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Homemade Carnival Games Ideas

Lori MacInnes

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Are you throwing a carnival party and need carnival games ideas?

Traditional carnival games are usually played at carnival booths. You usually exchange one or more tickets for a turn at a game. Examples of carnival games booths include the Duck Pond game, Hoopla, Toss the Ball, Knock the Can and of course, the Coconut Shy. If you are hosting a Carnival Party, you can hire games booths, or better still make your own. To make a simple carnival game booth, you need a small table, a cloth big enough to drape over the table (brightly colored if possible), a large piece of card and some paints or thick marker pens.

You simply drape the cloth over the table, letting it hang down the front of the table to the ground. Using your paints, or marker pens, write out a fun sign, stating the name of the game- you can be really creative here! Finally attach the sign to the cloth and there you have it- your very own homemade carnival game booth. If you really want to look authentic, buy some cheap, narrow, plastic piping (available from hardware stores), cut into lengths to make a rectangular frame for the booth (you'll need one long one, just a tiny bit longer than your table length, and two shorter ones (decide how high you wish the frame to be).

Use strong tape to bind the pieces of tubing together to form a three sided rectangle, then attach to the table, again securing with strong tape. You can hang a lightweight sign from this, but be a little careful- the frame won't tolerate too much weight. You can buy ready made games to use on your booths if you wish. However, you can make your own. Keep food cans, and rinse these out and dry off. Cover these cans with brightly colored paper and use to stack up for the Knock the Can game. Add a couple of bean bags- and your game is ready to play. To play, the guest throws the bean bags, one at a time, at the cans. If they knock all the cans over, they win. For the Coconut Shy, you will need to buy a few fresh coconuts. To make the stands for the coconuts, use empty soda bottles that have been rinsed out and dried. Cut the tops off the bottles and cover them with brightly colored paper. Place the bottles on the top of the table booth, spaced well apart, and put the coconuts on top of the bottles. Have three small balls, or bean bags, per turn, and you are ready to play.

To play, the party guest tosses the bean bags, or balls, one at time, at the coconuts. If they knock one off, they win. Toss the Ball is an easy game to make. Cover a waste paper basket with brightly colored paper, place it at the back of the booth, or on the ground. Place a marker a fair distance away from the basket. This is where the party guests will stand to take their turns. Use any ball you like- for example a basketball or a baseball- it must fit into the target waste paper basket. To take a turn, the guest stands on the marker and throws the ball. If it goes into the basket and stays there, they win. You have two main options for prizes. Either give your guests tickets when they win a game, which they exchange for a prize at the end. Or, give a small prize at the booth to each winner. Have fun!

About the Author
Lori has been planning events and parties for over 15 years. She's organised and hosted everything from high profile celebratory events with over 400 guests, to home based family parties for her three children. Need more great Carnival Party ideas, then check out Carnival Birthday Party ideas , and for party ideas for all occasions take a look at


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