It’s warming up across the country and you’ve realized that every inflatable “pool” in America is sold out… And while that momentarily felt like a great way to entertain your kids, don’t worry – it would have ruined your grass! With many people not sure what their summer will entail, we put our heads together and came up with some backyard game ideas for little – and grown – kids of all ages! 

Check out our ideas below and feel free to add others in the comments. 

Younger Kids – Some fun in the sun for the little ones: 

  • Swurfer: A modern take on a swing and the land option of a surfboard, the Swurfer is a fun toy that will entertain for hours. It can be treated like a traditional swing or kids can stand and sway side to side like their surfing. Hang it from a tree in your yard and let ‘em rip! The Swurfer website is sold out of the traditional swing option but does have some great baby swings, rattan porch swings, and spider riders. Amazon has some in stock! User tip: the tree straps are super helpful to keep the swing from tilting. 
  • Ninja Warrior Course: If you haven’t tuned into Ninja Warrior on TV,  grab some ice cream, park it on your couch and watch the super human strength of these athletes. Don’t feel guilty about your ice cream, it’s #quarantinelife. Inspire the kiddos to get active with their own Ninja Warrior course that they can conquer solo now and with friends in the future. It’s a great way to wear them out during the day so they’ll go to bed before the sun goes down (maybe). 
  • Zip Line: If you have space in your yard, a zip line can be a great daredevil source of entertainment! We love Zip Line Gear for their extremely attentive customer service. They facilitate a call to help you set up your zip line and you can borrow the tools for the install and then return for a refund – super helpful if you are the DIY type! 
  • Rock Wall: Take your yard to new heights with a rock wall! Mount the climbing holds to existing playground equipment or even a large tree (mount with straps) and let your kids pretend to be a mini Alex Honnold. Build strength, confidence and have fun while doing it! 

All Kids – We didn’t forget about the high school and college kids… and the occasional 20-something who is #stayathome with mom and dad: 

  • Backyard Movie Theater: There are many ways to create a backyard movie theater, but we love the concept of using a classic projector. You can get as inventive and technical as you like with the screen, but a simple white sheet firmly attached to the side of your house can do the trick. Pull out the lawn chairs, comfy pillows, some citronella candles, speakers  — top it off with some popcorn and you’re all set! \
  • Hook & Ring Game: It’s so simple… but we can guarantee your kids will be hooked. The hook and ring game involves delicately swinging a ring with the goal of hooking it. Yep – that’s it, but there is something soothingly addictive about it. DIY by screwing a large hook into a tree and using any sort of a ring from the hardware store. Or you can order a set online and install. 
  • Bocce Ball Court: The Italians know a good thing when they see one – pasta, wine, pasta, wine… and bocce ball! Tilly recently spoke with popular lifestyle site, The Manual, about how to install a Bocce Bar in your yard this summer. This is a guaranteed fun family activity, paired perfectly with some cheese and wine at happy hour. 
  • Fire Pit: It seems that 2020 may be the year of the firepit… Or at least that may be what we chose to remember about this bizarre year. SO many Tilly clients are requesting a special fire pit nook for their yard. A fire pit can be a complex built in feature with a gas line or you can purchase a portable one up at your local hardware store or online. No matter your set up, there’s something reminiscent of simpler days when you are huddled around a fire. Late nights, s’mores, a drink, chatter – whether you are spending time with a little one or a kid home for the summer, everyone will be happy! 

What are you doing in your yard to keep your family active and busy this summer?

We have found the Tilly process to be most successful on properties less than an acre.

A major part of remote design is understanding a property’s existing conditions and limitations. To do this we generally use the primary structure (usually the house) as the main point of reference. The greater distances are from from the house the less successful we are at understanding your property. No matter what the size of your property, the more information you can provide us, the better. Don’t be shy with the pictures! And please send along any and all architectural or property plan documents you can.

Still have questions? Contact us!