Social Events: Go Bananas!

Contributed by: Charlie Baker, Diocese of Auckland, 29 January 2013

A banana themed social event aimed at junior youth, ie 11-13 year olds. Timings given are approximate.

Banana Jokes

Kick off the night with banana jokes – the worse the better. We also told a banana joke in between each game, which they loved. For example:

  • How do you catch King Kong? Hang upside down and make a noise like a banana.
  • How can you tell the difference between a monster and a banana? Try picking it up. If you can’t, it’s either a monster or a giant banana.
  • Why did the banana go out with the prune? Because he couldn’t find a date.
  • They’re not going to grow bananas any longer. Really? Why not? Because they’re long enough already.
  • What’s yellow and writes? A ball-point banana.
  • What’s yellow and always points to the north? A magnetic banana.
  • Why did the man lose his job in a fruit packing firm? He kept throwing the bent bananas away.
  • Mother Banana: Why didn’t you go to school today? Little Banana: Because I didn’t peel well.
  • What would you call two banana skins? A pair of slippers.

Fruit Salad (10 mins)

Need: a chair/cushion for each player

A twist on the classic game of Fruit Salad. Sit in a circle, and make everyone either an apple, orange, pear or lemon. Start with one person in the middle of the circle – they call out the name of a fruit, and everyone who is that fruit has to swap seats. They can’t swap with the person next to them. The person in the middle must try to get one of their spaces, otherwise they remain in the middle. If they call out ‘Banana’ everyone has to swap seats.

Banana peel (5 mins)

Need: 3 bananas

An upfront game for 6 people/3 pairs. One person holds the banana still in the air, while the other person must peel the banana using only their mouth (hands held behind their backs). (Source: Adapted from thesource4ym.com)

Banana Dress-up (15mins)

Need: 1 banana per group of 4 + 1 creative kit per group containing: tape, scissors, felt/fabric scraps, foil, beads, coloured paper, pipe cleaners, coloured pins, etc.

Get into groups of 4. Each group is given a banana and a bag of random items. It’s better if each group gets different items for variety. They then are told to create a personality and appearance for their banana with the items they get. After 10 minutes, one volunteer from each group gets up and introduces their banana to the group. Award a prize to the best group. (Source: Adapted from thesource4ym.com)

Banana scavenger hunt (10-15mins)

Need: 1 banana per group, pens, worksheets with list of banana items

Send groups out to measure items in banana lengths, for example:

  • The height of the church’s road sign
  • the height of the front door
  • the length of a leader’s car
  • Height of a leader
  • length of the youth room sofa
  • width of the church hall
  • heights of all your team members
  • someone’s waist
  • the banana area of the youth room window (#bananas wide x #bananas high = banana area)

(Source: Adapted from thesource4ym.com)

Banana obstacle course (20 mins)

Need: 1 banana per pair, chairs, tables, cushions, cones, ladder, timers

Create an obstacle course using chairs, tables, ladder, cones, cushions etc. Get someone to demonstrate how to go through the course.

The catch – they have to complete the course in pairs, holding a peeled banana between them in their mouths, and maintaining contact with each other at all times. If they lose contact with each other and/or the banana they have to restart the course. If their banana breaks they are out. Hilarious! (Source: Youth Alpha Leaders Guide)

Where’s the Banana (10mins)

Need: 2 bananas

Form a circle with all players sitting on the floor. Choose one person to be “it”. Have them sit in the middle of the circle. It is important for the players to sit close together with their knees up and their hands tucked under their legs. “It” says “go!” and everyone begins passing the banana back and forth around the circle under their legs. The trick is for everyone to act like they have the banana and are passing it even when they really don’t. After a few seconds “it” says “stop!”. “It” then has to figure out where the banana is by guessing. If they guess correctly they can join the circle and the player with the banana goes to the middle. Otherwise they stay in the middle and do it again.

Banana Hockey (10mins)

Need: 4 bananas, ping pong ball, cones

Like the traditional youth group version of the game, but use bananas instead of sticks.

Banana splits (10-15 mins)

Need: bowls, spoons, sprinkles, icecreams, sauce, bananas, wafers etc

Create banana splits – could have a prize for the best creation, or just make, eat and enjoy!

 

For more banana ideas and inspiration for older teenagers see: http://thesource4ym.com/eventideas/Event.aspx?id=104