Here's How To Throw Your Own Winter Olympics At Home
Let the games begin ... in your living room!
Margo Gothelf and Sarah Burns
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The next Winter Olympics will kick off February 4, 2022 in Beijing, and while that’s still a year away, that doesn’t mean the games have to wait. Gather the family and create your own version of the Winter Olympics right in your house! Pair off in teams or compete as an individual for that coveted gold medal. Good luck!
Let the games begin ... with an official Opening Ceremony! Let each team parade through the house proudly bearing their flag — either a national flag, a creative team flag, or a family flag you create together. Use poster board or colored fabric for your flag’s base, and decorate your flag with markers, felt cut-outs, or pictures. Add elements that show your family’s culture and traditions, symbols that represent your family, or just stick to fun designs. Feel free to be creative!
Once you’ve got your family flag, it’s time to make the official flag for the Olympic games. To make the flag, use a white felt square cutout and round colored circles for the rings. Once the felt pieces are dry, glue on a handle so you can wave the flag around in the arena. Get full instruction for the felt Olympic flag over on Little Passport’s website.
Light the Torch
Oh My Creative
With the flags ready to go, hit play on the “Olympic Fanfare & Theme Song” and begin your parade. Take a few laps around the living and wave to the crowd. After you’ve been introduced, take your seats and get ready to watch the torch lighting!
The torch symbolizes the true start of the Olympic games. To make your own torch, head on over to Oh My Creative’s blog where you can learn how to make a customized Olympic torch using tissue paper, a cardboard roll, and tea lights. If you want to get in the true spirit of the games, check out the Olympic Channel on YouTube to see a full compilation of torch lightings from the Opening Ceremony over the years.
For your indoor at-home Olympic games, put a little spin on classic Olympic events. Depending on the event, you can split the family into teams or play one-on-one. Assign each event a point value depending on the difficulty. In the end, whoever has the most points wins the coveted gold medal!
The first event: Ice hockey — but this time, it's indoor balloon ice hockey! Split the family into two teams and find a place in the house that is fairly spacious. Use cardboard gift wrap tubes or pool noodles as "hockey sticks," and blow up a balloon to use as the “puck.” Set a goal at either end of the room, and see which team can score the most points! Check out Creative Connections For Kids to see their version of indoor balloon hockey.
Since you’re already at the ice rink (wink, wink), you might as well keep those skates on and head over to the "indoor skating" competition. Put on your slippiest socks, designate a smooth surface as your performance arena (kitchen tiles, hardwood planks, or a smooth basement floor should do nicely), and pick your favorite song to choreograph a routine to, complete with twirls, leaps, and jumps. Pick judges and break into pairs or compete as an individual. The skater with the highest score takes the points for this round!
Following the ice skating, head on over to the curling arena. This tabletop version of curling might not look like the set up in the Olympics, but it's just as fun. Split back into teams and see who can master sliding the stones into the target to take the win.
Passion for Savings
Remember: For your own family version of the Winter Olympic games, you don't have to limit yourselves to the same winter sports events that make up the "official" Olympics. Any of your crew's favorite indoor games is fair game! For more ideas for Indoor Olympic events, check out glow-in-the-dark bowling, this indoor obstacle course, or even these minute-to-win-it style games. Or you can stick to actual indoor sports with this Franklin Sports 3-In-1 Indoor Sports Set.
Refuel With Food
After all of the events, your team of athletes is sure to have worked up an appetite. Since this is the Winter Olympics, pick cuisines from the countries that will host the next winter games. Snack on tasty dumplings and steamed buns from 2022 host city Beijing, China, or pizza and fresh pasta to represent the 2026 Olympic games, which will be held in the cities of Milan and Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy.
Award the Gold, Silver, and Bronze
Create Art With Me
Now that the games are coming to a close, it’s time to wrap up with a medal ceremony. Instead of just giving everyone a plastic medal, make your own. There are many ways to make homemade medals. This DIY tutorial uses jar lids, foam stickers, and a whole lot of glitter to create a shiny piece of hardware. If you don’t want glitter on your medals, check out this tutorial from Create Art With Me. The craft uses air dry clay to personalize the medals for first, second, and third place.
For the medal ceremony itself, stack different sized chairs or cardboard boxes to make a tiered medal stand. Before you hand out the medals, ask each participant to pick a song to receive their medal, which can stand in their official national anthem.
Now that the games are coming to a close, it’s time for the official closing ceremony. To celebrate the end of the indoor games, have everyone enter the living room arena all at once. Relive the highlights of the events and celebrate the closing ceremony with a big dance party.
If you are not ready for the games to fully end, head over to the Olympic Channel’s YouTube channel. The page is full of highlights and special interviews from previous Olympic games, both summer and winter.