The wide open spaces and adventurous feel of the outdoors affords itself well for teenage party games. Even so, the activities you select will need to be particularly exciting to captivate your finicky teenage audience. Fortunately, there are games that don't require much cleanup and can last for several hours each. Be sure to instruct your participants to bring clothes to the party that they don't mind getting wet or dirty.
Wet Sponge Relay
This game requires four buckets, four cups, four sponges and four evenly divided teams. Teams stand in lines between the cups and buckets, which should be spaced approximately 30 feet apart.
When the whistle blows, teams race to fill up the cups to the brim with water squeezed out of the sponge. Teams must pass the sponge up and down the line as quickly as possible to win the game. Interestingly, many teams find success by slowly passing the saturated sponge toward the cup, as opposed to passing it as quickly as possible.
Repeat the game and switch up teams to change things up. To make things more interesting, declare that all participants must lie on their backs and pass the sponge with their feet, a variation sure to result in soaked players.
Water Balloon Volleyball
This variation of volleyball will eventually degrade into a simple water balloon fight, but can be quite fun in the meantime. Players split into two teams and stand on either side of a volleyball (or badminton) net. Each team receives one large sheet, which must be manipulated into sending a single water balloon over the net into the opposing team's waiting linen.
Teams are forced to coordinate balloon positioning and launching. You will need to create several backup water balloons, as the launching motion takes several attempts to master. Once both teams feel comfortable with the game mechanics, play begins.
If a team fails to catch the balloon or launch it back over the net, the other team receives a point. The first team to 10 points wins the match and gets first dibs on leftover water balloons.
Capture the Glow Stick
When night falls, split your group into three equally sized teams. One team receives three blue glow sticks, another three green glow sticks and the final team three yellow glow sticks. Each participant also receives a flag, which can be a piece of fabric or bandana that must dangle from the pants or shorts. Each team is also assigned an equally sized portion of the playing field, which should be clearly delineated into three parts.
Teams hide their glow sticks within their portions, with the stipulation that each glow stick must be clearly visible. When the whistle blows, teams venture into enemy territory while also trying to protect the team's glow sticks. The first team to possess one of each colored glow stick within friendly territory wins.
Notify the teams before play that participants that lose their flags in enemy territory must drop all flags and cannot move until a friendly player tags them back in. To make things more interesting, hide one orange glow stick in the center of the playing field, which can be used to substitute another color.
Aaron Kopf graduated from the University of Central Arkansas with honors in 2009, holding a Bachelor of Arts in communication. While enjoying his time at college, Kopf was published in The Echo and Vortex magazine.