Musical Games for Your Family Reunion or Party

When you plan your family reunion, consider planning a few musical games and activities. “Musical Chairs” is a fun game if someone doesn’t have to go to the emergency room.  I’ve never played a “friendly” game of “Musical Chairs”. A calmer version of the game is “Musical Island”. To get the wiggles out, try a little “Dice Dancing”, and for a new twist on “Charades” try “Song Charades”. Make sure you plan for my favorite musical activity, “There’s a Spider On My…” it even works around the campfire.


Song Relay

This is a fun and simple game to play while you’re waiting for an activity or event to begin. Choose a familiar song that all the players know like “Row, Row, Row Your Boat”. Sit in a circle and determine the order of singers. The #1 singer sings the first line of the song and passes the song on to the #2 singer who continues with the second line of the song with NO break in the rhythm. Keep passing the song to each singer until the song is completed. As you get a little experience try more difficult songs or try singing each WORD individually.

For example: Singer #1: Row
#2: Row
#3: Row 
#4: Your 
#5: Boat 
#6: Gently
#7: Down 
#8: The
#9: Stream

Dice Dancing

You’ll need a dice for this game. Designate six spaces on your dance floor as space #1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. Put up simple signs for each area or use numbered hula hoops. While music is playing, have the kids dance around the dance floor. When the music stops, the kids should move to one of the six spaces. Roll the dice, and the kids at that number are out. (I have a large 3- inch die I like to use) Start the music again and continue until you have one or two children left- they are your winners.

Hint: When you get down to 10 dancers tell them that when the music stops there can only be two children on a number and when you get down to 5 dancers tell them they may only have 1 person on a number. (Sometimes I tell them that if I roll the number “1” EVERYONE is back in to start dancing again- they love that!)

Hint: You can also play this in a private swimming pool. Participants swim around until the music stops and then they have to quickly swim to a number.

Song Charades

clip_image006Play song charades with your party guests. Divide the group into two teams. One person from one team is it and thinks of a song. He acts out that song, without using words, just as in normal charades play. If no one can guess what song he is trying to act out after one minute, he has the option of allowing the other team to guess and get a point or by humming the tune of the song, hoping to get his team to guess and receive the point. Play alternates back and forth until one team gets to a predetermined number of points.

Musical Island


Play this game like Musical Chairs. Put a carpet mat or piece of laminated poster board on the floor- that’s the island. All the players walk around in a circle, and as they go round, they must step on the mat. When the music stops, the player on the mat is out.

There’s a Spider on…

(Sung to “If You’re Happy and You Know It” Uses the chords F, B flat and C7)

This is my favorite group sing-a-long song. Give everyone a spider to sing with. Kids of all ages have fun with this music activity. Older groups will want to make up their own verses)

There’s a spider on the floor on the floor image
There’s a spider on the floor on the floor
There’s a spider on the floor-
He just walked right through the door
There’s a spider on the floor on the floor

There’s a spider on my toes
And he’s wiggling his nose

There’s a spider on my knee
And he’s really scaring me

There’s a spider on my thigh
And I think I’m going to cry

There’s a spider on my belly
He’s eating strawberry jelly

There’s a spider on my neck on my neck  image
I feel just like a wreck

There’s a spider on my ear
I’m afraid and I’m afear

Now the spider’s on my face, on my face!
Oh, what a big disgrace

Now the spider’s on my head, on my head!
Oh, I wish that he were dead.

There’s a spider on my back on my back
I’m having an attack

There’s a spider on my toosh
He’s looking kind of sqooshed

Musically Yours,

Aunt MO

Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music. Angela Monet

Top Ten Reasons to Play Musical Pipe Chimes

Making music with pipe chimes is an easy and inexpensive way to have fun with your family. My Mom saw pipe chimes more than thirty years ago and our family has been making music with conduit pipes ever since. Because pipe chimes are easy to make and easy to play, pipe chimes are perfect for family reunions, parties and church groups.   Anyone can play pipe chimes- no musical experience necessary!  So here are’s tongue in check top ten reasons to play pipe chimes!

