Weekend Forecast: Garden Party with a Chance of Cornhole

By 3 m read
Cornhole - More practice needed…. (Photo by Erich Boenzli)
More practice needed…. (Photo by Erich Boenzli)

We obviously love having family and friends over, cooking and drinking together, and discussing everything that doesn’t matter and wouldn’t make sense to an eavesdropper. 

 

But there’s one serious part to this: Cornhole. The game. It starts out fun and can end up vicious. Be prepared. 

Cornhole - Going for a swish (Photo by Erich Boenzli)
Going for a swish (Photo by Erich Boenzli)

Having a couple cornhole boards out along the outdoor dinner table is the perfect icebreaker when inviting a group of people who don’t know each other well. Just wait and see.

 

Equipment

But before getting into the game, we either have to buy the boards and bags or make them. Buying is not cheap…a set of boards and bags will set you back $120+. Luckily, they’re relatively simple to build and you’ll probably find at least some of the needed wood in your scrap pile. And best of all, you can let out your inner artist and design and paint the surface to whatever floats your “bag.” The really important part is to use the correct paint (semi-gloss exterior latex paint). You want the bags to slide, but not too much.

 

How to Build a Cornhole Board

Here are instructions from diynetwork.com on how to build a regulation cornhole set.

 

Setup and Game Rules

The first time I came across this game, it made my think of a popular game in Switzerland: Ice curling. Except there’s no ice and no brooms. But the strategy used to get the most points is somewhat similar. Either get it in the center (hole), block the center (hole) or use your stone (bag) to push your opponent off the field (board). 

 

After playing for a few months, I actually got curious about the official rules. Sure enough, there’s the ACA, the American Cornhole Association. And there are a lot of rules. Here’s a list for the curious.

Cornhole - Handy “measuring tape” made out of scrap wood and string (Photo by Erich Boenzli)
Handy “measuring tape” made out of scrap wood and string (Photo by Erich Boenzli)

One of the rules that we follow exactly is that the front of the boards are 27 ft apart. So every time you play, the distance to the hole remains the same. But who wants to take out a measuring tape every time you set up the boards?

Cornhole - Unroll the “tape” from the board it’s attached to (Photo by Erich Boenzli)
Unroll the “tape” from the board it’s attached to (Photo by Erich Boenzli)

Wait, how about a “built-in” measuring tape? This is what I came up with: Get a piece of scrap wood, cut an indent on either side and attach a rope that comes to 27 ft (including the wood piece). There you go, you’re welcome. 

Cornhole - And place the front of the second board where it ends (Photo by Erich Boenzli)
And place the front of the second board where it ends (Photo by Erich Boenzli)

Otherwise, keep it simple. Traditionally, the game is played to whoever reaches or exceeds 21 points first. But this can turn a quick game with friends into a drawn out affair, where even the beer can get warm in the meantime. 

 

And if you have lots of folks that want to play, you want to keep moving teams. How? Just play to 11 points instead.

 

When you win, a celebration dance is okay, but don’t get hit with an excessive celebration penalty…

 

What do you call a bag that hits the grass first before getting on the board? It’s called a grasshopper 🙂

 

Cornhole Glossary

http://www.tossthebag.com/cornhole-glossary/

 

Accessories

Ok, so the cornhole boards are built, but you still can’t play without regulation bags. There are two options here: You can make the bags yourself at home or you can purchase a set of eight. As they’re pretty inexpensive and will last for several years, we’ve decided to purchase ours.

 

So get out there, buy or build a cornhole set, and your backyard garden parties will never be the same again! Get creative and paint a piece of wood with chalkboard paint to make a score tower.

Cornhole - Our score tower (Photo by Erich Boenzli)
Our score tower (Photo by Erich Boenzli)

Make a drink holder stand, etc. There are even “hole lights” to keep playing after the sun goes down.

 

Have fun!

 

Have you played cornhole? Let us know in the comments below!

Do your friends enjoy fun games too? Share this article with them and let us know what you all think by commenting below!

Tag your photos with #maplewoodroad on social media and share them on our Facebook page! Have any questions about this recipe? Ask on our Maplewood Road Community Facebook page and I’ll be happy to help. 😊

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter for more great articles!

 

What do you think?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

No Comments Yet.