Friday, June 18, 2010

Cousin Camp 2010 in Review: Friday

Friday was the last day of Cousin Camp, and we have always done carnival-style games to earn prizes on the last day. It has gotten a bit bigger each year. After the first year, we handed out tickets for each of the games and then let them cash in their tickets for prizes in the "prize store."

The first game was the duck pond. There were big mama ducks and little baby ducks, each with a number of points written in permanent marker on the bottom. Amazingly enough, no one took the mama ducks. When I asked why, they all told me that last year the big ducks had the smaller number of points. I was surprised they remembered! Maybe they'll remember that "bigger is not always better"? :)

Next up was the penny race. I tossed 40 pennies into a shallow fishbowl with sand. They used these tongs to see how many pennies they could pull out in a minute. It's harder than it sounds!

Next was shooting hoops. We adjusted the height of the basket and how far away they were based on age. They had to see how many baskets they could make in one minute. I was surprised at how well the younger ones did!

Then there was the sandbox treasure hunt. I hid 24 sea-themed plastic creatures in the sandbox. (Actually, my sister hid them for me. She was a good sport, even when a few live frogs jumped out and surprised her in the process.) They had one minute to dig around and see how many creatures they could find. Again, this was harder than it sounds. After nine kids' turns, we still had several creatures unaccounted for.

Then we went back to the duck pond to pick a floating treasure. I cut a pool noodle into about 6" sections and hid a piece of paper with a number of points inside each one. They picked a noodle to find out how many points they won.

Lastly, we separated them into two groups and did two relay races. The winning team got 5 tickets each. Amazingly enough, the same team won both races. (We made sure to separate them fairly by age.)

In this first race (above), I gave the first person a pie plate filled with water. They had to hand it to the person behind them, passing it over their head. It was especially difficult since we grouped them from tallest to shortest. :)

The last relay race was called "Sinking Ship." Each team had a bucket filled with water. They had to use old cottage cheese tubs to empty the bucket, one tubful at a time. The first person in line filled the tub and passed it to the end of the line, where it would be dumped and passed back to the first person. They weren't allowed to skip people, either. Each team member had to handle the tub on its way through the line.

We put the younger kids in the back, since they tend to like to dump water anyway.

When we were all done, I picked a number out of a bowl and had them check their tickets to see who had that number. The grand prize this year was a CD set of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. My 11-year-old niece won it.

After all the games were over, there was still more fun to come. My dad manned the prize store, and he took his role very seriously. :) He talked like an "islander" and even dressed the part. The kids had a blast selecting their prizes.

I can't believe I didn't get a "before" picture of the prize table, but this messy picture will have to do. Everything was grouped by the number of tickets it costed (1,5,10,15,20). The kids had a lot of fun "spending" their tickets!

I also can't believe I didn't get pictures of the crafts we did later that evening. The girls made white rose headbands (more on that next week, with a full pictorial tutorial) and the boys made paratroopers out of Army men and plastic shopping bags. They enjoyed them quite a bit!

To finish Cousin Camp with a bang, we had funnel cakes for our snack that night. Would you believe most of my nieces and nephews had never had funnel cake?! They thought it looked gross at first, but after the first adventurous person pronounced it "awesome," they devoured them! You can find the recipe I used here. I found that it made twice as many as it said, but that may be because I didn't make mine huge.

So that's the end of my Cousin Camp review for another year. We had a lot of fun this year, and it seems that it gets a little easier each year as I get to know the kind of activities they like and develop somewhat of a routine. I hope you've enjoyed the peek into our Cousin Camp. Let me know if you have one of your own!