Every four years the sport-crazed Australian population become sleep-deprived tv-addicts thanks to the Olympics games. Suddenly every second person is an expert on a sport you've never heard of, and people everywhere have formed incredibly strong opinions about strategy, technique, scoring and outfits. For instance, every four years without fail, my dad will indicate to all who will listen, that the amount of splash produced by a diver is directly attributable to the score card. Perhaps he is right.
There is something liberating about the world coming to play games for 10 days or so. And so, in my quest to eventually provide party game ideas for every conceivable event, come my suggestions for the Olympics gathering at your place.
Have fun and party safe!
1. So you think you know the Olympics
Compile a series of questions about the Olympic games. Use these in whatever way suits your gathering as guest is pitted against guest.
Eating is a feature of any party. You can choose any numbers of angles. Perhaps all your food will be the colour of your country flag, or you might opt for ring shaped foods such as cheezels and donuts after the Olympics rings. Then again, the Olympic host has a certain culinary reparation which may be represented. Food presentation may include a winners podium, mini cocktail flags and/or stadium shaped platters.
3. Dress Code
Guests should come dressed appropriately as an olympics personality, official, athlete, media character, or in country colours or national dress. "Official" all-access lanyards may be issued on arrival.
Competitors are each given a straw and a ping pong ball. Ping pong balls are moved only by blowing them along by use of the straw. Set up a starting and finishing line over a 2 metre distance on floorboards or similar hard, smooth surface.
5. Not-The-Olympic-Torch Relay
You will need a stopwatch and as many standard torches as you can find - make sure they have plenty of battery life. Prepare the game by hiding the torches around the garden backyard, or wherever you are meeting. Divide party-goers into two teams. When the starting gun fires, competitors race (individually or in pairs) to retrieve the hidden torches which will be seen because you have left them on. The team with the greatest number of torches win the gold.
Two teams compete to separate flag colours of their designated country from a bag of multicoloured lollies. Lollies that may befit this activity include jellies beans, smarties, M&Ms. When the starting gun fires, teams have one minute to open their bag and rummage to find the correct colours which should be deposited them in an appropriate container. Ideas for containers may include sporting trophies and mini basketball hoops.
7. Medal Haul
This activity is an ongoing one throughout your gathering. As people arrive issue them with 5 gold coins (e.g.: play money or foil covered chocolates will work well) Choose a couple of choice cliched expressions that are often heard in the Olympics context. Examples include "its a dream come true" or "her mother must be so proud right now". Each time any of the chosen phrases are used in general conversation, the speaker can claim a medal from the person to which they are talking. If a person uses the phrases out of context, they must give a medal to those they are speaking to. The person with the most medals at the end of the party wins.
8. Junky Javelin
This is a activity in which teams or pairs compete to create the best new technology in javelin construction. Provide a range of materials and give competitors 3 minutes only to create a javelin. Materials may include plastic straws, toothpicks, cotton wool, tape, newspaper, polystyrene balls, pipe-cleaners etc... The team whose javelin travels the greatest distance takes out the gold medal.
9. Pin the Doping Charge on the Athlete
This is another perpetual game. To play you will need two or three ordinary household pegs. During the gathering secretly "plant" a peg on a guest to get the game started. The pegs (or pegs if yours is a large gathering) should have a note attached to it which reads: "You have taken an illegal substance. To avoid detection, secretly attach this peg to another party goer". At an appointed time the drug cheats will be exposed and a penalty of your choosing should be given.
10. Commentary Contest
Choose a three of four media clip of past olympic event. Invite one person for each clip to try their hand at commentary sight unseen. Winner decided by the acclamation of party goers.
Want more game ideas?
For games with an equine flavour see 10 Party Games for Melbourne Cup Day.
For games with a British flavour see 10 Party Games for the Royal Wedding.
Even more game compilations here.