After many months (or years!) apart, family reunions give family members a great way to reconnect and build new memories together. For adults, reconnecting and breaking the ice can be as simple as sharing a favorite family dish or reminiscing over stories from years past.
On the other hand, kids change dramatically over the course of a year, making reconnections a bit more challenging. The transition from toddlers to teens feels like it happens overnight. To avoid awkward conversations or complete boredom, kids are likely to end up scrolling through a phone or tablet to get through the day.
Games are a great way to bring everyone out of their shell and provide the ultimate ice breaker for family members of all ages. With just a little effort, everyone will have so much fun you’ll be scheduling the next family reunion before even saying goodbye!
Family Reunion Games That Are Totally Device Free! (and still super fun!)
If you’ve already planned and committed to a device-free reunion, you can still have fun with games that will involve family members of all ages. A combination of tried-and-true beloved family games along with some fun new games to keep things interesting will grab everyone’s attention and keep the fun going all day long. Save the device game list for another get-together, (seriously, that list is fun!) and use this device-free family game list to get everyone laughing and playing together at your family reunion.
Outdoor Games for your Family Reunion
If you’re looking for some fun in the sun and want something that will keep everyone engaged, then these outdoor family reunion games are just what your family needs. Here are a few of our favorite outdoor games, guaranteed not only fun but also great exercise!
Water Balloon Toss
If you’re seeking a great game for outdoor gatherings on hot days, this is the one for you. Divide players into teams of two. Team members stand opposite of each other and toss a water balloon back and forth while gradually widening the space between them. The last team with a balloon intact wins.
Paper Airplane Competition
The record flight for a paper airplane is 226 feet and 10 inches. Get out some paper and see who can create a family record. Build planes with teamwork or single engineers. Create rules or make it a free-for-all. The sky is the limit when it comes to paper airplanes.
Grab some spoons and eggs (hard-boiled or plastic) and set up a relay race of the slowest proportions. Each team member must carry their egg on a spoon from the starting point to a turnaround point and back again. Then, the egg is passed to a teammate (from spoon-to-spoon) who takes their turn.
Frisbee golf is played in a similar fashion to ball golf. However, instead of using a ball and club, a Frisbee is thrown towards a basket which serves as the hole. After the first throw, the Frisbee is thrown again from where it landed. Scoring is kept by counting the number of throws it takes to make the Frisbee land in the basket.
Indoor Games for your Family Reunion
Are you keeping the fun inside? Or perhaps rain and/or snow have shifted your plans. So what do you do then? Here are some popular indoor games that have been proven to be fun for groups of all sizes!
Divide the family into teams. Write out phrases or words on slips of paper to place in a bowl. Choose a player from each team to select a slip of paper and act out the word for his/her teammates. The teammates have one minute to guess as many words as they can. The first team to guess 10 successfully wins!
Two Truths & A Lie
A wonderful game to get to know your family a little better! Start off by giving everyone a pen and paper that way they can write down and number what they think is a lie. Assign someone that will write down each lie. For this game, you share two things about yourself that are true and one that is a lie. So you might say something like; I’m left-handed, I’ve met the Queen of England, and I have auditioned for The Voice. Family members would then guess which one of those is a lie. Once everyone gets a turn, tally up who got most of the answers right, and that is the winner!
Rummy includes a broad family of card games that involve players scoring points by “melding” their cards via Groups (Books) of three or four of a kind or Sequences (Runs) of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit. When making a sequence in basic rummy, the ace is always a low card. It may not be played above the king.
Two or more players, a 52 card deck, and one less spoon than the number of players are all you need to get this game going. Each player is dealt 4 cards. The remaining cards are placed face down in the center of the table. The dealer takes the top card and either switches it with one of their cards or places it on the table to their left. Once a card is passed left, the next player can either keep the card or pass it on. When a player gets 4 of a kind, they can grab a spoon. Other players can grab a spoon as soon as one is picked up. The player with no spoon loses the round.
Each player is dealt 8 cards. Place the rest of the deck face down in the middle of the table. The game starts when you turn over the first card in the deck.
The player to the left of the dealer (clockwise around the table) goes first. To play the person has to match the rank (same number or face card) or suit of the card turned over, or play an 8.
If a player can’t match the rank or suit and doesn’t have an 8, they have to draw a card from the deck.
If the player plays an 8 they have to declare a suit for the next player to play. That person has to follow the named suit or play another 8.
The winner is the first person to get rid of all their cards!
The winner then receives points for all the cards from the other players:
- Number cards are worth their number value
- Face cards are worth 10
- 8’s are worth 50
Here’s an example of how a hand might play:
After the 4 of hearts is played, the next player:
- Can play any other 4
- Can play any other heart
- Can play any 8 (then declares a different suit)
- Can draw a card from the deck if no other play is possible
These games are designed to go fast!
This is a great card game to play if there are a lot of young kids, so they can join in on the fun as well! This game has several variations, but one popular way to play is with 2 players that each get half of the cards (26 per player). Each player will turn over their card at the same time. Whoever has the higher number, wins and takes the other player’s card. When the players each reveal the same card, they enter into a war. They will each grab 3 cards from their deck and flip over the fourth card; whoever’s card is the highest, wins that round and gets the player’s 4 cards. Whoever has the most cards after all the cards have been played, wins.
