All Youth

Balloonz

Everyone splits into two teams. Everyone has a balloon around his or her ankle that contains a word out of a Bible verse. At the count to three, everyone tries to pop their opponents balloon and the first team that manages to piece together the Bible verse wins.

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Balls In, Who’s Out?

Requires: Kickballs/dodgeballs (number should depend on the number of kids in the group) and cones.

This game should be played in a BIG, open field. Here’s how you play:

There’s a big circle of cones in the middle of the field. In the center of the cones are a big pile of kickballs. Players will start outside of the cones.

The object of the game, once the whistle is blown or someone says “Go”, is to run inside the circle, grab a ball from the center & run to the safe zone (which is the outside of the cone circle.

But here’s the catch: there will always be 2 or 3 balls less per players. For example, if there are 20 kids playing, there will only be 17 or 18 balls in the center, which means that 2 or 3 kids will be eliminated. It’s kinda like musical chairs, where so many people get eliminated each round.

The game keeps going until you’re down to the last player or players (if you’re playing in teams.)

Rules:
-No physical contact is allowed, meaning if someone tackles, punch, kick or grabs another player, that person is disqualified.
-If a player runs into the circle before the whistle is blown, then he/she is disqualified
-You are allowed to steal a ball from another player, just as long as there’s no physical contact involved.

Number of players:
This game can be played one of two ways:
1.) Teams (split in two)
2.) Every Man/Woman for themselves

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Banana Bluff

Ask for three volunteers and place a peeled banana in front of each one. Blindfold each player, making sure to blindfold the middle player last. After the middle player is blindfolded, QUIETLY remove the blindfolds from the other two players while casually explaining the rules (keep hands behind back, eat banana without using hands). Try to keep other youth standing around from revealing the secret. After saying, “Go!”, cheer on all three players as if they were all playing. The look on the middle player’s face is usually priceless when they remove their blindfold and find the other two bananas uneaten.

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Banana Scavenger Hunt

I have been doing this event anually for seven years now and it keeps getting bigger so I guess the kids like it. The youth are broken up into teams of 4 – 5 kids and they are are given sheets with riddles and a banana. They have an hour and a half to solve the riddles which tell them what they need to measure with the bananas. Points are given if they have the right thing and the right measurement but mostly for the right thing.

Set up is also quite fun too. I use it as an opportunity for a one on one meeting with one of the kids. We go out to the mall, luckily I live in Edmonton with the World’s Largest Mall where there is no shortage of stuff to use. I use some obvious stuff some hard stuff and some fun stuff (one year I had them measure a urinal, I made sure each team had a couple of boys in it). You can choose anywhere that there is a lot of stuff you can use. Even a neighborhood, train station or whatever.

My chosen assistant and I go and find stuff and measure them with a tape measure, an infared tape measrure works really well if you have one. Then we chose a theme for the riddles to follow. I.E. a scatter brained tourist trying to remember his trip to the mall and can’t figure out what he saw but he discribes it in a weird way. Then we do the riddles usually about 15-18 will give about an hour and a half challenge dpending on how big your area is and how hard your clues are.

I buy the bananas a few days ahead of time to make sure they get nice and ripe. And so you can measure them and convert your answers to bananas. We give bonus points to the groups that eat the banana after but I should say drink it because they turn liquidy after all the abuse.

During the event me and the assistant hang out and walk around the whole hunt and sell clues to people and also buy prizes for the top three teams.

The groups have to be back at the meeting point on time or the get docked points for each minute late. Then we go to a restaurant for snacks – make reservations ahead of time. During which my assistant and I score the teams and then announce the winners and hand out the prizes.

E-mail me using the email address above and I can send you some samples of what we have done in the past.

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Banana Split Social

Schedule an evening for a Banana Split Social. Have each of the teens sign up to bring things. If everything isn’t signed out, pass sign up sheets around to the adults in the church. Everyone is usually willing to help out the teens. Set a price of “donation only” so nobody feels obligated to pay but maybe somebody else may pay more than you would have charged. Talk to a Dairy Queen or TCBY to donate banana split containers. Have a few kinds of ice cream (vanilla and chocolate). Include toppings like choc. syrup, caramel syrup, whipped cream, chopped pineapple, strawberries, candied sprinkles, chopped nuts, etc. Have the teens serve the adults and have fun making banana splits. See who makes the most unusual ones!

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Bananarama

Basically, you send a bunch of people out in cars armed with Bananas. You then proceed to have them measure signs, streets, people, places, buildings and whatever else you can think of in banana lengths. The first team to return with the most correct answers wins!

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Bananarama I & II – Addition

We played the Bananarama games for our youth and they worked out great- we got a lot of positive feedback- the kids went nuts!

A couple things we did different was we had a few leaders in a car go out and give each team a challenge. If the team completed the challenge, they kept all their bananas. If they did not, they lost three bananas.
There’s a lot of banana-related challenges to be thought up, so I’ll leave it to you.

Also, before hand we told the youth not to be too abusive to their bananas, which allowed us to have banana splits after the game. (and after washing them of course).

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Banarama II

We played the Bananarama game listed on this website. However, what we did was divide the youth group kids into “teams”. You need to have a volunteer driver for each team. The driver is responsible for the safety of their team and also to return the team back to “home” on time.

The teams are given a time limit. I tried 45 minutes and it was not nearly enough. I would suggest allowing 1-1/2 hours for this game…

I went ahead (earlier that day) to different restaurants, stores, etc., and asked permission to do the game at their establishment. Everyone was so willing to accommodate us and really enjoyed being included in the game! Things we “measured” by banana length are as follows:

The length and width of the patio outside a hamburger restaurant, the distance around a rack of clothes in a department store, the length of a sidewalk along a very well-traveled main street (too funny, all on hands and knees!), signs in parking lots, mailboxes, and the best one of all….. I went to the fire department and asked to measure all around the longest fire truck they had. Oh, they LOVED it!

At the end of the game, the team with the highest number of correct answers wins.

Enjoy!

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Band Practice Room

On a certain day in the week (maybe Saturday afternoons) open up your youth room as a free band practice room for Christian and non-Christian bands (use your common sense here as to what you think is acceptable in a Church). We have our own PA equipment that we let the young people use and we let some of them use our amps, mics and drums etc. Have some of your Christian young people around to serve and to love the young people that have come in – set up the sound for them, give them drinks, print out songs for them. This has proved very successful in our youth group and has already built links with many non-Christian young people and served as a way to share the Gospel with them!

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Bank Building

As a great craft idea and a fun and interesting fundraiser, building a bank with your youth is an awesome idea!! You always see those coin banks in stores that go in an interesting track, or the gumball machines were the gumball goes down a spiral, so why not make one? Take paper towel and toilet paper tubes (empty, of course), and cut them up to make a track that coins of all sizes will fit down. Attach it to a jar of some sorts and put it somewhere that gets a lot of traffic. This activity is a great group project, a great time-consumer and a fun way for all ages to donate their spare change!

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