Oh how I LOVE summer! There is always something to do and fun to be had. Zoo visits, amusement parks, summer barbecues, family reunions, holiday events, sporting tournaments, vacations, and on and on. One great thing about summer is that you don’t have to spend a lot of money to have fun. Our favorite summertime activities include going for walks around the lake, going to the free community concerts, visiting splash pads, and going fishing. One of my boys’ favorite summertime activities, though, is having fun on our homemade slip-n-slide. We learned how to make them a few years back and have been sliding our summers away ever since. Here’s how to make your own slip-n-slide for TONS of summer fun!
Step 1: Buy Heavy Duty Plastic Sheeting
I recommend a basic blue tarp or heavy duty plastic sheeting that can be found at any home improvement store or here on Amazon. You’ll want to buy one that’s long enough for a good slide. I recommend a sheet or tarp that’s 100 feet long. That way you’ll be sure to have as much as you can possible want but you can fold it if you don’t need all 100 feet.
Step 2: Find A Place To Lay Your Sheeting
Choosing where to lay your slip-n-slide can be as simple as laying it out in your front or back yard or doing some neighborhood scouting. For younger children, your own yard will be more than perfect to make them happy but as your kids age, they’ll want to find locations nearby with at least a bit of a slope. One thing to keep in mind when looking for a sliding location is that you’ll need to be near a park or somewhere where you have access to a hose nozzle for the water.
Step 3: Lay Your Sheeting
When it comes time to actually laying your tarp, simply roll it out and lay it down. Some people recommend securing the edges of their slip-n-slide down with stakes, but it’s always made me nervous to have my boys sliding over metal objects with pointed ends. We just leave our tarp/sheeting loose on the edges, and, really, it’s not that big of a deal to keep straightening it out as your kids do down the slide. If you do want to stake the edges down though, here’s a great DIY tutorial on how to do so. They even show you how to make bumpers out of pool noodles.
Step 4: Adding The “Slip”
When we made our first slip-n-slide, I failed to realize that water isn’t enough by itself to make the “slip” in slip-n-slide. My poor boys were only sliding a few feet before they’d stop with red all over their tummies. I felt so bad! With a little more research, I learned that squeezing some dish soap or shampoo on the tarp is all you need to lube things up a bit. We usually go through a bottle of Dawn or dollar store shampoo every time we pull the slide out. My boys always smell so clean after the’ve played on the slip-n-slide and like to joke by saying that they’ve had their shower for the entire week. Yeah. Right!
Step 5: Spray Water
You made sure to find a sliding location near a hose nozzle, right? (Go back and read step 2 if not). All you need to do after your tarp is laid and slicked with dish soap is attach your hose to a nozzle, turn the water on, and spray it on the tarp.
Step 6: HAVE FUN!
You did it! You made your very own slip-n-slide in 5 easy steps. It was super easy and super worth it, wasn’t it? One thing we do for some extra fun is to play slip-n-slide bowling. I purchased some inflatable bowling pins but we started out our first years by just using empty plastic bottles. You can also go down the slide on boogie boards or inner tubes. Now, what are you waiting for?! Stop reading, back away slowly from your computer, and go have fun with your kids!