Hoop Canyon is another classic that can be modified multiple ways to best fit your crew as well as your venue. Overall, the concept is simple. Hang one giant hoop from the roof, have a few people from each team fight over beach balls in the centre of the arena and pass them to their shooter, who then shoots them through the hoop. Using rounds of same gender and similar age groups helps break up the game and keep it safer.

What makes a game like awesome this is the ‘finesse’. Conceptually there is not a lot to this game, but adding finesse, though it takes a little more effort, results in memories that stick with youth far beyond a night.

This is what they did at One Youth, a youth ministry in Melbourne, Australia, to take this game to the next level.

MAKING THE HOOP

Two lengths of irrigation pipe are cut to size to foam the two hoops needed for the net, one smaller than the other to form the top and bottom. There was an off cut of pipe which they attached to the longer length of pipe for a little bit of extra length.

Once you are happy with the size, weave the longer pipe through the top of the mesh. Once the mesh stretches all the way down the pipe, trim the mesh to size.

They then used small lengths of dowel to hold the hoop together and used small nails to hold it in place. Make sure you feed the netting onto the pipe before you close the loop.

Repeat the process with the small hoop. The net will be bunched up a little more due to the smaller size but this is all good.

Once you are done, simply zip-tie the two ends of the mesh together and (after chatting to your tech guy) work out the best way to hang it from the roof.

MAKING THE SHOOTING PLATFORM

The next element is the shooting platform. You could just zone off a shooting zone with danger tape, but in the spirit of finesse, elevating the shooters creates an epic feel. Sturdy tables with some added decoration could work or if you have access to materials, and are confident in your construction skills, you could puttogether a platform like One Youth created out of recycled wood.

CREATING THE ARENA

Finally, you need to put together the arena. Under the hoop you will want to add some obstacles like a pile of crash mats, mattresses, foam or even kiddy pools filled with spaghetti if you are game enough; really anything that makes it more difficult for those fighting over the beach balls and more entertaining to watch. The crew at One Youth used a large mat, some mattresses around the outside and piled up some foam off cuts to add to the epicness.

THE END RESULT

The result looked awesome! Remember, add your own flavour and finesse, it is what takes a simple game to the next level!

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