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DIY Giant Summer Backyard Games

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Header

Summer in Dallas is less like one of the four seasons and more like most of our year! There are definitely times to beat the heat, but unless you want to spend March through November indoors, you’ve just got to embrace it. Thankfully, we love summer. One of our favorite places to go in Dallas during the summer is Klyde Warren Park. It is a park on top of a bridge in the middle of the city full of fun games and play areas for families. Our family loves to play their lawn games like Croquet, Pantique, and Ping Pong.

Since a we can’t always just hop in the car for a trip downtown, I wanted to find a way to bring the spirit of Klyde Warren Park into my own backyard. So I created these Giant DIY Lawn Games! These games are perfect to play with the whole family. You can make them in one afternoon and enjoy them all summer long. The three games we are making today are Yard Dice, Kubb, and Giant Jenga. I’m tired of being cooped up inside – let’s get started!

DIY Yard Dice

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Dice

Dice are a classic part of any family board game night and this giant DIY version makes the game come to life! To make your DIY Yard Dice, you will need:

  • 5 Blocks of Wood (Either these pre-cut blocks or a 4 x 4 board cut into 4″ cubes)
  • Stain
  • Circle Foam Brush
  • White Paint

If you are cutting your blocks out of a 4 x 4″ post, sand the sides really well. You can finish your dice however you like! We decided to stain them, but you could paint them or leave the natural wood.

Using a circle foam brush will help your dots (called pips) to be uniform, but you can use any brush to paint the dots on your dice. Cover your foam brush with paint and use a picture of a dice (or real dice) to help you correctly place your pips.

Helpful Hint: The opposite sides should always add up to seven. So opposite sides will be 1 and 6, 2 and 5, 3 and 4.

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Dice 2

You’re ready to play! There are so many great games to play with dice – we love to play Yahtzee (you can find instructions from Hasbro here and a printable score card here) and Farkle (you can find instructions here). One of our new favorite dice games (that’s perfect for kids) is called Cooties – you can find the instructions and free printable score cards here.

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog 1


DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Kubb

This game (pronounced Koob) is a cross between horseshoes, pool, and bowling. It’s a great game for a bigger crowd (it can be played with anywhere from 2-12 players) and kids can easily join in the fun. To make it, you will need:

  • 6 Feet of a 4″ x 4″ post (To make the King Pin and Kubbs)
  • 6 Feet of 1.5″ – 2″ Dowel Rod (To make the Throwing Sticks)
  • 4 Feet of .75″ Dowel Rod (To make the Corner Pins)

To make the King Pin, cut 12 inches off the 4 x 4 post. Decorate the King Pin however you like to show its importance (this is a great way to let the kids get creative with paint!)

The Kubbs will measure 3″ x 3″ x 6″. Because 4 x 4 posts are actually only 3.5″ x 3.5″, you just need to cut off .5″ from each side. Then cut them into 6″ posts.

To make your Throwing Sticks, cut the 1.5-2″ dowel rod into 12 inch pieces. make your corner pins by cutting the .75″ dowel rod into 12 inch stakes.

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Kubb 2

To play, mark out a playing area of about 15 x 25 feet with your corner posts. On the two shorter ends, set your 6 Kubbs on end in even intervals between the corner posts. Then set the King Pin directly in the center of the playing area. The object of the game is to knock over all five of your opponents Kubbs (like horseshoes) before finally knocking over the King Pin to win the game.

If you knock over the King Pin before knocking over all their Kubbs, you immediately lose (like the 8-ball in Pool). Teams take turns tossing their throwing sticks and trying to knock over their competition’s Kubbs. You may only toss the Throwing Sticks underhand and end over end. 

If you have an especially competitive crowd, there are variations of this game, which can be found here.

Yard Jenga

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Jenga

This simple game has entertained families for years and this giant, outdoor version bring the fun to the next level. To make Yard Jenga, you will need:

  • (54) 10.5″ Pieces cut from 2 x 4″ boards
  • (Optional) RIT Fabric Dye

We cut the 2 x 4″ board into 10.5″ pieces and sanded each piece so they would slide easily. At this point, your game could be ready to go! We took it one step further and dyed the pieces different colors. We just used the instructions from RIT. After dying, allow them to dry overnight.

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Jenga 2

Jenga is a simple game to play, but you basically stack the blocks three at a time so they are in a square when you look down on them. Each person takes a turn pulling one block out from the stack and putting it on top of the stack. The person who makes the tower fall is the “loser”, although I would argue that the falling tower is the best part! You can find more detailed instructions here.

DIY Yard Games - Megan Harney for Dallas Moms Blog Pinterest

These three $DMBDIY lawn games should help bring the spirit of Klyde Warren Park to your backyard.

What are your favorite summer games for the whole family? Share in the comments below!


