It’s family reunion season and there’s nothing better than getting together with grandmas, grandpas, siblings, cousins, and aunts and uncles. If your family is like ours, there are always a few jitters to work out, especially if we haven’t seen each other in a while.
Here are five great bonding activities for your big ol’ family to try out at your next reunion!
5 Bonding Ideas for Your Next Family Reunion
1. Busy balloons
Divide your family into two teams. Each team sends a representative to the front where you give them an air-filled balloon (not helium). You (the announcer) will then call out a body part that each representative has to hold the balloon up with for 15 seconds (i.e. noses, elbows, knees, toes, bum). The person to hold the balloon the longest without it falling earns a point for their team. Take turns until each family member has had a chance. The team with the most points at the end wins a prize!
2. Marshmallow challenge
Marshmallows aren’t just great for roasting…they become an integral part of this fun bonding game. Divide your family into groups of 5-10. For this activity, you’ll these materials for each group:
- 20 sticks of uncooked spaghetti
- 1 yard of masking tape or painters tape
- 1 yard of string
- 1 large marshmallow
- scissors (to cut materials)
The challenge is to build the tallest freestanding structure using ONLY the items listed above, with the marshmallow on top. The structure must stand on its own for the duration of the measuring–no touching or supporting it. A judge will use a yard stick to measure each structure from the base to the top of the marshmallow, and the tallest tower wins.
3. Get to know you ball
Take a beach ball or other large plastic ball and write quite a few questions all around it. (For a list of question ideas look here and here.) Gather your family in a large circle. Throw the ball to someone and tell them to answer the question that is touching or closest to their pinky/thumb/index finger, etc. Take turns throwing the ball to everyone in the circle, answering questions and learning more about your family each time.
4. Never have I ever
To play this fun bonding game, snag a few packages of wooden skewers like the ones above. Gather your family in a circle outside. Give each person five or so roasting skewers. Start the game by saying something that you’ve never done. For example, “I’ve never used a chainsaw before.” Anyone in the circle who has used a chainsaw before has to throw a stick into the middle of the circle.
The point of the game is to end up with the most skewers still in your hand. Each person takes a turn saying something they’ve never done (I’ve never baked a pie, never read Gone with the Wind, never ran a marathon, etc.). The last person to still hold a stick in his or her hand wins. You’ll learn a ton about your family this way and this game is a great conversation starter!
5. Campfire stories and songs
One of my all time favorite bonding activities was gathering at nighttime to tell campfire stories and sing campfire songs with my family. My grandpa has passed on, but a treasured memory I’ll always hold is of him singing campfire songs with my uncles. I learned songs that way that I would have never heard otherwise.
If your family members aren’t much into singing, tell campfire stories. These can be real life stories, or made up ones. For years I thought my uncle had really wrestled a bear in the woods.
And you don’t have to have to be camping or have an actual fire to tell stories and sing. Do it wherever you happen to have your reunion. But wait till the lights go down…there’s something extra magical about moonlit stories and songs.
And for the donut idea pictured above, check out our Easy and Creative DIY Donut Display! It would be perfect for your next family reunion!
Wishing you many wonderful reunions and family bonding times. And if you have a brilliant family bonding idea, please share below!
For even more reunion helps, check out a few of our favorite ideas we have shared in the past: