Economic woes are challenging families to find inexpensive entertainment options. Others are looking to get away from electronic gizmos and reconnect. For many, an old-fashioned family game night is the answer.
A recent survey commissioned by Hasbro found that 48 percent of Americans believe game nights are the best type of family bonding.
"Now that school is out,'' said Julie Livingston with the Toy Industry Association, "it's a great time to make a date with family members and kids'' to play games.''
Livingston advises "making it a regular part of your routine on a Friday or Saturday evening'' to get the most enthusiasm and participation from the entire family.
Games solidify relationships and create special memories, she says. Games also are an ideal way to get different generations together.
Some tips for making family game night a success, from Kit Bennett at amazingmoms.com:Be consistent. Purchase a few games Give the kids a 30-minute reminder No interruptions
- For ideas for getting started, visit Hasbro.com.
- Pick a game from this list of reviews, which evaluates each game for its design to provide equal opportunity for winning, clear rules and tempo to keep everyone involved. Prices and age ranges are also included. Check out Piraten Pitt and Eureka!
- boardgamegeek.com and funagain.com offer reviews on games suitable for family game night.
- icandothatgames.com lists games that boost a child's self-confidence by providing opportunities to discover what they can do on their own. Favorite Dr. Seuss and Curious George characters challenge kids to run, slide, hide and seek, explore and more: "Cat in the Hat … I Can Do That!''; "The Grinch…Sing Your Heart Out!''; and "Curious George … ide and Seek Zoo.''
- endlessgames.com: Updates classic games with modern-day twists, including versions of Password, The Price is Right, Family Feud, Tic Tac Toe and X-ceter-o.
- blueorangegames: Prides itself for being environmentally conscious, planting two trees for every one used to create their games. Try Gobblet Junior and Bendomino.