We’ve all heard these statements and even said some ourselves.
“I dare you!”
“Bet you can’t!”
“I can beat you!”
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Now the challenge is on and there is no turning back! Who will win and who will lose? Challenges are fun, unpredictable, and are an excellent way to beat boredom. In this article of fun challenges, we have some for teens and some to play with friends. (Although they may not be friends after they compete with you in some of these challenges!) Try team challenges or simply time yourself and see if you can beat your own record or someone else’s.
Fun Challenges for Teens
During summer, spring break, on weekends, anytime teens gather together, help them pass the time with our fun challenges for teens. Our list works for parties, get-togethers, and camp sessions. Many are messy or gross, part of the fun for teens! Some require parental supervision to keep teens from going too far and having a dangerous experience. Beware! All of our challenges guarantee fun and excitement.
Chopstick and Pea Challenge
Use chickpeas, dried black beans, or black-eyed peas and chopsticks. If you don’t have chopsticks, try drinking straws. Set the timer for one minute and see who can get the most beans from a pile into their small bowl. With chopsticks, only one hand can be used.
Cling Wrap Challenge
Since this wrap seals and grips tight, using it to trap someone in a chair provides for an amusing diversion. Avoid eyes, nose, and mouth as a safety consideration. Divide your group into teams or simply use a timer to see who can escape the fastest.
Jumping Rope Challenges
Inexpensive dollar store jump ropes provide several clever challenges.
- See who can jump the longest using a timer.
- Count the number of jumps to see who has the most.
- See who can jump the fastest – the most jumps in a certain amount of time.
Hula Hoop Challenge
Similar to the jump rope challenge, the goal is to keep the hoop going the longest without stopping. Try adding some music. Some tunes help, but others have a rhythm that can impede or stop progress. You can also add other toys to the challenge. Try bouncing a ball without losing the hoop’s rhythm.
Blindfold participants for this competition. The goal is to keep the ball in the air for the longest amount of time, not letting it touch the ground. If this challenge is too difficult, take off the blindfolds and play that way – this also provides a longer challenge.
On a warm spring or summer day cool off with one of these challenges. Take the challenges outside as they are messy and wet. And don’t forget your phone for pictures. You will want to catch the shocked and shivering images of your friends.
- Ice Bucket Challenge
Choose a hot summer day for this icy challenge. Participants must dress in swimming gear and have clean, dry clothes and towels for after they compete. Designate a dumper, or you can take turns with the dumper being the next person to get doused. Fill a bucket with ice and water. Anyone who ducks away from the bucket of water or refuses to be part of this challenge loses.
- Icy Pool Challenge
Fill a kid’s inflatable pool with ice and water. Each person must sing one verse of “Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream,” or another song while submerged to shoulder height in the icy water. Or you can use a timer and see who can stay in the pool for the longest period of time.
These challenges are best done outside, or at least on a plastic protected surface – a dollar store shower curtain works well. Wear old clothes and have water and towels for clean-up. You might want to stipulate the need to clean up one’s own vomit before trying some of these challenges. It is also a good idea to appoint a “referee” to call a halt if a challenge becomes dangerous or someone is going too far.
Food Tasting Games
We have included three pretty gross food challenges and two that are more pleasant to enjoy with your friends. You will need to make some advance preparations, but these challenges are worth it!
- Baby Food Challenge
You will want ten to twelve different jars of baby food. A non-participant removes the labels from the jars, carefully numbering the jars and keeping a list of what each jar contains. Then those participating taste the foods in the jars and guess what kind each is. The person with the most correct guesses wins this challenge. For extra fun, have the participants wear bibs and use baby spoons.
- Mystery Food Challenge
Eat it or wear it – you choose! This is another game best played where clean-up is easy. Those challenged choose whether to eat or wear food in lunch bags or plastic containers. Begin by mixing together several foods that usually are not eaten together, for example, bananas, tomatoes, and tuna. Number each bag and put corresponding numbers in a small bowl or basket. Each challenger draws a number and is given the corresponding bag. They must decide if they will eat the contents of their bag or wear it. If they choose to eat it and throw up, they lose the challenge.
- Food Can Challenge
Similar to the Mystery Food Challenge but not as gross and messy, this game calls for about three cans of food per person playing. Have someone not participating remove the labels from the cans of food. Number the back of the labels and put corresponding numbers on the cans so you know the contents. Also, put numbers on small pieces of paper and place the slips of paper in a bag or basket. Each person draws a number from the basket and eats a spoonful of food from the corresponding can. At this point, they get a point if they can swallow the food, and a point if they correctly guess what the food is. They completely lose if they vomit or spit the food out. Challengers continue until all the cans have been tasted or until only one player is left. The person with the most points wins this challenge.
- Blindfolded Food Tasting Challenge
Prepare some enjoyable food combinations and place them on toothpicks or in small bowls. Challengers are blindfolded, not allowed to touch the food, and given tastes of food one at a time. They must guess the food and the person with the most correct guesses wins this challenge.
- Food Source Challenge
This challenge involves an expenditure but is well worth it. You can choose any fast food – burgers or fries work well. Have someone visit several fast food restaurants and purchase the same food from each. Then have a tasting challenge, with each blindfolded person guessing which restaurant the food came from. The person with the most correct guesses wins.
