'Minute to Win It' Bouncer Game

poing pong balls
courtesy Flickr user https://www.flickr.com/photos/djromanj/

This Minute to Win It game is played in pairs. The team starts off with 20 pint glasses placed in a row on a table. Each person gets 10 ping pong balls. Working down the line, contestants must bounce one ping pong ball into each of the glasses in one minute or less.

The Goal

The ultimate goal of Bouncer is to end up with one ping pong ball in each of twenty pint glasses. While the game is technically played in pairs, each person is responsible for getting ten balls in ten glasses.

Equipment Needed

To play Bouncer you'll need:

  • 20 pint glasses
  • Lots of ping pong balls, divided into two buckets
  • A long table

How to Play

To set up the game, place the pint glasses in a line on the table, fairly close together. Divide the ping pong balls into two buckets, one for each player. Place the buckets of balls on either end of the row of glasses. Players begin by standing in front of these buckets, at either side of the table.

When the one minute timer begins, players grab their buckets and begin bouncing ping pong balls into the glasses. For a ball to count it must bounce once off the table, land in the glass, and stay in the glass. Players will be working from the outside glasses towards the middle, and each one must get a ball into ten glasses. Get one ball in each glass and you win the game.

The Rules

Here's what you need to keep in mind in order to adhere to the rules of Bouncer:

  • If a ball bounces more than once, it doesn't count - even if it ends up in the glass.
  • If a ball lands in a glass that is not in sequence (working down the row), it doesn't count.
  • If a ball lands in a glass and then bounces out, it doesn't count.
  • Each player may only hold and bounce one ball at a time. (You can't grab a handful of them and bounce them all, hoping for the best.)

Tips and Tricks

The key to mastering Bouncer is to get a feel for how hard you need to bounce the ping pong ball in order to get it to clear the lip of the glass and stay in there.

If you bounce it too softly it won't make it into the glass. On the other hand, using too much force will cause the ball to either miss the glass completely or bounce right back out once it hits the bottom of the cup.

Of course the best way to get an idea of the power needed behind each bounce is to practice!

Variations and Modifications

You can change this game in various ways for different age groups and seasonal themes.

Minute To Win It games are great for kids' parties, but most of the games should be simplified for younger players. Bouncer can be made a little easier in a number of ways, including:

  • Reduce the number of glasses used
  • Use pails or other containers with a wider opening
  • Skip the rules that don't allow multiple bounces and/or call for the glasses to be filled in sequence

Of course if you're playing this game with children, use plastic cups instead of glass ones. Weigh them down with some water or marbles before the game starts to avoid the cups falling over mid-game.

For a Christmas-themed Minute to Win It game, use holiday themed cups instead of the glasses. Use red ping pong balls, and change the name of the game to Rudolph Bounce.

Disposable cups or cheap plastic ones can be found at most party supply or dollar stores, so you can use these in various colors and with seasonal patterns to tweak this game for almost any occasion.

Then all you need to do is come up with a creative name for the game.