Host Your Own Family Olympics
The Olympics have been a time-honored global tradition since French historian and educator Pierre de Coubertin founded the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and reintroduced the world to the games in 1894 after a 1,500- year hiatus from its ancient Greek roots. Olympians like “fastest woman alive” Wilma Rudolph and famed swimmer Michael Phelps have inspired generations of athletes and spectators every two years. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the IOC made the difficult decision to postpone the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games to 2021. For the first time since World War II, our globe will not see athletes compete biennially against international foes for medals, glory, and the culmination of their life’s work. Thankfully, that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy the spirit of competition this summer. While you may not have Olympian-caliber athletes in your family, it’s the perfect year to host your own family Olympics. Set the rules, create the events, and embark on a new family tradition with these ideas. The Rules Get ready for your family’s first Olympics by determining a few rules. Decide if your athletes will compete solo or if you’d rather pair up in your fight. Next, decide how the winners will be selected. Are you playing the games for fun or will you keep track of who wins the most games for bragging rights? Ultimately, these choices lead you to the next task: deciding the games you will play.
The Games What you play depends on several factors, but there are many options for families to choose from when it comes to organizing their first Olympics. Try these games or get creative and come up with your own. ● Beach Blanket Volleyball: In this version of volleyball, you just need two beach towels and a ball. This game is designed for two teams of two players each. Each person will hold one end of a towel and volley the ball to the other team using only the towel, not their hands or wrists. The first team to reach 21 wins! Make this game even more fun by setting up a tournament. ● Laundry Basketball Relay: Leave the laundry on the floor for this game. Laundry baskets serve as hoops, and competitors are challenged with picking up a beach ball using only pool noodles and taking it across the yard to one basket. The next member in the relay picks it back up and transports it to the second basket. Whichever team does it the fastest wins! ● Paper Plate Target Shooting: For this game, you only need one handball, several paper plates, and one big tree. Draw targets or point values on the paper plates and string them at various heights. Athletes take turns tossing the ball at the targets from different distances, and whoever gets the most points wins! After a little friendly competition, enjoy your family’s own version of the closing ceremonies, honoring those who can brag all year and those who gave it their best shot.
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