Ten challenges using household items, 60 seconds, and KING-SIZED candy bars on the line- sounds like the perfect combo for your family reunion or youth activity!
Minute to Win It Games are great for family reunions and youth activities because they work for large groups, for all ages and abilities, and everyone is actively involved. The challenges are exciting and sometimes difficult to do, and really fun to watch.
Here’s how it works:
-Reserve a church building or school. You CAN do these games outside, but when the temperature rises everyone is happier with some air conditioning.
- Set up your ten challenges in ten different classrooms. Have all supplies ready for each game. Have a person running the game that is familiar with the challenge and has a timer or stopwatch (or smartphone with a stopwatch app). My kids ran the games but we also had my parents, and aunts and uncles -who didn’t want to run around doing the activities but like to visit with the participants- run the games.
- Have a basket filled with 6-12 king-sized candy bars or gum for your winning teams to choose from.
- Gather your large group together, have people select partners, and hand out the Minute to Win It Scorecards. (One scorecard for each team which consists of two people.) When giving instructions for the games I encouraged everyone to select a teammate who wasn’t from their family line. For example, my nephew Scott, who is from Grandpa Neal should have a partner who is from Uncle Craig’s or Uncle Paul’s family. After all, this IS a family reunion and we should branch out a little! And it’s good to mix ages too. (I encouraged them to mix, but I didn’t tell them that the BONUS points they saw on their scorecards would be only for the people who teamed up with someone outside of their family line.)
-Most of the challenges are done by one member of the team. They can take turns competing in each challenge – 5 each. Your teammate will cheer you on!
- It takes about an hour to go around to the different events. This is how the scoring works: Each team gets 1 point just for participating in the challenge. If your team can complete the task in 60 seconds you get 3 points (so it’s either 3 points or 1 point for each event). When finished with all the challenges, ask them to add up their total. They get 5 extra bonus points if they selected a teammate outside their family line. (If you’re wanting to encourage mixing in a youth group, you could encourage and then give bonus points for anyone who teams with someone who’s in a different age group.) Turn the scorecards into the game director. Hand out candy bars to the top 3 high scoring teams!
It’s game time, so here we go—
Challenge: To balance 12 sugar cubes on a Popsicle stick held in your mouth for 3 seconds, before the 60 second timer goes off.
Supplies needed: a box of sugar cubes, a bowl, lots of Popsicle sticks, a timer and a small table.
1. Put 12 sugar cubes in a bowl on a small table.
2. Give the player a Popsicle stick to hold in their mouth.
3. Set the timer for 60 seconds.
4. The player grabs sugar cubes from the bowl and stacks them on their Popsicle stick. The 12 sugar cubes must stay on the stick for 3 seconds. If they fall down, the other teammate can put the fallen sugar cubes back in the bowl, where the player can get them and try stacking again.
**If sugar cubes fall and a part of them breaks off replace them between games, so they will stack well.
Challenge: A two-man team (each using only one hand) must keep three balloons in the air for 60 seconds without letting them hit the ground.
Supplies needed: 3 inflated balloons and an empty room or large area.
1. Inflate 3 ordinary balloons to normal size.
2. Set a timer for 60 seconds.
3. Each team member should pick which hand he or she will be using and put the other behind his or her back. Other parts of the body can be used, but not the other arm/hand.
4. Survive 60 seconds keeping the balloons up while staying in bounds until the timer sounds, and you’ve completed the task!
Challenge: One member of your team must use their facial muscles to move a cookie from their forehead to their mouth without using their hands in 60 seconds.
Supplies needed: One cookie per each team ( I just grabbed 2 bags of Chips Ahoy)
1. One team member sits in a chair. Lean your head back and place a cookie in the center of the forehead, not touching the eyebrows.
2. Set a timer for 60 seconds.
3. Use only your face to move the cookie from your forehead to your mouth. The cookie must remain in contact with your face, so you can’t try to toss it from your forehead and catch it in your mouth.
4. If the cookie falls before reaching your mouth, you must start over with the cookie on your forehead.
5. The cookie must actually go in your mouth, held securely by your lips and/or teeth, within 60 seconds to count.
TEAR IT UP
Challenge: To break the toilet paper by shooting rubber bands at it, within 60 seconds.
Supplies needed: a timer, a table for the participants to stand behind, a dowel or long stick, a roll of toilet paper, an empty soda pop can, and a package of rubber bands.
1. Put the table at the front of the room, where the participants will stand behind it. Put the rubber bands on the table.