Top Ten Reasons to Learn to Play Pipe Chimes

10. A pipe chime doubles as a game piece in an over- sized Clue game.

9. American Idol now lets you use an instrument.

8. Studies show that the resonating tones of pipe chimes stimulates hair follicles which encourages hair growth.

7. Chuck Norris plays pipe chimes.

6. Pipe chime playing is good for your hands. I probably have stronger hands/fingers than most people I know. And have you ever noticed the hands of a pianist? Beautiful, long, tapered fingers. Chances are that if you’ve ever admired someone’s hands, they play the piano… or pipe chimes.

5. Playing pipe chimes helps you burn calories. A 155 pound person burns 281 calories in an hour of pipe chime playing.

4. You can join the AFPOPCP – The association for the preservation of pipe chime playing.

3. People will automatically assume you’re a genius. Really, I’ve heard this a lot. People uttering "He/she plays the pipe chimes" in the same tone reserved for "He/she has an IQ of 180." You just can’t help but admire someone that plays an instrument.

2. Colleges like musical instruments on applications–it’s never too early to boost your kid’s qualifications! Hundreds of college scholarships for Pipe Chime playing go unclaimed each year.

And the number one reason to play pipe chimes…

1. Self-defense!

But seriously… Pipe chimes are perfect for your family reunion or family get- together.  With our easy to follow instructions and thirteen fun chimes songs, there’s no reason to miss out on the musical fun of conduit pipe chimes!  We don’t sell pipe chimes but on our site you can find complete instructions for making your own music pipe chimes and printable music at

Aunt MO

Coming together is a beginning
Keeping together is progress
Working together is success -Henry Ford

Musical Round Songs for Your Family Reunion

Family Reunion Helper

I love singing songs around the campfire and I’ve done it at family reunions, girls camps, scout camps and at workshops. There are so many fun and traditional songs that can be sung around a fire, but my favorite songs are rounds.


This is how a round works. The first group begins singing the song. The second group waits and begins singing the first phrase of the song just as the pervious group starts to sing the second phrase of the song. Each group continues singing the song from start to finish. The song ends with the group who started last singing the last phrase of the song alone. It is very common to have three or four groups all singing the same round.

To be successful at singing rounds in a large group setting you have to start with a simple song to warm everyone up. A good example of a simple round song that everyone probably already knows how to sing is “Row, Row, Row Your Boat.


If your group masters “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” challenge them with the “Sophisticated Row Row Row Your Boat” song. Be sure and make copies of the words or a large sign so that singers don’t get hung up on the lyrics.

Propel Propel Propel your craft
Placidly over the liquid solution
ecstatically ecstatically ecstatically ecstatically
existence is merely an illusion.

Other easy rounds are “Are You Sleeping” and “Kookaburra”

Kookaburra (new version)

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Eating all the gum drops he can see
Stop, Kookaburra! Stop, Kookaburra!
Leave some there for me

Silly Version

Kookaburra sits on the electric wire,
Jumping up and down, with his pants on fire.
Ouch, Kookaburra, ouch! Kookaburra,
Hot your tail must be!

The most fail proof way I’ve found to get family reunion groups singing rounds accurately is to be sure there is a strong singer in each group that can help lead their group. You may even want to give your leaders copies of the songs you would like to sing in a round before your reunion so they can become familiar with the music.

Once you have warmed everyone up you can move on to more challenging songs. I have found that adults and children love round singing because they can make a beautiful sound without being too talented musically. There are several songs, when sung in a round, which bring out the most beautiful harmonies.

Oh, How Lovely is the Evening


There are a couple of songs that have actions that go along with the words to the song. “A Ram Sam Sam” is fun sing with actions and looks pretty impressive- especially if you’re the one standing in front of the group watching.


What if your family is an advanced group of round singers? Try this wonderful song that is a bit more complicated and then check out the following round/cannon resources. or “Rounds for Children” from


Be sure and see the fun new family reunion games and family reunion planning helps at 

Aunt MO

“The only thing better than singing, is more singing.”

