What is a Bean Bag Toss?

B. Miller
B. Miller
A cardboard box can be used to create a bean bag toss game.
A cardboard box can be used to create a bean bag toss game.

A bean bag toss is a simple game played with bean bags. The bean bags are thrown at a board, made of cardboard or wood, with at least one hole cut out of it, but usually more. The object of the game is to stand back a short distance and get the bean bag through the hole. If there is more than one hole, the holes may be of various sizes, making it more difficult to throw the bean bag through a particular hole. More points might be awarded, then, for getting the bean bag through one of the smaller holes.

Bean bag toss games can be purchased in most toy stores or party stores, and are a great idea to have at a kids' party. These games can keep kids busy for hours and are very inexpensive. It is also possible to make your own bean bag toss game.

Searching online will bring up instructions on how to make a bean bag toss game from plywood, and if you need an especially sturdy game, that might be a good idea. However, if you do not have woodcutting tools available or are looking for an easier way, using a large cardboard box is a better option. You can cut different sized holes in the box, decorate the box with colored paper, cloth or stickers, and note the point value for each hole underneath it.

You don't have to do this project alone. Kids will love to help make a bean bag toss game, and once you've safely cut the holes out of the box, kids can decorate it as much as they want. Making the bean bags takes a bit more time, but it is a fairly quick process to sew the bags.

Four to five inches (10 to 12 cm) square bean bags are a good size. Each bean bag will require two pieces of square fabric. Lay them on top of each other, pin and sew three sides, and fill the bean bag with fiberfill, dry beans or dry peas. You can then sew the remaining side. Keep in mind that you will need to make more than one bean bag for the game, so you will need to plan accordingly for fabric.

If you are feeling creative, bean bags do not have to be square. You can make the bean bags any shape you want. A circle shape or a fun shape like a star are also good shapes for games.

Discussion Comments


When I was younger I remember playing the cornhole bean bag toss, but from my travels that name seems to be pretty isolated to the Chicago area. All of the boards I saw when I was younger had the White Sox logo painted on the boards you would toss the bean bags into.

The funny thing was, it was usually older people playing the bean bag toss. It was a popular tailgate party activity. People would hang around, drink their beers and play with their bean bags. I suppose you do whatever you can to stave off boredom. It always was fun.


@drtroubles - If you are just setting up for a simple game you can always use a large piece of cardboard to create your bean bag toss boards. All you need to do is paint whatever design you want on it and use a utility knife to cut out the holes. After you have that done just prop up the cardboard against a crate and your game is ready to go.

There are also some inexpensive bean bag toss sets that you can purchase from game stores. If your kids really like the game it might be a good idea just to buy one of the plastic boards. They are easy to care for and do the job well.


Can any one advise me on the easiest way to make a bean bag toss board for an outdoor bean bag toss?

My kids are going to be a having a birthday party soon and we are trying to think of a few different outdoor games we can have and I know my son liked the bean bag toss we tried at the fair. I think it would be nice to have our own bean bag toss set up for his party. I am not really a good carpenter but I am certainly willing to try if the bean bag toss plans are simple enough. I am sure I can manage.

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    • A cardboard box can be used to create a bean bag toss game.
      By: Elenathewise
      A cardboard box can be used to create a bean bag toss game.