball game, allow players to catch or use their chest to hit the ball instead of being perfect at bumping or setting.

Incorporating Drinking Games

If your party has a more relaxed atmosphere and you want to incorporate alcohol into the games, there are plenty of drinking games. Here are some popular options:

  • Beer Pong: A classic drinking game where players throw ping pong balls into cups of beer. If the ball lands in a cup, the opponent must drink the contents of that cup.
  • Kings: A card-based drinking game where each card has a specific rule. Players take turns drawing cards and follow the assigned rule.

Safety Precautions for Outdoor Games

While outdoor games can be a lot of fun, it’s essential to prioritize safety to ensure everyone has a good time without any accidents. Here are some safety precautions to consider:

Choosing Suitable Game Areas

When selecting the area for your outdoor games, keep these tips in mind:

  • Clear the space: Remove any obstacles or debris that could pose a tripping hazard during the games.
  • Check the surface: Make sure the ground or playing surface is even and free of any dangerous objects.
  • Provide shade: If hosting an event during hot weather, provide shaded areas for players to take breaks and avoid heatstroke or sunburn.
  • Be aware of surroundings: Consider any potential hazards nearby, such as bodies of water, roads, or areas with dense vegetation.

Using Protective Equipment

Certain games may require protective equipment to minimize the risk of injuries. Here are some examples:

  • Helmets: If playing contact or high-impact games, such as football or archery tag, provide helmets to protect participants’ heads.
  • Knee and elbow pads: For games involving running or physical contact, knee and elbow pads can help prevent injuries.
  • Sunscreen and bug repellent: Encourage participants to protect their skin from the sun’s harmful rays and apply bug repellent to avoid bites.

Monitoring Game Play for Potential Hazards

Monitoring the participants and actively watching for potential hazards is essential during the games. Here’s what to keep an eye on:

  • Overexertion: Watch for signs of fatigue or exhaustion in players, and encourage them to take breaks and hydrate as needed.
  • Unsportsmanlike behavior: Ensure that players are playing fair and not engaging in aggressive or dangerous behavior that could lead to injuries.

Providing First Aid and Emergency Contacts

It’s essential to be prepared for any injuries or emergencies. Here are some steps you can take:

  • First aid kit: Have a well-stocked one available and ensure someone at the party knows how to use it.
  • Emergency contact information: Keep a list of emergency contact numbers, including 911 and local hospitals, easily accessible in case of a more severe injury or emergency.

Team Building Games for BBQ Parties

BBQ parties are a time to relax and have fun and an excellent opportunity for team building and bonding. Here are some team-building games to consider for your outdoor party:

Three-Legged Race

Divide your guests into two teams and have each pair tie one leg to their partner’s leg. The objective is to race to the finish line without falling. This game requires cooperation and coordination, making it a perfect team-building activity.

Trust Fall

Trust fall is a classic team-building exercise that helps build trust and communication. Have one person stand with their back to a group of people and fall backward, trusting their teammates to catch them. This game encourages trust-building and is best reserved for parties where participants know each other well.

Human Knot

In this game, participants stand in a close circle and join hands randomly. The challenge is to untangle the human knot without letting go of any indicators. This game requires teamwork, problem-solving, and effective communication to separate the knot successfully.

Tug of War

Tug of War is a competitive game that tests the strength and teamwork of participants. Divide your guests into two equal teams and give them a long rope with a designated center mark. The objective is for each team to pull the rope towards their side, trying to force their opponents to cross the center mark.

Icebreaker Games to Get the Party Started

Icebreaker games are a great way to kick off your BBQ party and get everyone mingling. Here are some games to consider:

Two Truths and a Lie

Each guest takes turns sharing two true statements and one false statement about themselves. The other guests have to guess which information is false. This game encourages conversation and helps guests get to know each other better.

Never Have I Ever

In this game, participants take turns saying something they have never done before. If someone in the group has done that activity, they have to take a sip of their drink. This game is a fun way to reveal exciting and unexpected experiences.

The Name Game

Have guests sit in a circle and choose someone to start with. That person says their name and an adjective that begins with the same letter as their name, such as “Kind Karl” or “Sweet Sarah.” The person to their right then repeats the previous person’s name and adjective and adds their own. This game helps guests remember each other’s names while adding a fun twist.

Pass the Ball

Stand in a circle and pass a ball around while playing music. When the music stops, the person holding the ball has to answer a question or perform a designated action, such as telling a joke or making a dance move. This game brings laughter and liveliness to your BBQ party.

42 BBQ Yard Games

Active Games for Energetic Partygoers

If you have a group of energetic partygoers, consider incorporating active games into your BBQ party. Here are some ideas:

Capture the Flag

Divide your guests into two teams and designate areas as home bases for each group. Place two flags or markers at each home base. The objective is for each team to try and capture the other team’s flag while defending their own. This game requires strategy, agility, and teamwork.

Tag Games

Tag games like freeze tag or flashlight tag are a great way to get everyone moving and laughing. Choose a designated area for the game and establish boundaries. The game starts with one person being “it” and trying to tag the other players. When ordered, a player must freeze until another player unfreezes them by touching them.

