In December of 2016, I was turning 30 years old and I wanted to do something extra fun and special, include the people I love, as well as my obsession with all things Christmas. That year will forever be the founding year of the “Showers Family Olympics.” (named after my maiden name “Showers” and that side of the family)
I am a sucker for a party with a theme so we had everyone dress up with their immediate family in a Christmas theme of choice and come up with a team name. Preston and I were reindeer and our team name was the “Jingle Ballers.”
The foundation of the Showers Family Olympics is to pit each team against each other in an all out competitive brawl in order to win bragging rights and the ownership of the golden feather trophy for the next full year. There are of course lots of cocktails and peeing pants in laughter as well. In the end, the family with the lowest point value has to display (in a prominent location) a jar of desert sand in their home for the year. Showing what Olympic sized losers they are. You know…true Christmas spirit.
Each year we have mixed up what games we play, but here are the basics of the Olympics in case you would like to incorporate this event into your family traditions!
*You may need to adjust for how many teams you have or if you are incorporating the kids in the games. Our kids have been too young so far, but we definitely plan on expanding the Olympics once they are old enough.
How to Play:
(3-5 games total) – It can take a surprising amount of time, so don’t overwhelm yourself
2-4 Games of team vs team
1 Game where all teams participate at once
Each family team plays every other family team in ALL the team vs team games… in a rotating system.
Winner stays at the game, loser moves on to the next game.
You get 1 point for each game that you win.
End with the game that includes all teams
If there is a tie, have a tie-breaker game on hand.
Family Olympic Games:
Team vs Team
Lawn sized Jenga
Lawn sized dice game. We played “Ship, Captain, Crew”
Sequence board game
Left, Right, Center
Saran-Wrap Ball Game (family favorite) : We usually fill it with things like candy, scratchers, mini liquor bottles, silly gag toys and end with a dollar bill in the center. We mix in poker chips throughout the prizes and whatever team has the most tokens when the ball wrap runs out wins the point for their team.
Horse Race Card Game – We modified this game from a drinking game, to winning suit/team wins the game. Each team represented by a different suit. This is great because you can have two tie breakers going at once, the winner and the loser trophies (this happened that first year)
We tend to hold our Olympics around the holidays each year, because that’s when people expect to be free for family events and it makes it easier on everyone’s schedules. Plus, an excuse to wear an ugly Christmas sweater is always a bonus (2017 theme year).
However you decide to configure your Olympics, I can guarantee it will be a lot of fun, laughs, competitive riffs and great memories!