Ah, summer time! Everyone loves it. With so many days spent in the water, at barbecues, and the ballpark there is something for everyone to enjoy. But what do you do when a pop up thunderstorm or rain shower ruins all the fantastic fun you had planned for the day? If you’re a parent like me, you have to have a back-up plan to cure those rainy day blues. And a veteran parent also knows that every back-up needs a tertiary fall back. The next time the fun is called on account of rain head to the closet and pull out a board game or two. Chances are the rain will soon be forgotten. Here is a list of some of my family’s all-time favorite rainy day games:
Almost everyone, young and old alike, knows this game. It’s the classic detective game that lets everyone in on the action. My family and I have played this in teams of 2 and as individual players. If you have younger children, there is even a version for junior detectives. It’s always best to keep both in the house in my opinion, that way everyone can play.
Monopoly is also a classic and it is my family’s go to game for those days when the rain just doesn’t seem to stop. Parker Brothers is quite the marketing mastermind too because there are versions of this game that will appeal to everyone in the family. The idea of the game is fairly easy to grasp and is great for teaching kids about money (but don’t tell them that or they won’t want to play). Due to the large assortment to choose from there is a Monopoly game out there for every age level. My family and I just condensed our rather large collection to our three favorites: Littlest Pet Shop, Pirates of the Caribbean, and the Original. I doubt it’ll stay this way though as there are several more I have had my eye on for a while, but don’t tell my husband.
3. My kids absolutely love this game. Their favorite part is making up the “I’m Sorry dance”. In this game the object is to locate the pictures of the boards as fast as you can. There are three different game plays to choose from by rolling a dice. In one, the idea is to find it first and find it fast. Everyone plays and the one who finds the picture first keeps the card. There is one small catch though: if you yell Pictureka! and you are mistaken you must perform the agreed “I’m Sorry dance” in front of the other players. There are two versions of this game that I know of right off hand; the original and a Disney version. My family and I prefer the Disney version because the kids are more familiar with the characters in the films than some common everyday objects included in the original.
4. This board game is also widely popular and has been around for years. Again, as with all the others mentioned there is a junior version and an original version. This game also has several licensed character versions as well, including Spongebob Squarepants. My sisters and I used to play this game quite a bit as little girls and it has been a staple in my house because of this. There is not much to this game really making it simple and easy to grasp. It’s fun for all ages, but if you want to keep it even more simple and engaging for young kids it’s best to stick with the junior version.
5. This game is best played by older children and adults, but it is still a go to game for my family. My youngest is three and so she just helps mommy or daddy play. This is an excellent game for teaching children strategy as that’s what it’s all about. You start the game with certain territories based on a real map and then you place your armies in differing numbers on these territories to ensure your success. Then on your turn you pick another player and each of you roll a singular die and the one with the highest number wins. You can either choose to attack again, move on to someone else, or end your turn. It’s a little complicated and more drawn out so it works best for those endless summer storms that just won’t quit. It’s well worth the time and effort though, trust me.
6. There are only two versions of this amazing game that I have seen so far. There is the Disney one shown above and a Star Wars one. This game is manufactured by the Walt Disney company and is a trivia game similar to that of Trivial Pursuit. The difference is that this game includes questions every member of the family can answer. Even my three-year-old gets in on this one. If you’ve ever seen a Disney movie, animated or live action, then there’s a pretty good chance this game will rock your socks. There are different questions to answer on every card which go according to the spaces on the board. It’s a little complicated to explain because there is just so much to do in this game. Don’t let that dissuade you though. Just like Risk, this one is worth the effort to learn. And once you have, it’s endless fun.
7. No list of board games is complete without mentioning Trivial Pursuit and I thought it fitting to place it here in my list after it’s Disney amalgamation. This classic board game has many different versions so there is a set of trivia questions out there which will appeal to everyone’s skill level and interests. As a child I owned a kid friendly version which I was pretty good at, if I do say so myself. My all-time favorite version though, is the Walt Disney one. It’s kind of hard to come by nowadays, but check around on EBay and I’m sure you’ll find it. If not, then I highly recommend you pick up one of the others to keep on hand. You won’t be sorry you did.
8. My parents actually found this game in a store once and bought it for me because of my fascination with all things Titanic. Again, it’s a little hard to explain (even I have to review the rules when we play), but it’s fun. You’ll just have to take my word for it though I suppose as I have been told by a few people that they don’t like it. I thought it was a pretty uncommon board game, but while doing the research for this list I actually discovered that it is easily ordered online in multiple places.
9. Who among us hasn’t played a friendly game of UNO before? *raises hand* Um, if we’re being totally honest here I am a pretty ruthless UNO player. Whether I’m playing with my kids or my sisters and I go all in or all out. When I play with my sisters we go by our own rules. We double up on cards left and right. Once my older sister even hit me with 4 draw two cards in a row. One of these days I’ll get her back. It’s only a matter of time. Of course, I suppose you could play old school rules too, but where’s the fun in that? Comment below if you want the rules my sisters and I play by.
10. No one really knows where this game originated, but I can recall many a rainy summer day playing with my grandmother and my mother. I listed this one because it’s hilarious, a tremendous amount of fun, and can be played with a simple deck or card and ordinary kitchen spoons. Actual game play is simple too. Much like musical chairs, you play with one less spoon than there are players. For example: 5 players are 4 spoons, 4 players are 3 spoons, etc. You place spoons the spoons in the center of the table. Each player is dealt 4 cards. When game play begins players immediately begin by passing a card to their left while simultaneously picking one up from the player to their right. The object of the game is to collect four of a kind. Once a player has four of kind they grab a spoon. When a spoon is grabbed by one player the other players must grab a spoon as well in order to stay in the game. The player without a spoon is out and play resumes in the same fashion until all players are eliminated. The fun starts when players become so wrapped up in grabbing cards they do not realize a spoon has been taken. It’s fast paced and hilarious!
Summer storms and rain showers can ruin a good day, but being well prepared and well equipped with a wide variety and array of board games can make the difference between cries of boredom and bouts of uncontrollable laughter. So stock up today and kiss those rainy day blues goodbye!