via The YMCA of Austin: Summer is not over yet! Your flip flops may have seen better days, but you can still take steps to keep the fun going as we celebrate Family Fun Month in August. Now’s the time to squeeze in a few more family memories before the new school year starts. Here are a few ideas to get you going—and don’t worry: none of them require a drop of sunscreen!

  1. Make a blanket fort. This is a classic, and you can make the fort as big or small as you like. Start in the morning and designate the spot as the day’s reading nook. Pile on the pillows and turn it into a nap corner.
  2. Create a summer memories time capsule. Collect photos, write down stories and toss in a few souvenirs to preserve the good times for enjoyment later. Mason jars and shoe boxes make great capsule containers.
  3. Bake cookies together. Whip up a batch of sugar cookies and let each family member personalize their treats with icing and sprinkles. Even simple shapes like circles and squares can be decorated to become monograms or emojis.
  4. Mix your own soap bubbles. This recipe makes a great hard-to-pop batch: 1 cup water, 2 tablespoons dish soap and 1 tablespoon glycerin. Experiment with different bubble wands made from drinking straws, pipe cleaners or the top half of a water bottle.
  5. Hold a family game night. Enjoy the classics or try something new. Don’t forget to think outside the box and include games like charades, hide-and-seek and balloon volleyball.
  6. Set up a build-your-own meal. Each family member can have fun designing their own plates. Some ideas include funny-face pancakes with pieces of fruit and whipped cream, pizzas with veggie and pepperoni shapes and frozen yogurt sundaes with all the trimmings.
  7. Turn an everyday dinner into a fancy affair. Pull out the cloth napkins and candlesticks. Toast each other before you dine. Even pizza looks better by candlelight!
  8. Have a water fight. Once the sun goes down, take the gang outdoors for fun with super soakers and water balloons (or use sponges for a more environmentally-friendly option). Set up a slip-and-slide, if you’re feeling extra peppy.
  9. Go star-gazing. Try to find constellations. Take a drive outside the city for best viewing. The annual Perseid Meteor Shower peaks on August 12. Even with the moon three-quarters full, you can still expect to see about 40 to 50 meteors per hour at the peak.
  10. Keep the fun going. Give each family member strips of paper to write down things they like to do. Put the strips in a jar and as the year goes on, pull out a strip and make it happen!

via Reserve America: You’ve done the impossible and scheduled a time when the whole family can get together.

Make this gathering one to remember with a few family reunion games. Not only are they fun for all ages, but they’re a great way to elicit lots of laughter and create lasting memories.

Make a Family Album
Set up an area where people can gather between activities and meals to do crafts. An extra screened-in, family-size tent, or pop-up shelter would be an ideal place to set up. Ask everyone to bring copies of family photos that can be compiled into a family photo album and encourage everyone to decorate their own pages over the course of the weekend.

Here is a list of basic supplies to get you started:

  • Construction paper
  • Stickers
  • Stamps
  • Glue
  • Scissors (consider using child-safe scissors)
  • Crayons, markers, colored pencils or colorful pens
  • Glitter (although it can get messy)
  • A blank scrapbook

The Banana game

Ask all willing family members to line up. Tie a string around a banana and hang the banana from each player’s waist so that it hovers just above the ground; then put a whiffle ball in front of each player. Participants must use their hips to swing the banana so that it hits the ball. The first player whose ball crosses the finish line—about 30 feet away—wins. It sounds awkward, but it’s a riot.

Play Ball

Group ball games are some of the best family reunion activities because they allow everyone to play together. Some games you can easily plan for include:

  • VolleyballBocce ball
  • Baseball or softball
  • Soccer

Water Balloon Toss

On hot days, this family reunion game is a must. Have everyone pick a partner and stand facing each other. Start standing two-feet apart, and after each toss, take one step backwards. The team who tosses the balloon the farthest without letting it pop wins.

Quick tip: It’s always fun to have prizes on hand for the winners—even something small and goofy would suffice.

Egg Race

Another family reunion favorite, the egg race is great for a big group. Have everyone choose a partner, face each other, and then stand about 30 feet apart. All players have to put spoons in their mouths. The first player places an egg on their spoon and runs it to their teammate across the way. They must transfer the egg from their spoon to their teammate’s spoon, without letting it fall. The teammate then has to run the egg back to the other side to win.

Everyone is racing against each other, and if you drop the egg, your team is out.

Family Talent Show

Have each family member perform a talent in front of the whole group. Even people who think they don’t have talents should be able to come up with something.

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Sing a song
  • Do a theatrical reading
  • Recite a poem from memory
  • Perform a skit with one or more family members (i.e. Who’s on First by Abbott and Costello)
  • Juggle
  • Play an instrument
  • Do a dance (individual or with a partner)

Quick tip: This is one of the best family reunion activities to record with a video camera and watch at future reunions.

Story Time

This is a great activity for the campfire. Ask everyone prepare a story about someone else in advance—remember, embarrassing is good, but maybe not too embarrassing—and plan to share it with everyone one night.

If you have a large group, choose one person from each of the nuclear families to tell a story about someone else.

Quick tip: Try to think of something that most of your extended family doesn’t already know. The best stories are those that reveal something unusual, sweet or funny about that family member’s personality.

Scavenger Hunt

A scavenger hunt can be about searching and collecting specific items or solving clues that lead to treasure. This can be as basic or intricate as you want to make it. Kids can play individually, or if you want siblings and cousins to build camaraderie have them play in teams of two or more.

Some of the items on their list can include:

A particular type of leaf or flower that’s native to the areaKindling for the fireLitter that can be recycledA piece of pine barkWild mushroomA signature from the oldest person at the reunion (let the kids figure out who it is)
If you want to get fancy, you can create clues that they have to solve along the way.

Quick tip: Set parameters by telling the kids that they have to stay within 50 or 100 feet of the campsite, or that they have to stay within eyesight of the camping area.

Family Trivia

Send a questionnaire to all family members before the reunion so you can collect information. This will help you compile the list of trivia questions to ask during the reunion.

During the gathering, split the group into several teams—the size and amount of teams will depend on how large your family is. You can do this Jeopardy-style or take turns asking each team questions like in traditional trivial pursuit.

You can create categories such as:

  • Love and Marriage
  • Work Life
  • Sports
  • Art and History
  • Middle Names
  • Detention (what different people have gotten in trouble for over the years—stick to minor, funny offenses)

And here are some sample trivia questions:

  • Grandma came to the U.S. in what year?
  • Uncle Jack played soccer for which Division I college team?
  • Someone in this group has always wanted to be an astronaut. Who is it?


You can play with a traditional game set or come up with your own list of things to act out. If you want to create the cards yourself, have everyone in the group write the following little pieces of paper:

  • One movie
  • One famous person
  • One phrase
  • One book
  • One Activity