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My kids have a lot of fun with their Nerf guns, but the fun wears thin when they start aiming at me. That’s why I give them everything they need to set up a target range…outside!
Why waste money on battery operated Nerf target games when you can let the kids use their imagination and build their own shooting range?
Unfortunately, you can’t use regular paper bulls-eye targets for Nerf guns, since soft play darts don’t actually stick to anything. Yes, we did have some suction cup darts once upon a time…but they won’t stick to paper. They do stick nicely to TV screens and closet mirrors!
Instead, give the kids something to knock down with their darts, like a pyramid of plastic cups. It’s just like a DIY carnival shooting game!
Red Solo type plastic cups are perfect targets–they’re light weight and they knock down easily. (They also come in way more colors than just red!) Stack the cups in a pyramid shape as tall as you like. Or set them in a row and see how many you can hit.
When you’re done, just nest the cups inside each other and stash them away for another day of play! And yes, keep them separate from the cups you use for actual beverages…
Since the targets are plastic cups, it’s also fine to play this game indoors. Just make sure you set the target up by a wall so the kids aren’t searching for their darts all day.
Recycle Those Toddler Bowling Pins
Another great Nerf target are plastic bowling pins! We found this out one summer when we set up bowling for Mitch when he was a preschooler and big brother was super into Nerf. Maybe you still have a set around the house?
This is also a great game to play with kids of different ages! My two boys are eight years apart, so it’s hard to find things they both like to do together. Shooting Nerf guns is something that big brother will NEVER get tired of doing, and something he doesn’t mind sharing with his little brother.
A Word on Nerf Gun Storage
Let’s pause a moment and admire this brilliant Nerf armory that you can make for about $50 and one afternoon.
Make it a Nerf Party Game
The Nerf shooting range is also a great game for play dates and parties. You don’t have to worry about splitting your guests into teams, or anyone feeling picked on–which is likely if you let the kids play war with the guns. You can even hand out prizes for best shot, fastest reload time, farthest strike and whatever else you can dream up!