Hoist your flags up and get ready for a way to celebrate Flag Day that your kids will never forget. All you need are a few extra kiddos or players and a bit of imagination. Oh, and flags. You’re gonna need lots of flags. Read on for 3 classics to play today.

capture the flag

Capture the Flag

You need:
2 flags (any flag will do! Pirates vs. Butterflies? Sure!)
2 teams, so a minimum of 4 players per team. The more the better.

The object:  capture the other team’s flag. Each team designates their territories, the location of their flag and their jail. Once the flag is in place it cannot be moved. There is also a safety zone around the flag (10 ft. if room permits) where the flag’s team cannot enter unless the opposing team does (this prevents impossible-to-pass guarding of the flag).

Each team heads into the opposing team’s territory. Here’s why you need more players: some of your players should guard your flag, some should be sent out to try and capture the enemy flag. Anyone “tagged” by the other team is put in their jail. Your team will be trying to free their teammates from jail by tagging them without being caught, and still attempting to capture the flag. If you get the flag, you must make it back to your own territory without getting tagged. If you do this, you win! S’mores all around!

Tip: This is a great one to play camping and at dusk, because it reduces visibility and makes sneaking up on the enemy more fun. Switch players and sides and play again!

Flag Football

This one has all the basic rules of regular football, minus the tackling part, so kids of all ages can play. Just try and grab the flag out of the opponent with the ball’s back pocket. All you need is a football and bandanas or pieces of cloth the same color to designate teams (in a pinch we’ve even used white socks vs. black socks). Put flags into the back pocket of the players to designate teams.

Flag & Frisbee Golf

Play similar to the rules of golf or frisbee golf, but make a basic course at home using homemade flags (try cutting up a banner into individual flags). Instead of trying to hit a ball into the hole, you’re trying to hit the flag with the frisbee. Place them around the yard or in a park (just be sure you’re not damaging park property) by simply tying cloth flags in a tree, propped up in the ground, etc. Make a 9-flag course and keep track of how many throws it takes each player to hit the flag. The lowest score wins!

What’s your favorite flag game? 

—Amber Gueteber

photo: Lydia Liu via flickr