Chuck-o Pro Review
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Players: 2+
Playing Time: About an hour (unless you have better aim than I do)

Now that summer’s just around the corner—and the weather’s getting warmer—it’s time to get up from the dining room table and take your game-playing outside. Sure, you can always play your favorite board games around the table on your patio—but now’s the perfect time to break out a fun outdoor game, like Chuck-o Pro.

Chuck-o Pro is a simple game that’s somewhat reminiscent of the horseshoes that my dad and uncles used to throw around—but instead of heavy metal horseshoes, you throw light, squishy beanbags. Inside the handy carrying case are two folding boards (each of which folds out to look like a ramp with a hole toward the end), eight beanbags (four each of two colors), and an official measuring rope (for easy setup). To set up, all you need to do is place the boards 27 feet apart (I recommend placing them closer together if playing with younger kids), and you’re ready to go.

To play, players stand next to one of the boards and take turns throwing their beanbags across the yard at the other board. If you can get your beanbag to stay on the board (without touching the ground), you get a point. If you manage to get your beanbag in the hole, you get three points. After both teams have thrown all four of their beanbags, the team with the most points keeps the difference. For instance, if one team got three points and the other team got one, the first team ends the round with two points, and the second team gets none. The first team to reach 21 points wins the game.

It may sound easy enough, but after your first toss you’ll realize that Chuck-o Pro is actually quite challenging. Twenty-seven feet is pretty far away—and you’ll need to give your beanbags a little muscle to get them to the board. Then, once your beanbag reaches the board, it’s even more of a trick to get it to stay there. That’s what makes the game challenging—and fun. You’ll find yourself trying all kinds of different techniques and strategies to get your beanbags in the hole—and you’ll most likely look pretty funny while you’re doing it. As it turns out, my husband and I were pretty horrible at this game—and we were beginning to worry that we’d be playing well into next week—but we had a blast playing it anyway (even though it sent the neighbor’s dogs into a barking frenzy).

Chuck-o Pro is a great way to get the family to spend some time together this summer—and you might just get a little bit of exercise in the process. Keep it in your trunk—right next to your picnic blanket—and you’ll always be ready for an impromptu game in the park.

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