Camp Stuff Week Day 4: Games

Below are a few games that are camp favorites as well as some good game idea websites.

Greased Watermelon Football
Football with a greased watermelon in shallow water.

Materials: Swimming area, watermelon, Crisco, two baskets

How To Play:
Take a watermelon and put Crisco on it until it is nice and slippery. In about 4 feet of water, place two buckets 100 feet apart or so. Weight the buckets to the bottom with rocks.

Divide the players into two equal teams. The goal of the game is to get the watermelon into the opposing team’s bucket. Players try to grab it and move through the water with it while other players try to tackle them/rip the watermelon away. The team that scores the most points in the given time period wins.

It can be helpful to have an extra watermelon (or 2 or 3) just in case it breaks.

Some helpful rules are:

  • No biting/scratching/kicking
  • No going in less than 3 feet of water (watermelon can break easier when out of water)


Kiddie Pool Kickball

Materials and Setup:

  • We used 2 boxes of plastic sheeting 6mil 6’X100′ from Home Depot that we bought online for 33 bucks a box.
  • Roll out 50′ and fold under pool.
  • You never have to cut anything because the pool filled with water weighs it down.
  • Pull it tight as you fill the pools and it won’t go anywhere.
  • Repeat to each base.
  • We use the cheap bouncy balls you always see stacked high at a Walmart or Target.
  • Make sure to use tear free soap.
  • Use a little league baseball field instead of a lawn if you don’t have enough yard.

How to Play:

  • 3-5 innings
  • 3 outs per inning.
  • Students in the field can have pool noodles to beat the runners as they round the bases.
  • To be safe on base you must sit down in pool.
  • Can’t run from base until ball is kicked, must slide into home for the run to count.
  • No bunting.
  • Best scenario is 15 to 20 on each team.
  • You will need to continually fill pools during the game.

Important: Lots of slipping and falling involved. Please play safe and at your own risk.
Credits: This video was originally created by Andrew Martin Kolstee for EPIC Student Life a youth ministry in Russell, Pennsylvania and then edited by REMIX Ministries.

Tic Tac Toe Relay Race

Materials: 9 Hula Hoops; 5 bean bags/t-shirts/other objects of one color; 5 bean bags/t-shirts/other objects of a different color

How to Play: See Video

Water Balloon Capture the Flag

Materials: Tons of water balloons; 2 flags (can be bandanas or other); field lining paint; buckets, trash cans; or large coolers 1/4 filled with water to put the balloons into; flag football flags (optional); garbage can lids or the like for shields (optional); referee shirts; whistles; garbage bag for cleanup.

Setup: You will need lots of time to fill up enough water balloons. One idea it to send each student home with a pack of water balloons to fill up and bring to the game with them. You will need to create a mid-field line and end lines using field liner, a long rope, or similar.

How to Play: 
Divide into 2 teams. Put a bandana or similar behind each endline. Teams are defending the flag as in Capture the Flag. Each team has some players playing offense and some playing defense. Offensive players are trying to score by running into enemy territory, grabbing the flag and returning to their territory with it. These players are safe when they cross the endline of enemy territory or when they are in their own territory. If using flag football flags, when a player takes a direct hit (not splash) one flag is removed. When they are hit a second time, their second flag is removed. Once both flags have been removed, they are no longer allowed to cross into enemy territory, and must stay on their side and play defense. Repeat game as many times are desired. Referees will have to determine “fresh” hits for ensuing games.


Websites for Great Game Resources





Let’s Go Claudia!

Yesterday we deopped Claudia off for her weekend of competing for Miss Teen New York! We are very proud of our daughter who is so beautiful inside and out.  


Family Paint Night with Nana and Pappy

Tonight we had a family paint night with my Mom and Dad. Each person did their own painting. Super fun!

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Basketball Trick Shots

Had some fun on Saturday shooting some trick shots. Dropped these ones within about 3 minutes. Fun! Thanks to Rebekah Tanas for capturing them on video.

4 Corner Dodgeball with a Twist

About a year ago my daughter Natalia, who was in 8th grade, introduced me to 4 Corner Dodgeball, which she had learned at school. Since then, we simply cannot play regular dodgeball if we have more than 20 students. The idea is simple. You have 4 teams, each in a quadrant, and they are all against each other. Having to defend balls being thrown, not just from in front of you, but also from your sides, adds incredible excitement to the game. Then, recently, I decided to try a twist. In the middle of the game, I yelled, “Rotate!” and teams had to move over to the quadrant to their left. Everyone started running to their new area, all while trying to avoid being hit while switching. The insanity of people moving while still playing was awesome! The students loved it and it kept them on their toes and the game exciting.

Family Paint Night

Tonight we did our first-ever Family Paint Night! It was super fun and awesome to see how each person expressed their creativity in a unique way.FullSizeRender FullSizeRender 2 FullSizeRender 4 FullSizeRender 5 FullSizeRender 3

Family Staycation

One of the unique challenges many youth pastors face is finding time for family vacation. The reason it is difficult is because the times when students are out of school are usually prime times to do things with them that you can’t do when school is in session. When everyone else is able to take vacation, we are running events, taking kids to camp, on missions trips, etc. When the youth pastor has school-aged children of his/her own, as soon as the breaks are over and they’re ready for a vacation, they can’t go because their kids have school. Such was the case for me this summer. While our family is planning some special vacations this year (it’s our eldest daughter’s last year of high school), we simply couldn’t get much time away together this summer. But yesterday we did take a day off to head into New York City for a mini staycation. We went on a nice brunch cruise around the city, visited the new One World Trade Center (Freedom Tower) Observatory, 102 floors up on the tallest building in the western hemisphere, and had dinner and a nice time on Penn Plaza. Today was the last day of chill before the girls go back to school tomorrow, so tonight we had a nice family dinner at one of our favorite restaurants, Buona Sera in Smithtown. It’s hard to believe tomorrow is Natalia’s first day of high school, and Claudia’s last first day of high school.

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Family on TV … You’re Welcome Mets Fans!

A couple of weeks ago our family went to the Mets game. Although we’re Yankees fans, we always enjoy going to baseball games, especially when we get free tickets. I’m also a sucker for free t-shirts (I am a youth pastor, after all!), and it was t-shirt night. It was a tough battle that went into extra innings. During the bottom of the 12th inning the Mets finally show us Yankees fans on TV (:07-:10 in video), and wouldn’t you know it … 2 pitches later, Flores hits a walk-off home run to end the game. It was a very exciting finish, and it was fun to be there. Our Mets fan friends call us good luck charms. You’re welcome! lol!

Epic Anniversary Date

Monday Adriana and I celebrated our 19th anniversary. We had lunch at Red Lobster in Times Square then visited The Hunger Games Exhibition, which was a really neat behind-the-scenes look at how the story was developed and filmed, and also included many of the costumes from the movie sets. In the evening we had the privilege of going to the very exclusive The Rainbow Room on the 65h floor of Rockefeller Center, thanks to the generosity of a friend. We very much enjoyed listening to Max Weinberg (longtime drummer for Bruce Springstein and the E Street Band, and former band leader on Late Night with Conan O’Brien) and his orchestra. He was kind enough to come over and chat with us a bit and wished us a Happy Anniversary. What a very nice gentleman. IMG_6334IMG_6204IMG_6230IMG_6285IMG_6289IMG_6313IMG_6318 IMG_6329IMG_6340IMG_8706