Lawn darts are a four-person game that combines darts and horseshoe pitching. During gameplay, players throw giant metal darts at a target or hoop.
During the 1970s, lawn darts were all the rage. Known as Jarts or lawn darts (depending on the brand), they were 12 inches long with heavy metal tips on one end and decorative plastic fins on the other for flight stability. They were used in a four-person game, a cross between darts and horseshoes. Players would set up two plastic rings thirty feet apart and split into teams. The objective was to throw the dart into a ring, with the first team to get three points winning. The closest non-bullseye landings would also earn a point.
Originally used as a war weapon, toy manufacturers repurposed lawn darts into a family game in the 1950s. They became prevalent over the next decade, but it wasn’t long before the dark side of the game reared its ugly, pierced head. Lawn dart injuries were common and often severe, with children most affected.
The versatile nature of the game means it can be played by one person or with teams. The standard gameplay involves throwing the darts at a large target that is set up about 30 feet away. Points are scored when the darts land inside the scoring ring. If players from opposing teams both throw their darts in the ring, the points cancel each other out.
If you’re willing to find the right vendor today, you can still purchase lawn darts for sale in the U.S. (though it’s a bit more challenging to find them in stores). This popular outdoor game can be safely enjoyed if you mark a throwing line several yards away from the target with a rope or some other marker that players aren’t allowed to cross while playing.
Lawn darts, or Jarts, were a recreational game that crossed darts and horseshoes and could be played one-on-one or in two teams. They consisted of large, metal darts with plastic fins thrown at a target (typically a plastic hoop) placed 30 feet away.
Lawn darts were popular in the late ’70s and early ’80s. Unfortunately, they weren’t without their risks. The tragedy prompted the family to lobby to ban lawn darts, and a year later, the Consumer Product Safety Commission banned them in the United States. Canada followed suit the following year, citing more than 6,100 lawn dart-related injuries over the previous eight years.
In a time when electronic entertainment is all the rage, original lawn darts are a great way to encourage kids and adults to get outside and spend quality time together. The set includes four colorful, kid-friendly darts and two target rings that glow in the dark. Players take turns tossing their darts at the targets, and the first team or player to score 21 points wins.
Fun for the Whole Family
Lawn darts are a fun way to spend quality time with your family. They are a great alternative to smartphone games and can encourage kids, teenagers, and adults alike to move around and bond differently. They are also perfect for graduation parties, birthdays, or any other celebration where everyone will spend much time together and want to do something fun that isn’t glued to their phones.
The game is easy to learn and doesn’t require a lot of equipment. All you need is a set of lawn darts and a boundary marker, such as an old tire or a line drawn in the grass. Once you’ve decided on a boundary marker, players or teams take turns throwing their darts at it from a predetermined distance away.
While the game started as a dangerous bar game, it has since evolved into a safe, family-friendly outdoor game.
Easy to learn
When lawn darts, or Jarts, were the rage in American backyard barbecues, players would toss the weighted metal spikes into the air and try to stick them into a plastic target hoop positioned some distance away. A bullseye in the hoop earned a player three points, and the closest non-bullseye landings scored one point. The game, reminiscent of team horseshoes, was a great way to spend the afternoon in the summer sun with friends.
In 1988 the Consumer Product Safety Commission banned lawn darts in the United States. Since then, the only way to legally purchase them has been to buy a set that is marketed to adults as a game of skill and comes with warning labels. But despite the legal prohibition, the cult of adult jarts enthusiasts has kept up the tradition and continues to play with this once-ubiquitous outdoor missile game.
Learning lawn darts is an excellent way to connect with family members and friends in a fun, outdoorsy activity. This game can be played by anyone, regardless of age or skill level, as long as there are at least two players. It involves physical activity, making it a great way to enhance both mental and physical well-being. However, specific rules and regulations must be followed to play this game safely.