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MAYPOSPANKY SparkPoints: (0)
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9/13/12 1:20 P

Okay, something different that will not only keep your kids busy, but will attract every kid in the camp ground.

Playaboule Glo Boules - Lighted Bocce Ball and Petanque - I don't know what the budget is, but we payed $49 for our set from Walmart before last summer.

We have had a fire ban here in Colorado so there is little to no activity around the camp fires after dusk. The kids were totally bummed that there was nothing to do after dark other than just go to bed. We figured out a way to completely distract them.

I don't even know if any percentage of the kids even understand the concept of the game, but they just chase around the glowing balls for hours of fun. We always have to break up the party to get to bed at a somewhat reasonbale time. On the average camp out, we will see 4 or 8 other kids appear to join our 4, 7 and 9 year old.

To add to the fun and give yourself some added security while they are running around in the dark, spring for some glow sticks (breakable 1 shot for about $1 or you can get battery powered for a few more bucks) to hand around their necks or bracelet type. Get different colors and you can track that it is your kid that is running around the camp site in the dark. In addition to your piece of mind, it gives the kids confidence in the dark and just enough light to keep from running into things. I think they also can identify each other pretty quickly by color. It is also a great night light to go to bed with.

A couple of hints - try to keep them away from the tents as there are usually ropes that they trip over if they get too close. And best to try to get them to an open area without too many things to run into. I can't stress how well the glow sticks work.

Have fun and keep camping - we are getting a load of milage family bonding!!!!!!!!

SNOWKAT Posts: 380
9/13/12 8:10 A

Horseshoes or beanbag toss - this is good for after dinner/before bed and can be done by camplight.

Jump rope

carving - pick up softwood at a craft store and relatively dull pocket knives

frisbee / catch


card and board games

lego building


9/12/12 7:50 A

as long as there is water, mine are good to go

9/11/12 3:37 P

I camp a lot with my sons (7yo twins). Our rule is no electronics. We play card games together if we are in camp, but mostly we go hiking, bird/bug watching. They also know I'm not there to entertain them, and they go off and make adventure courses, rig up bow & arrows out of sticks and string. They skip rocks if we are around water. They climb trees.
We picked up a cub scout book and it has tons of outdoor adventure ideas in it too.

Good luck and have fun! Let them think up their own adventures!

CSIENK Posts: 6,721
8/24/12 12:52 P

The poster below gave you my best answer... a nature scavenger hunt. Or see who can collect the most different kind of leaves (make sure they know what poison ivy looks like!). When I was young and we went camping (I have 6 younger brothers and sisters), I enjoyed going on a hike, skipping stones, the occasional aforementioned scavenger hunt, playing games like hide and seek in the forest, and helping to build the campfire for the evening's fire. (Sometimes we built a teepee type fire... sometimes a log cabin type.) If it was raining, we enjoyed reading, playing dominoes and puzzles. We did most of the same activities with our own kids when we went camping. You mentioned glow sticks. Those are fun, as is a water balloon fight (make sure to pick up the pieces of broken balloons afterwards.) Of course we also went canoeing and swimming, but you were looking for ideas when you can't get to the water.

Edited by: CSIENK at: 8/24/2012 (12:56)
SHOHNEKE Posts: 381
8/24/12 11:31 A

Honestly, a butterfly net and a mason jar can provide hours of entertainment. Or create a nature scavenger hunt...have them find certain trees, flowers, bugs, whatever. Provides entertainment and a great learning experience. Bring along some paper and crayons and have them make leaf rubbings. If you are near a lake/stream have them catch frogs or minnows with their butterfly nets. Don't forget a good ole fashioned hike.

JADOMB SparkPoints: (134,622)
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8/22/12 12:35 P

I just re-watched an old classic last night that was running on cinemax. It was "Tom Sawyer" made back in 73. Don't let the date stump ya, it was actually done quite well. Tom Sawyer was one of my favorite books and as a young boy that lived on the Snake River, I admired their grit and ability to have fun with nothing. I actually built a raft and floated down the river and even made a fort on one of the islands just like they did in the book and this movie. If you can and have time, you may want to watch it with the kids before you go. It may give them ideas of how to enjoy camping out.

Besides that and all the google ideas, camping is the best time to really help them understand how to rough it. In this day and age, it may come in handy. Find a book on basic survival stuff and play act scenarios. Let them understand that while foraging for berries and such sounds fun, they truly have to know what they are looking for since some berries are edible but many are not. I always used these opportunities as teaching moments. They are at a very good age for sucking up information like a sponge. Have fun and make it memorable.

TISTEN23 SparkPoints: (31,222)
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8/22/12 12:13 P

My 2 boys (7 and 4) have both shot guns before, but we had to put them away because we were fostering for a while...then we stopped, and havent had time to get them back. I have tonka trucks for them, kayaks, glo sticks, but when its dark the glo sticks is all I have so far....

JADOMB SparkPoints: (134,622)
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8/21/12 10:09 P

Not even BB guns. or wristrockets(slingshots), or bow and arrows? Those are so much fun for young kids. Just make sure they are trained right. Or they'll shoot their eye out. ;-)

TISTEN23 SparkPoints: (31,222)
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8/21/12 9:30 P

Boys ages 4, 5, 7 and girls ages 6 and 7. We are tent camping in a Forest near a lake. We do not have access to guns.

JADOMB SparkPoints: (134,622)
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8/21/12 7:15 P

I just went to your site and see you have a couple young boys and it looks like you are going to be around the Mt. Hood area. By the way, I was raised in eastern Oregon.

There are many things I can think of right off hand. BB gun target shooting, learning some basic survival techniques, finding and researching stuff, etc. I just googled "what young boys can do when out camping" and it gave all kinds of other ideas. I would just look up all the things that way and match them to what your boys are like. I was the Tom Sawyer type, so rafting, building forts and that kind of stuff was what interested me at that age. Hope you guys have lots of fun.

JADOMB SparkPoints: (134,622)
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8/21/12 6:48 P

I think we need a bit more info. How old are the kids? Exactly what type of camping are you doing? Tent, motorhome, secluded, park, etc.

TISTEN23 SparkPoints: (31,222)
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8/20/12 4:59 P

I need some ideas for activities to do with kids when we cant be playing in the water...bikes are not an option, as its too rocky...

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