There's something about the Super Bowl that brings out the competitive spirit in everyone. Even a week before the big game, people are already taking sides. Sports pundits, celebrities, politicians, co-workers, family members and friends are all making their picks. If you're hosting a big party on Super Bowl Sunday, tap into the competitive mood of your partygoers by offering games and activities they can participate in during halftime or before the big game.
Another bonus of Super Bowl party games? You'll have something fun to offer guests who aren't big football fans, but who are mainly there to enjoy the event that is Super Bowl Sunday -- laughing at the gameday commercials while noshing on a foot-long sub.
Like any good host or hostess, you'll want to customize the games to the event. Make the activities football- or Super Bowl-related so that they complement the big game, not detract from it. As for prizes, it's up to you whether you want to reward game winners. But if you do, the prizes can be anything from a gift certificate to a local sports bar to dibs on the easy chair.
All you need to do in the planning of any of your games is to get creative and play up the Super Bowl mania. Your guests will have a blast, and your party will be memorable for years to come. Now keep reading, and we'll offer you five game suggestions for your Super Bowl shenanigans.
During the big game, you might have a lot of armchair quarterbacks in your midst, but before the game, you can all be players. If you're planning to have a Super Bowl party, invite your guests over to your house a little earlier in the day and arrange a friendly game of touch football.
Having a pre-game gridiron showdown of your own will help get partygoers in a football state of mind (as if they need it), and it will also help them burn off a few calories before they indulge in the not-so-healthy football fare later on. Kids and adults alike will enjoy the chance to be amateur football players for an hour. And those who don't want to join in can cheer the others from the sidelines.
If you're planning on having your guests stay to watch the Super Bowl later on, you might want to remind them to bring a change of clothes and shoes.
The next Super Bowl party game on our list is more mental than physical.
Whether you're playing the slots in Vegas or guessing the number of jellybeans in a jar at a church fair, there's something that draws people to taking a shot in the dark. So let your Super Bowl party guests have a little fun trying to predict the results of the big game. Allow them to make guesses (wild or educated) on such things as:
- Who will be the MVP?
- Which player will score the most points?
- Which team will have the most interceptions?
- How many total yards will be accumulated?
- Will the singer of the national anthem perform live or lip sync?
- What will be the final score?
Make sure all partygoers have submitted their guesses before the game. After it's over, go through the answer cards to see who the winners are. (And in cases where there are no winners, see who had the closest guess.) Be sure to have small prizes on hand for the winners. Anything from a football trivia book to a team mug will be appropriate and affordable.
Keep reading for another competitive idea.
We've all seen cook-offs on TV. Some of us may have even visited or participated in them before. During these culinary competitions, cooks approach the contest with the dedicated practice and aggressive spirit of an athlete. This mindset, along with the festive, food-oriented spirit of the football championship, makes Super Bowl Sunday the perfect setting for a pre-game cook-off.
A Super Bowl party cook-off does take a fair amount of planning and coordination. First, you'll want to establish what type of cook-off you want to have. Do you want a competition of just one type of food -- say, ribs? Or do you want each person to prepare his or her specialty and then have a "best-in-show" winner?
Secondly, you'll need to figure out if you have the space, time and supplies to have your guests cook at your house or if you'll need them to prepare their dishes ahead of time. Of course, you know what they say about too many cooks in the kitchen: It might be best for all involved if you have each person prepare his or her food before arriving.
Once the results are in (you can have your guests rate each dish other than their own on a numerical scale of 1 to 5), you can reward your cook-off champion with a gift certificate to a local wings restaurant or sports bar. The reward for everyone else will be the delicious party spread.
The next game suggestion is sure to bring a lot of laughter to your party.
You know the drill. Just before the game, a popular singer stands before a silent, reverent crowd and sings the national anthem. It's powerful, beautiful and tear-inducing. But, likely, it isn't live. The singer, possibly doubting his or her capacity to hit difficult notes before a crowd of millions, lip syncs over a pre-recorded track. The halftime performers usually aren't much more reliable at singing live. So, in the tradition of lip-syncing performances good and bad, host your own lip-syncing contest. We promise hilarity will ensue.
For this fun activity, simply dock your iPod and have your guests perform their own renditions of the songs while lip-syncing the lyrics. For extra fun, encourage the partygoers to plan their acts ahead of time -- including choreography and costuming.
Your lip-syncing friends can choose any song they want, or they can recreate performances from Super Bowls past. Focus less on the technical aspects of the performances and more on the fun.
Our top Super Bowl game is coming up next.
If some of your guests are serious football devotees -- or at least claim to be -- put them to the test with some Super Bowl trivia. This is a game for hardcore football fans. At halftime or before the game, quiz your guests on Super Bowl factoids. The questions can be simple (Who won last year's Super Bowl?), intermediate (Which team has the most titles?) and difficult (Which teams have never been to the Super Bowl?).
Be sure to keep score. The person with the most correct answers is your Super Bowl trivia winner. For this Super Bowl scholar, a special honor is deserved. The perfect prize might include a team sweatshirt or the John Madden video game -- sure to please any football fanatic.
Now that you have your Super Bowl party games planned out, learn lots more about other football facts and the Super Bowl in the next section.
Three of the NFL's longest field goals were kicked in Denver's Mile High Stadium. HowStuffWorks breaks down the physics behind the phenomenon.
- Evite.com. "Super Bowl Party Ideas." (Sept. 24, 2010)http://www.evite.com/app/cms/ideas/super-bowl
- Segal, Andrew. "Top 10 Memorable Super Bowl Games." AskMen.com. (Sept. 24, 2010)http://www.askmen.com/top_10/fitness/30_fitness_list.html
- U.S. Department of Agriculture. "USDA Offers Food Safety Advice for Your Super Bowl Party." Jan. 27, 2006. (Sept. 24, 2010)http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/NR_012706_01/index.asp