Fun Water Games

Fun water games don't need a beach or a pool. And water games for children can make fun adult games, too. Include these active water balloon games on your list of family reunion game ideas.

Looking for summer family reunion game ideas? Jump in the water!

Fun water games will keep your family cool and entertained. There’s nothing worse than being hot and tired and surrounded by crabby relatives!

These games are played without a beach or pool. Just make sure you have adequate unobstructed space available to keep the fun as safe as possible. A wide open grassy area is ideal.

Water balloon games

Many fun water games include the use of water balloons. In most cases, you’ll want to have lots (and lots) of balloons filled well in advance. They’ll pop if you put them on grass, so store them a large bucket or tub.

You’ll also want to keep them out of sight until you need them since, well… do you know how tempting water balloons are, especially to 12-year-old boys?? A nozzle attachment is a must-have but it will still take 30-60 minutes to fill 100-ish small balloons (about a 5-gallon bucket full).

When in doubt, fill more than you think you’ll need and allow more time to fill them than you think it will take.

Water Volleyball

With two people holding one towel between them like a giant sling shot, volley a water balloon back and forth over a volleyball or badminton net. Well, until the balloon pops, that is.

Hot Potato

Fun water games don't have to be overly complicated. Simply playing a traditional game with a water component can provide hours of entertaining fun.

In this Hot Potato version, a water balloon becomes the hot potato – which you don’t want to be caught holding. Keep the "hot potato" moving around the circle while the music is playing. If you’re holding the balloon when the music stops, you have to break the balloon on your head.

Balloon Toss

Fun water games can be played by individuals, partners or teams. For the balloon toss, you need a partner or an entire team. Two people face each other and gently toss a water balloon back and forth. Take a step backwards each time the balloon is safely caught. If the balloon is dropped or breaks, grab a new one and start over. Determine the winner by which team breaks the least number of balloons during a specific time period or by which team tosses the balloon the farthest without breaking it.

Capture the Flag

Capture the Flag is one of my favorite active family reunion game ideas. And with a few adjustments, the traditional Capture the Flag becomes a water game for children or adults.

Instead of a flag, use – you got it – a water balloon. Instead of trying to freeze your opponents by touching them, spray them with a squirt bottle. To unfreeze a teammate, squirt them again! To capture the "flag" (water balloon), you have to break the balloon.

Target Practice

Use a bulls eye target or simply aim for a soda can on a fence post. Take turns throwing water balloons at your target. It’s great fun to watch them splash even when they don’t land where you think they should. Use referees and keep points or just throw for fun.

Don't forget that YOU can submit YOUR favorite fun water games, too!

More Fun Water Games

Sponge Relay

Divide into equal teams. Give each team a bucket full of water and a large sponge at the starting line. (Old gallon-sized ice cream buckets work great and you can find cheap party supplies, including sponges, at your local dollar store.) Another empty bucket for each team is placed a few yards away.

The first person in each line soaks their sponge with water from the first bucket and then rushes a few yards to squeeze the water into a second bucket. Then they rush back to their team and pass the sponge onto the next person in line.

The object of the game is to get the most water from one bucket into the other.

Old Fashioned Water Fight

Some of my favorite things are "old fashioned," so it's not surprising to find "old fashioned" included in my list of fun water games! This game is an oldie but goodie. Use water, squirt guns (small, soakers or something in between), water balloons, garden hoses, surgical tubing (tie a knot in one end and fill with water from the tap from the other end) or even buckets.

But be warned: the older the kids, the more water they will want to use. So make sure that the grandmas and great aunts and uncles remain out of the line of fire and that your mom’s purse doesn’t get soaked.

Water fights are often spontaneous and start out innocently but quickly gain momentum. It seems they usually end right before someone gets hurt, when one of the responsible adults says, "Okay, that’s enough!" The object of the game? To fight boredom and to get wet.

If you want to maintain some control, fill a few 5-gallon buckets with water and use only squirt guns. Fill the squirt guns by submersing them under water until the air bubbles clear.

Duck, Duck, Splash!

Sit in a circle and place one person who is "it" on the outside of the circle with a wet sponge. Then, instead of saying "Duck, Duck, Goose," with a tap on the head, it’s "Duck, Duck, Splash!"

As It says, "splash," he/she squeezes the sponge onto that relative’s head. The person who is tagged chases after It while It runs around the circle and tries to sit down in goose’s spot in the circle before goose does. Whomever is left standing is It for the next round and play continues.

Water Baseball

Use a regular baseball bat, toy splash bat or plain sturdy stick for the bat. Find a soakable water ball or small beach ball to substitute for a baseball. Then play a simple little game of baseball. Well… except for the water substitutions, of course. Stand in a child’s wading pool at first base, turn a bucket upside down and sit on a wet sponge at second base, pop a water balloon on your head at third base and slide to home plate with the help of a slippery, wet slip-n-slide . Improvise and make up your own rules as needed!

Run Through the Sprinkler

Okay, this isn’t really a game and it certainly isn’t new, but it’s great family entertainment – for the little kids doing the running and for the relatives watching. Encourage the kids to run, jump, skip and dance through the sprinkler "rain." They could even play a game of freeze tag.

Water Hurdle

Have one person spray water from a hose a few inches or feet from the ground. Take turns jumping over the streaming water, trying not to touch it.

Party at the Pool

If your family reunion has access to or will be near a swimming pool, plan a kids pool party.

You could plan it before the family reunion as part of the reunion activities. OR, you could wait until everyone has arrived at the reunion and then let the kids plan their own pool party.

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