My Top Ten Family Reunion Songs

I have a favorite family reunion song- it’s upbeat and fun and you feel good when you listen to it and even better when you sing it. It’s a little known song, you haven’t heard it on the radio and it’s never been on the top of the charts but it’s my favorite and I think that when you hear it you’ll like it too.

clip_image002[5]I spent a lot of time looking for my favorite family reunion song, I’ve searched the net and I’ve visited hundreds of family web pages. I found that the most used song on these family web pages is “Family Reunion” by the O’Jays”. I like the lyrics that say, “It’s so nice to see, all the folks you love together”. Not a bad song, really, the song’s only problem is that it is over used and, for my liking,  the tempo is a little slow.

There are some great family reunion songs that are regional in nature such as “Sweet Home Alabama” which would be a great reunion song if you roots were in Alabama or if Texas were your home state, “God Blessed Texas”, or "Louisiana Saturday Night" by Alabama. But you really need to be from one of those places to choose it as your favorite family reunion song.

My list of family reunion songs is quite an eclectic list, songs from many different genres. I think that a reunion song should be upbeat and fun and should make you feel good and if it meets that criterion, I don’t care who sings it or if it is considered country, rock or spiritual in nature.

Let’s start my list with a song that probably couldn’t be classified as “family reunion” music but it has a great tempo and some fun lyrics and to be perfectly honest, is just a guilty pleasure of mine. “The Boys Are Back in Town” is my number 10 choice. My number 9 choice is another fun song- one that you can use to get your “party started” but most people probably don’t think of it as a family reunion song.

Songs numbers two through eight can be considered more traditional family reunion songs and although they didn’t come immediately to my mind, seem to naturally belong on the list.

Song number one is in a class of it’s own but I want you to discover it for yourself. So read on, and when you get to song number one, prepare to be surprised.


#10 Boys Are Back In Town- Bruce Springstein

#9 Get the Party Started- Pink I’m comin’ up
So you better
Get this party started

#8 “Who Says You Can’t Go Home” – Bon Jovi & Sugarland Who says you can’t go home
theres only one place they call you one of their own
Just a hometown boy born a rolling stone
who says you cant go home

#7 Lights of My Hometown- Aaron Lines Don’t know how long I’ve been gone, All I know is it’s been too long

#6 Something To Be Proud Of- Montgomery Gentry That’s something to be proud of
That’s a life you can hang your hat on
That’s a chin held high as the tears fall down
A gut sucked in, a chest stuck out
Like a small town flag a-flyin’
Or a newborn baby cryin’
In the arms of the woman that you love
That’s something to be proud of

#5 Family Reunion- O’Jays It’s so nice to see, All the folks you love together

#4 Home- Chris Daughtry So I’m going home,
Back to the place where I belong,
And where your love has always been enough for me.

#3 These Are My People- Rodney Adkins These are my people
This is where I come from
Were givin’ this life everything we got and then some
It ain’t always pretty
But its real
It’s the way we were made
clip_image004[5]Wouldn’t have it any other way
These are my people

#2 We Are Family- Sister Sledge

All of the people around us they say
Can they be that close
Just let me state for the record
We’re giving love in a family dose

The above songs be downloaded for 99 cents at

And now for MY number one family reunion song-

#1 Family Reunion- Plank Road Publishing

From the hills of California from the shores of Maine

We all come together with the same last name.

It’s our family reunion!

So many aunts and uncles

I’ll have to count again

And all these crazy cousins

I can’t believe we’re kin!

The lyrics are great but don’t mean as much until you put the fun music behind them. You can listen to this song at and you can download it

Our family has had a lot of fun with the reunion song. One year we assigned a few people from each family group to learn the song and then sing it at our family reunion. Many of the performers dressed up in Hill Billy attire and sang it with a twang. It was the highlight of the reunion and soon everyone at the reunion was singing along. It’s easy to learn and easy to sing but if you’re looking for a serious family reunion song this is not it.

“Family Reunion” is upbeat and fun but no one is going to get tears in their eyes when they listen to it- unless they’re tears of laughter!

Aunt MO

The house fly hums in the middle octave key of F.

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