Adult barbecue party games

Getty Thinkstock

The sun is shining, the meat is sizzling, and the beers are flowing, but there’s one crucial thing that’s missing from this barbecue; the entertainment. Once all your guests have happily stuffed their faces full of barbecue food, it’s up to you as the host to keep the party alive.

After all, it’s the summertime, you’re surrounded by your nearest and dearest and you may as well let your hair down and have some fun, which is where these wonderful barbecue party games come into play.

Water balloon fight

Think water balloons are just for kids? Think again. Water balloons are the fun staple of many summertime shindigs, barbecues included. After you’ve cleared the food away and rid your back garden of any expensive goods, it’s time to throw like a pro. Pre-fill all of your water balloons and give everyone and equal number to ensure it’s a fair fight. Now you have to decide between going free-for-all and splitting off into your own teams. If a full blown fight seems like it’ll take too much effort, then you can play a very entertaining variation of hot potato with water balloons too. Whatever path you choose, make sure you’re prepared to get a little wet and laugh uncontrollably.

Hula dancing

Have a Hawaiian or beach theme for your barbecue? Then bring out the hula hoops to add a fun and authentic feel to the whole affair. Hula dancing can be great fun on its own, especially after an alcoholic beverage or two. However, you can easily turn dancing into a game by adding a competitive edge. Pitch men versus girls, couples against other couples, or simply everybody against each other and see who can dance for the longest without dropping their hula hoop.

Potato sack race

Cast your mind back to sports day at primary school. Remember hopping frantically in that potato sack trying to beat your friends to the finish line? Well, guess what? You can have just as much fun now as you did back then. If you can’t find any potato sacks then using old pillowcases or sturdy rubbish bags work just as well. Simply ensure there are enough sacks to go around, agree on where your finish line is going to be, designate one of your friends to start you off with a countdown and judge the race, and then start hopping to your heart’s content.

Pin the tail

This is another game that can be enjoyed by both adults and kids. If you haven’t played it before, then you basically hang a cardboard cut out of a donkey (a general donkey shape will do) from a tree or something similar, making sure the donkey has a missing tail. Place some double-sided tape on the tail, blindfold one of your dear friends, hand them the donkey’s tail, and laugh at them whilst they fumble around your garden looking for the cardboard donkey. Once they find it, they have to try and stick the tail in the right place on the cardboard donkey. The person closest wins. Be warned that after a few alcoholic drinks your blindfolded friends may become a little too disorientated and wobbly, so clear the area of any potential hazards first.


The horseshoes game takes you way back to the Wild West, where cowboys would pass their days tossing horseshoes around. The aim of this game is simple. You set a post at a certain distance and then each of you take turns to throw horseshoes, trying to land them around the post. You can buy the items you need for this game from any good toy store and in most supermarkets. However, you can easily make your own with a wooden stick and a few plastic rings. To make the game even more interesting, have a few posts at different distances and assign different points to each. At the end of the game, the person with the most points wins. It’s a simple game that provides a great deal of entertainment. Now, what are you waiting for? Get out there, fire up the barbecue, and have some fun.