Obstacle Course

Set up an obstacle course with various challenges, such as crawling under a tarp, jumping over hurdles, and maneuvering through tires. Time each participant as they complete the course, and the person with the fastest time wins. An obstacle course is a fantastic way to challenge guests physically and mentally.

Sack Race

Organize a sack race by providing each participant with large burlap sacks or pillowcases. Line them up and have them hop inside the sacks to the finish line. This classic game is a hilarious way to get everyone laughing and jumping around.

Relaxed Games for Casual Mingling

Not all guests may be up for highly active games, so having some relaxed options for casual mingling is essential. Here are a few suggestions:

Giant Connect Four

Set up a giant version of Connect Four where players take turns dropping their colored discs into the slots. The objective is to get four of their colored discs in a row, either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. This game is perfect for casual mingling as players can come and go as they please.

Carnival Games

Create a mini carnival atmosphere with games like a ring toss, balloon darts, or a bean bag toss. Set up different stations where guests can try their luck and win prizes. This adds a fun and nostalgic element to your BBQ party.

Garden Tic-Tac-Toe

Transform your lawn into a giant tic-tac-toe board using ropes or chalk. Divide guests into two teams and have them take turns placing their chosen symbol (X or O) on the board. The first team to get three of their symbols in a row wins. Garden tic-tac-toe is a casual game for easy socializing and friendly competition.

Ring Toss

Please set up a ring toss game by placing a series of pegs or posts at varying distances and having guests throw rings to try and land on them. Offer different point values for different pegs or posts, and keep score to determine the winner. Ring toss is a relaxed game that can be played individually or in teams.

42 BBQ Games for Adult Outdoor Parties

Competitive Games for Avid Competitors

If your guests love friendly competition and are up for a challenge, consider incorporating some competitive games into your BBQ party. Here are a few suggestions:

Archery Tag

Archery tag combines elements of archery, dodgeball, and tag into one exciting game. Divide your guests into two teams and provide them with foam-tipped arrows and bows. The objective is to tag members of the opposing team using their hands. Archery tag requires accuracy, strategy, and agility and is perfect for adrenaline junkies.


Set up a volleyball net in your backyard or nearby park and divide your guests into two teams. The objective is to hit the volleyball over the net and prevent it from touching the ground on your side. Volleyball is a classic competitive game that requires teamwork, coordination, and quick reflexes.


If you have access to a tennis court, tennis is a fantastic competitive game for BBQ parties. Divide your guests into pairs or play singles matches. Tennis is a great way to work out while enjoying some friendly competition.


If you have a foosball table available, set it up for some intense matches. Divide your guests into teams and let the games begin. Foosball is a fast-paced game that requires hand-eye coordination and strategic thinking.

Mind Games to Challenge Intellectuals

For guests who enjoy mental challenges and intellectual stimulation, consider incorporating some mind games into your BBQ party. Here are a few ideas:


Set up a chessboard and challenge your guests to a game of chess. Chess is a strategic game that requires critical thinking and planning ahead. It’s a great way to engage guests’ minds and encourage friendly competition.

Puzzles and Riddles

Place various puzzles and riddles around the party area for guests to solve. You can create a puzzle station where guests can gather and work together to solve brain teasers and riddles. Puzzles and riddles encourage critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Word Games

Word games like Scrabble or Bananagrams are perfect for BBQ parties. Set up a designated area where guests can come and go, creating words and challenging each other’s vocabulary. Word games stimulate the mind and create a lively atmosphere.


Provide Sudoku puzzles for guests to solve individually or in teams. Sudoku is a numbers-based puzzle game that challenges logical thinking and problem-solving skills. It’s a great way to engage guests’ minds and promote friendly competition.

Water Games to Cool Off in the Summer Heat

Water games are a fantastic way to cool off and have fun if you host a BBQ party in the summer. Here are some water games to consider:

Water Balloon Toss

Pair up your guests and have them stand a short distance apart. Each pair tosses a water balloon back and forth, taking a step back after each successful catch. The team that can toss the balloon the farthest without it breaking wins. Water balloon toss is a refreshing and playful game that cools everyone down.

Slip ‘n Slide

Set up a slip ‘n slide in your backyard and let the fun begin. Guests can take turns sliding down the slippery surface in their bathing suits. Slip ‘n slide brings out the inner child in everyone and provides a refreshing break from the summer heat.

Water Gun Fight

Divide your guests into teams and provide them with water guns. The goal is to soak opposing team members while avoiding getting wet yourself. Water gun fights are thrilling to cool off and create lasting memories.

Dunk Tank

If you want to go all out, consider renting a dunk tank for your BBQ party. Guests can take turns sitting on the platform while others try to hit the target and dunk them into a water tank. Dunk tanks are a guaranteed crowd-pleaser and a surefire way to beat the heat.


In conclusion, organizing a BBQ party for adults can be a blast with the proper selection of games. The article has provided a comprehensive list of 42 matches divided into categories, ranging from team-building games and icebreakers to active games and mind games. Whether you prefer games requiring no supplies or specific equipment, there’s something for everyone. Remember to prioritize safety, provide breaks, and encourage friendly competition to ensure a memorable and enjoyable experience. So, grab your sunscreen, fire up the grill, and prepare for a day filled with laughter, fun, and unforgettable memories at your next adult outdoor BBQ party.

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