How would you like to grab a rainbow and then catch a cloud? That’s what this wooden ring toss game lets you do. With two crossed “rainbow” sticks, you can launch your cloud ring into the air and catch it—or invite a friend and have twice as much fun!
Unlike most ring toss games, you start by holding the two sticks and place the ring over them. When you quickly uncross the sticks, it slides the ring to the ends of the sticks, tossing it in the air. Then you can use the sticks to catch the cloud ring!
This outdoor tossing game comes from an activity that children played in the early 1800s, called Game of Graces. The idea then was to toss the ring back and forth without moving around too much (while always looking graceful!).
You should feel free to move around as much as you like while playing. Leap while you launch the cloud, dance while it’s flying, or dash to catch it!
Ready to get started? Let’s paint a cloud and some rainbows!
what you need:
- 7-inch Embroidery Hoop
- 2 Wooden Slats or Dowel Rods Per Person
- A Rainbow of Acrylic Paint + White
- Top Coat / Sealer
- Paint Brushes
NOTE: We used a 7-inch hoop and wooden slats because they were on hand and the size worked well together. You can use two long rulers, smooth wooden sticks, or even pencils for this. The smaller your sticks are, the smaller the hoop will need to be, so be sure to test the game before you start the project.
Separate the two pieces of the embroidery hoop. You’ll only need the solid (inside) ring for the game, so set aside the outside piece.
Paint the hoop white. Add a few coats so the wood doesn’t show through. You can paint the entire hoop, inside and out, but the inside may scratch up a bit as you play the game.
Paint rainbow stripes on the wooden slats or sticks. If you like precision, use tape to mask off the lines as you paint. You can also just paint semi-straight lines like you see here!
For slats, be sure to paint your rainbow on both sides.
To play, place the two rainbow sticks inside the hoop and cross them. Quickly uncross the sticks and the cloud ring will fly!
It takes some practice to get it to fly in the direction and distance you’re hoping for, but that’s part of the fun.
If you make one set of rainbow sticks you can play on your own, but if you may several sets you can play with others! You’ll still only need one hoop.
Since this is based on a very old game called Game of Graces, we asked Grace to help show how it works when you play catch on your own.
For the solo version, be sure to launch the hoop over your head to not too far in front of you. Watch out so it doesn’t land on your head! Then use one or both of the rainbow sticks to catch the cloud.
When you’re playing outside you can make it a challenge to see how high you can toss it and still catch it or how far you can toss it to a friend and they can still catch it!