As long as challengers follow directions, this game is completely safe. The goal is not to see how many marshmallows one can cram in their mouth, but to be able to say “Chubby Bunny” with as many marshmallows in their mouth as possible. If a person loses a marshmallow from their mouth or cannot say the words in an understandable way, they lose the challenge.
Smoothie Drinking Challenge
Everyone loves an awesome tasting smoothie. But what if the smoothie has some strange and even disliked ingredients? For this challenge, start by making a smoothie with the normal ingredients, such as fruit, milk, and juice for each person. Then grab twenty things like hot peppers, mustard, pickles, tuna, and lunch meat. Write the name of each ingredient on a slip of paper and put them in a basket or box. Take turns drawing a slip and adding the ingredient to your smoothie. When all ingredients have been used, add ice and blend. The goal is to drink the entire smoothie without throwing up. Anyone who gets sick or cannot drink their entire smoothie loses this challenge.
Note: You can adjust the number of ingredients based upon the number of players with five for each player being a good number to use.
Challenges to Do with Friends
No one likes losing friends, and our list of challenges to do with friends are not mean or ugly, just fun. Invite your friends over for an afternoon of craziness. Some of our challenges take advance preparation, but many can be done with items from around the house.
Draw Blindfolded Challenge
One person serves as a judge and provides the directions. Your other friends are blindfolded and given a pencil and sheet of paper. The person serving as judge challenges the players to draw a picture of something, such as a dog, cat, or a person. The best drawing wins the challenge and the winner becomes the next judge and direction giver.
Explode the Watermelon Challenge
This outdoor challenge works well on a hot day when everyone wants watermelon. You will need a small, seedless watermelon for each friend and many thick rubber bands. Each person begins at the same time putting rubber bands around their watermelon. Eventually the watermelons explode. The first friend whose watermelon explodes wins this challenge. This challenge also works well as a team exercise.
Bubblegum Blowing Challenge
Super fun and safe, this challenge only requires a bunch of bubble gum. Count and divide pieces, making sure each person participating in the challenge has the same number of pieces. Then see who can blow the biggest bubble.
Even girls who think they know everything about makeup may find these challenges daunting. And don’t forget the guys! Grab a camera and post the results of these fun challenges. Just provide plenty of cleaning up rags and towels, plus some polish and makeup remover.
- Manicure Challenge
You and your friends compete to see who can polish the most number of nails in one minute. However, the challenge becomes really interesting as participants are only allowed to use their mouths. Have one friend not participate in the challenge and serve as the judge. If two individuals paint the same number of nails, the judge decides which ones look best.
- Hairstyling Challenge
Blindfold participants for this fun challenge. Provide combs, brushes, and hair accessories. Assign partners with the goal to create a hairstyle while blindfolded. You should get some crazy results!
- Makeup Challenge
Pair up challenge participants and blindfold one person. Seat the other in a chair. The blindfolded partner puts makeup on the other person. Make sure you include foundation, blush, lipstick, eyeshadow, and mascara.
No mirrors are allowed until the challenge is over.
Build a Card House Challenge
You will need a deck of cards for each person participating in this challenge. The goal is to build the biggest and best card house you can. Make sure you choose a flat, solid place for your creation. If your house falls down, you lose this challenge. Fun variations of the Card House Challenge include:
- Build a wall with dominoes
Purchase several boxes of dominoes at a dollar store. Everyone playing gets the same number of dominoes and must have at least five on the bottom row. That is the only rule one must follow. Participants take turns drawing dominoes and adding them to their wall. The challenger whose wall is the tallest and remains standing wins this challenge.
- Build a house with building blocks or interlocking plastic bricks
Set a timer, dump out the blocks or bricks and start building. The player with the biggest and best structure wins.
“How Good Is Your Memory?” Challenge
A non-participant creates a tray or sets up a table with many small items on it. Cover the items with a cloth or towel. When you remove the cover, each person has a few seconds to look at the items. After you recover the items, have players write down a list of the items they remember. The person with the most correct items written down wins this challenge.
Egg Dropping Challenge
This old standard challenge remains a favorite. Provide a raw egg to each person. Have a pile of supplies including paper, tap, bubble wrap, straws, string, etc. Each person builds a structure to hold their egg and keep it from breaking. The challenge enters when the egg is dropped. Start with holding the egg at shoulder height. Next, have challengers stand on a chair and drop their egg. Keep going higher – the top of a wall, the second story of a house, etc. The egg that survives the longest wins this challenge.
All of our challenges are designed for both fun and safety. They will help time pass and create lasting memories. Make sure you have a camera ready to capture those scared, funny, and messy faces. Play on!
Susan majored in English with a double minor in Humanities and Business at Arizona State University and earned a Master’s degree in Educational Administration from Liberty University. She taught grades four through twelve in both public and private schools. Subjects included English, U.S. and world history and geography, math, earth and physical science, Bible, information technologies, and creative writing.
Susan has been freelance writing for over ten years, during which time she has written and edited books, newspaper articles, biographies, book reviews, guidelines, neighborhood descriptions for realtors, Power Point presentations, resumes, and numerous other projects.