2. Tie an empty soda pop can to the end of the toilet paper. (**Very important to make this game work.)
3. Have two people hold each end of the dowel that has the toilet paper roll on it. (Across the room – maybe 8-10 feet away from the table. Experiment – you want the challenge to be difficult, but not impossible)
4. Set the timer.
5. Shoot away! You are successful if you can break the toilet paper before the time is up.
Challenge: Bounce pencils (so that they bounce on their eraser end) so they flip and land in a cup or mug.
Supplies needed: lots of unsharpened pencils, 4 cups or mugs – you’ll want them heavy enough that they won’t topple over when hit with a flying pencil, a long table and a timer.
1. Put the 4 cups/mugs clustered together out on the table.
2. Set the timer.
3. Only one pencil can be thrown at a time and must bounce off the table and then flip into the cup where it must stay. If it bounces in and out it doesn’t count.
4. In order to win, you have to have at least one pencil in each of the 4 cups, all within 60 seconds.
ON THE NOSE
Challenge: To move 5 cotton balls with your nose 8-10 feet across the room into a bowl, without using your hands.
Supplies needed: lots of cotton balls, petroleum jelly with a spoon to dispense it, 2 small tables, a paper plate, a bowl and a timer.
1. Put 5 cotton balls on a paper plate on a small table.
2. Ten feet away put the bowl on another small table.
3. The participant generously applies Vaseline (petroleum jelly) to his/her nose.
4. Set a timer for 60 seconds.
5. The player must pick up the cotton ball with their nose and then transfer it to the bowl 8-10 feet away. If the cotton ball drops, they must go back to the plate and get another cotton ball. (You can place another one on their plate so they have access to 5 cotton balls)
6. They win if they can transfer 5 cotton balls to the bowl with their nose in 60 seconds.
Challenge: Roll 5 marbles and get them to stick on the tape at the end of a table.
Supplies needed: lots of marbles from the dollar store, a container to hold the marbles, a long plastic table, double-sided tape, and a timer.
1. Cut a strip of double-sided tape that will run the width of the table.
2. Place the marbles in the container and place the container at the opposite end of the table from the tape.
3. One hand may touch the marbles but the other hand must be placed behind the back. The player should be standing at the end of the table where the marbles have been placed.
4. Set the timer for 60 seconds.
5. The player may start to roll the marbles, one at a time, in an attempt to get them to stick to the tape at the other end of the table. If he or she can get 5 marbles to stick on the tape (for at least 3 seconds) before the timer runs out, the game has been won.
6. If you run this game lots of times, you may want to replace the tape halfway through so the tape is still quite sticky.
Challenge: To move the green cup through the stack of 39 red cups, til the green cup is back on the bottom and held in 1 hand within the 60 second time limit.
Supplies needed: 39 red plastic cups, 1 green plastic cup
1. Set up the stack of cups so that there’s one green cup with 39 red cups stacked on top of it.
2. When the clock starts, the player may grab a single cup from the top of the stack and place it on the bottom of the stack.
3. Player must use one hand to grab each cup, and must alternate hands with each cup.
4. Player must play the game from a standing position.
5. To complete the game, the green cup must be placed on the bottom after traveling through the stack and the stack must be held in one hand at the green cup within the 60 second time limit.
Challenge: To assemble a puzzle made from the front of a cereal box, which has been cut into 16 equal squares.
Supplies needed: a timer, table, cereal box, and scissors.
1. Measure and cut the front part of a cereal box into 16 equal squares. Stack the squares randomly into a single pile, with picture sides facing down.
2. Start the timer.
3. One participant has 60 seconds to turn over the pieces and reassemble the box cover.
4. If a piece of a puzzle falls to the floor, you must pick it up before continuing on with the puzzle.
5. The final puzzle must be on the table.
SUCK IT UP
Challenge: One player must use only a straw in the mouth to suck up an M&M and transfer it to the straw of their teammate. That teammate must then balance the M&M on top of 8 other straws secured in holes in a shoebox. Each straw (8 of them)
on the box must have an M&M balanced on top of it to win.
Supplies needed: a timer, a table, a large bag of M&Ms, lots of straws, and a shoe box having 8 holes with straws placed in the holes.
1. Using a pair of scissors make eight small holes in the top of a shoebox. Put a straw in each hole. Push them down into the box a little so they won’t tip over.
2. Put 8 M&Ms on the table in front of the two teammates.
3. Set the timer.
4. Give each teammate a straw.
5. See challenge description above so you know how to play the game. All 8 candies must be balancing on the 8 straws with 60 seconds.
There you go — lots of activity — lots of fun!! You can download and print the scorecard, pictured below, here.