CLIF Kid Backyard Games: The Perfect Way to Beat Summer Boredom

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Are you tired of spending summer vacation pleading with your kids to turn off the television and computer games? Yet at the same time, you’ve also run through your list of outdoor activities. Luckily there’s a solution to the mid-summer woes. The CLIF Kid Backyard Game of the Year Playoffs is free event for San Diego families that will give kids the chance to play six original backyard games created by young inventors from across the country.

Attendees rolling the dice in Sidewalk Chalk Adventure

The CLIF Kid Backyard Game of the Year is an initiative to reconnect kids with outdoor play for their health and well-being. The San Diego event features outdoor games and activities, a musical performance by Hullabaloo, raffle prizes, and organic snacks by CLIF Kid. In addition, the first 300 kids in attendance will receive a free t-shirt.

The Game Playoffs
The five creative finalists, who range in age from 6 – 9, will present their backyard game at the Playoffs where a panel of judges will select the winning activity. In addition, all the kids attending the event will have a chance to play one of the original backyard games. Here’s a list of the games that await your kids:

  • Dragon Frzz-Ball — Little beasts use a “gauntlet” to knock down as many dragon’s eggs from the opposing team as possible.
  • Card Sharks — Kids will use keen eyes and fast feet in this new play on a classic game of Memory.
  • Home Before Sunset — This game is an adventures in babysitting gone wild. Participants need to get all the kids home in this relay against time.
  • Monkeys Go Bananas — Kids will have a chance to be a monkey and watch their tails in this game of strategy. “Monkeys” need to outsmart the jaguar and bring home the most bananas to win.
  • Soccer Around the World — Kids will get a kick out of dribbling across the continents in this global race.
  • Tic-Tac-Go — X marks the spot, unless O steals your place. This is tic-tac-toe like you haven’t seen before, complete with a competitive twist.

Judges include professional skateboarder Tony Hawk,  Stacy Tornio and Ken Keffer. Torino and Keffer are the authors of The Kids’ Outdoor Adventure Book: 448 Great Things to Do in Nature Before You Grow Up, which includes fun outdoor activities for every season. Be sure to arrive in time for the judging and award ceremony, which starts at 12:00 pm. Hawk will be available to sign autographs at the event.


Helpful Tips for the Day
Be sure to take note of the following tips as you plan your day at the CLIF Kid Backyard Games.

Parking — There are plenty of parking spaces in Liberty Station; and best of all, parking is free. Ample parking lots and street spaces are available on Cushing Rd. (adjacent to NTC Park), as well as a parking lot within the park itself.

Bathrooms — There are several clean and kid-friendly bathrooms available right at the park site.

Weather — NTC Park is located in Liberty Station, which isn’t far from the ocean. Even summer days have a tendency to be a bit cold if the clouds don’t burn off. So be sure to bring a sweater, even if you plan to leave it in the car. And of course, don’t forget sunscreen and a hat if you plan to be outside. Even overcast days can cause yucky sunburns.

Eats — We know kiddos get hungry for more than just snacks and water. If you want to grab lunch or an early dinner, there are plenty of family-friendly restaurants within walking distance. Panera, Con Pane, Corvette Diner, Smash Burger, Luna Grill, and Tender Greens are just a few of the many dining options. There’s also a Von’s and Trader Joe’s if you want to grab picnic food and supplies to go.

CLIF Kid Backyard Game of the Year Playoffs
Saturday, July 27, 2013
10:00 am – 3:00 pm (12:00 pm awards ceremony)
NTC Park, located along Farragut Rd. and Cushing Rd.

What are your favorite outdoor games to play with your kids? 

— Leah R. Singer

Photos courtesy CLIF Kid Backyard Game of the Year