New and improved is not better than tried and true!
It seems like I spend a lot of time trying to dream up and create new family reunion games and activities to excite and entertain family members. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve fallen back on the old “tried and true” activities and in the end they become the new favorites of our family.
For instance, this year we’ve done tug of war at several reunions and parties and our families have LOVED it! We did several categories- family vs. family, girl cousins vs. boy cousins, the original “big 6” (my husband’s brothers and sisters), great grand girls vs. boys and so on.
The most difficult part of a tug a war is finding a rope. We borrowed a rope from our neighbors who are ranchers. When looking for a tug of war rope I look for a rope that is 75- 100 long, a thick sturdy rope (1” in. 1.5 in diameter) and 100 percent cotton. This rope is available from the family reunion helper store.
The rope pictured above is soft on your hands to manila ropes. These 100% cotton ropes reduce rope burn and splinters. Professional tug of war competitions like to use manila ropes but for a family reunion I suggest cotton ropes. Ropes like this one can cost between $150.00- $200.00 but I think you’ll find it’s an activity that can be used every year and adapted to every theme.
Preparing the tug of war rope
Find the center of your rope and mark with a piece of colorful tape or a bandana. Make a center mark on the ground for your starting point. You can make your marks with logs, ropes or create obstacles such as water or a mud puddle.
Make two more marks on the ground (I suggest 13 feet) equal distance from the center line.
The teams start with the rope’s center line directly above the line marked on the ground. We like to start with the rope on the ground and have the official/judge tell the participants to “pick up the rope” before the contest begins. When the official gives the order to “pull” teams begin pulling in an attempt to pull the other team across the center line or obstacle.
Tug of War Hints
Never make a loop by wrapping the rope around the hand to get a better grip.
Don’t tie the rope around the last persons waist.
On your family reunion invitation add “gloves” on their list of things to bring.
Did you know that tug of war was part of the Olympic Games from 1900 until 1920.