Each player is dealt 7 cards, and the remaining cards are placed face down in a pile on the table. The first player asks another player for a specific rank of card (e.g., “do you have any 3s?”). If they do, they give them all of them, and the asking player gets another turn. If they don’t, they say “go fish” and the asking player takes a card from the stockpile. The first person to get rid of all their cards wins.
Reunion Games That Use Devices In A Creative Way!
We get it, devices are pretty hard to escape. To throw the kids a bone and give them the chance to use devices without losing their attention, here are some games that use devices in a fun, interactive way.
Hot Potato Game
Play with one device on a timer and the music of your choice! When someone is caught with the phone in hand when the timer is up, they have to do something silly like a funny dance, or snap a photo of themselves with a weird expression on their face. Winner is the last person who hasn’t been caught.
A classic! This game leaves plenty of room to get as creative as you wish. Start off by creating a list of items that must be found and assign a point value to each item. Get everyone into teams of 2 and with their phone in hand, text them the list. They can then work on finding the items on the list and snapping a photo. Set a time to meet back up and tally the points to assign a winner.
- 5 points – Piece of chocolate
- 5 points – Red lipstick
- 10 points – Someone wearing mismatched socks.
- 20 points – A teddy bear
Google Image Safari
Everyone gets to be on their phone or device of choice to participate in this one! With Google (or your favorite search engine) pulled up, go through the alphabet and for each letter, tell everyone (or teams) to search for an animal that starts with that letter. Everyone holds up their device to show the animal they picked….but the catch is you only get a point if your animal is unique (nobody else picked the same thing). Whoever has the most points at the end of the alphabet wins!
Downloadable Reunion Games You Can Play as a Group with One or More Devices
Do you find yourself constantly checking your phone when socializing? Instead of using your phone to disconnect from those around you, here are some fun downloadable games that will help you connect with your family!
Free download on Android or iOS. Also requires a Chromecast or Apple TV to put lyrics on a TV screen.
You don’t have to be a professional to sing karaoke. In fact, that’s half the fun. Instead of dealing with the cost of a karaoke rental, you can download Smule and use your device as a microphone. A selection of songs in a variety of genres is available for free with more songs available as in-app purchases.
There are several charades-like games that can be downloaded onto devices to bring the classic game to family reunions with a modern twist. Try one (or more) of these games to get every family member in on the fun.
- Heads Up
- Charades Mimics – GuessUp word Party Game
- Move It! Charades
- Reverse Charades
- Wordie: Guess the Word
Free download on Android or iOS
For a different take on trivia (and some laughs), get everyone involved in a game of Psyche. Before questions are asked, each player secretly submits a funny but plausible answer to a question. All submissions, along with the correct answer, appear on screen for players to guess which answer is the right one. You get a point when another player chooses your answer or you choose the right answer. The player with the most points wins.
Free download on Android and iOS
Solve escape room style puzzles at home with 2-4 people (or create teams for a bigger game), using downloaded missions from the website matched with the mission in the app. The app gives you a countdown clock and a fictional backstory for the missions and multiple puzzles must be completed to finish the mission.
Out of the Loop
Free download on Android and iOS, and designed to be used on one device that’s passed around to all players
A category is chosen, then a single phone is passed around to allow all players except one to see a secret word. This leaves one player “out of the loop” as players take turns asking each other silly questions about the secret word. Once the round is over, all players vote on who they think was out of the loop based on the answers provided to the questions.
Free download on Android or iOS and supports cross-platform players. All players must connect over the same Wi-Fi network.
Join family members together in a virtual life-or-death struggle as a starship bridge team racing against a timer to avoid disaster. Each device displays a different control panel and you all have to work together to follow time-sensitive instructions. Directions are coming from all directions at once, so there’s usually some yelling involved. It’s a frantic fun time for everyone involved.
When they aren’t used as an escape, devices can be a fun way to bring the family together. However, if you’re planning a device-free reunion, there are plenty of games to fall back on.
Get Game Ideas from the Family
Planning a family reunion is an exhaustive task for a single family member. Sharing the responsibilities will help you ensure the gathering suits everyone’s needs and is fun for all age groups. Unfortunately, setting up a virtual meeting can be almost as difficult as agreeing on a date for the reunion, and the busyness of social media can dwarf your plans.
Still, creating a special gathering space to plan your family reunion can help you start catching up and create an epic game list that all family members will fall in love with. Reunacy can help you organize and connect with family members to create a master game list of family favorites that will have everyone looking forward to the special day.
Plan your Reunion with Reunacy
When you’re deciding how to plan your family reunion, it’s easy to get bogged down by the sheer enormity of the task. Reunacy can help you take care of all the details in a way that involves everyone on their own schedule. Instead of dealing with details that get lost on social media or scheduling a family reunion to plan your family reunion, you can gather all the details you need in one amazing place.
It’s like a yearbook and an events app had a beautiful baby that helps you create your group, invite family members, create the event, and share ideas for the reunion. Once you create your group, you can use the event message board to share game ideas.
When it comes to family reunions, the food is great, but the fun is better. Games and laughter are where those great memories are created. Don’t leave entertainment to chance. Get your family members together on Reunacy to create an epic game list that will be on everyone’s lips until next year’s reunion.