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31 Responses to DIY Giant Summer Backyard Games

  1. Janice Badgett August 6, 2015 at 6:29 pm #

    What fun!

    • Megan Harney
      Megan Harney August 7, 2015 at 11:05 am #

      Thank you! And thanks for stopping by 🙂

    • Roxanne July 26, 2017 at 10:26 pm #

      I play Bunch once a month. How fun it would be to play with
      these big dice in the back yard. 😆

  2. Robin Rue (@massholemommy) August 7, 2015 at 11:19 am #

    The giant jenga would be a huge hit with my boys. They would love it.

  3. Logan Can August 7, 2015 at 11:59 am #

    How cute is that? I will have to remember this for my son’s birthday party! We like to do Fall Festival themed parties and are always looking for games to play in our backyard!

    • Megan Harney
      Megan Harney August 7, 2015 at 10:02 pm #

      What a fun theme! These would be so perfect! I also recently saw an idea to spray paint Twister on the grass. Wouldn’t that be a fun addition?

  4. momwithfive August 7, 2015 at 1:35 pm #

    What a great idea! Thanks for sharing.

  5. Jacob Fu August 7, 2015 at 2:22 pm #

    What great ideas! For some reason making any game BIGGER makes it so much more fun 🙂

  6. Lisa Jones August 7, 2015 at 4:58 pm #

    Such Creative Ideas For Games Love Em Must Make With The Kiddies Thank You!

  7. Liz Mays August 7, 2015 at 5:42 pm #

    Oh wow, these are just so cool. These would be great to bring out during a barbeque!

  8. Jeanine August 7, 2015 at 6:02 pm #

    Wow I love DIY but I wouldn’t ever think to do any of this. This is really awesome, such great ideas my kids would love it all.

  9. Adriana August 7, 2015 at 8:20 pm #

    This is SUCH a cute idea!! Have you heard of/do you watch Big Brother? The dice remind me of one of the competitions on that show! Love it, I’m pinning this and so have to try it! We have a family BBQ coming up so this would be super fun!
    xo Adriana
    Daily Dose of Design

  10. rika August 7, 2015 at 9:59 pm #

    fun and creative idea. DIY with kids is fun. I need to plan a fun DIY project for our family , maybe next weekend

  11. Felicita Moncada August 7, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

    Awesome DIY project! I keep telling my hubby to make a cornhole game for the yard but I’m thinking I might need that Giant Jenga…. lol,

  12. Mykidsguide August 8, 2015 at 2:43 am #

    You are so creative. These yard games look so fun. I’m sure the giant Jenga would be a hit, not just for the kids, but the adults as well.

  13. Rosey August 8, 2015 at 8:06 am #

    What a fun idea for making the dice. I think these turned out great too!

  14. Wendy August 8, 2015 at 11:08 am #

    Love these ideas! I belong to Grange (a fraternal org). We are always looking for new ways to entertain the kids at Jr Grange.

  15. Rae August 8, 2015 at 11:42 am #

    What a great idea! We’re always losing dice, maybe having ginormous ones for parties will help us lose less of them. Thanks for sharing, definitely giving the husband a project now!

  16. April @ Everyday Fitness and Nutrition August 8, 2015 at 12:57 pm #

    I love the idea of a giant lawn jenga. We always loved playing the regular version so I know it would be fun outside by the pool.

  17. Becki S August 8, 2015 at 2:10 pm #

    Wow! That yard jenga is now on my life bucket list, how fun. These would be great to host a yard party with all the friends and family, thanks for sharing.

  18. Michele D August 9, 2015 at 7:23 am #

    What an awesome idea! My kids would love playing with these huge dice. How fun!

  19. Maria-Teresa A. August 9, 2015 at 8:52 am #

    Wow these look amazing – what fun ideas! I need to try making the dice. They would be fun for adults too!!!

  20. Tatanisha Pitts-Worthey August 9, 2015 at 8:21 pm #

    Oh wow this looks so much fun!!! I’m so jealous I want those for my boys too. I’m in love with this idea.

  21. Joanne T Ferguson August 9, 2015 at 10:00 pm #

    How much fun would making and playing these backyard games! I love the dice and would be fun to invite friends over for a BBQ and some games!

  22. Adrienne August 10, 2015 at 6:35 am #

    This is so cool! I just pinned it to my DIY Pinterest board. I would love to have these games on hand at my next backyard get together. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Lauri May 27, 2016 at 6:57 pm #

    How many 2×4 did you need to make 54 Jenga 10.5 pcs?

    • Karolyn June 12, 2016 at 2:40 pm #

      Hi. At 10.5″ per piece, you would be able to get 9 pieces out of an 8′ length. So I you would need 6 2x4s at 8 feet each.

  24. LeeAnn Propper June 23, 2017 at 9:54 am #

    I am going to make the giant Jenga today, wish me luck.


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