By Shayn Satten, “Teen Entertainment Specialist”
With the Holiday Season right around the corner we look for ways to entertain both kids and adults at small family events and social gatherings. We have a wealth of resources at our disposal and we use a combination of music and games to pass the time.
I wanted to go over a simple technique that I use to create interaction between kids and adults and keep them entertained anywhere between 25 and 45 minutes. As DJs, we know that running interactive games and getting involved in the event really highlights us as professional entertainers and separates us from the iPod DJs.
All you require are one to two hula-hoops and you have your time diversion ready to go. One of my favorite games that I call Loop-Da-Hoop.
To start, you gather all the kids on the dance floor for a unique team contest. You put them on the center of your dance floor and have them form a circle facing inward. I personally recommend inward so they can enjoy seeing their friends reactions during the game, however, it may be more challenging if they face outward, but I have never tried. Then, you open the circle and put a hula hoop on one of the player’s shoulders. The object of the game is to get the hula-hoop to move around the circle without letting go of each other’s hands and make 1 to 3 laps around the circle. Depending on how large your group is, will allow you to determine the amount. If you have enough kids, you can make two circles and actually have each team race around the circles.
Now, how do you get the adults involved? You simply tell your group of players to go out and grab one adult to play with them in the game. It helps if you challenge the adults and point out that they should show off their youthful spirits. Now you have doubled your participation and drawn out your game. Now you repeat the above process. To make it more interesting you can then split them into teams of adults vs. kids and have them compete. Overall, it can create a lot of commotion and turn you into a legendary entertainer with powers beyond simply playing music. However, the fun doesn’t stop there.
You are stuck with a pumped up crowd on the dance floor. So what do you do? Get them dancing with a game I call Hula-Potato.
To start Hula-Potato, you keep everyone on the dance floor with their hands connected still. Now you play some fun dancing music and say that if you don’t have a hula-hoop you must be dancing or you are out. Now the fun begins! When the music stops whoever is left with a hoop is out! If you have a big group, sometimes it helps to put two hoops into the circle at opposite sides to keep more people busy and increase the odds and risk of getting out. At the end, you can hand out a simple prize of your choice or say the winner gets first crack at the desert table!
If you have performed these games to the best of your ability, then you have just knocked off a good half hour to an hour of your party and kept everyone entertained and on the dance floor. I just recommend keeping your fingers crossed and hoping they don’t ask to play again.