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Friday, June 3, 2011


So for Father's Day this year we made a Ladder Golf game for Mark.  Some people call it Bolo or Hillbilly Golf, but whatever you call it, it is a lot of fun!  Fawn wanted one too so we bothered the guys at Home Depot together.  Our shopping trip was fun though and we brought back the simple supplies.  Of course, poor Mark got roped into setting up the power tools and we had him drill the golf balls.  Fawn and I were both afraid we would have some seriously off center holes if we were to drill them.  We used the power hand saw though and team worked helped.  I was much better at the actual sawing and Fawn was great at setting up the clamps.

If you are looking for a fun project with the kids or a fun gift, this might be the gift for you this year.  You can follow the instructions below or just buy one on-line, I will provide a link for that too.

What you need to make ladders
• 44 feet of 3/4" PVC pipe ( or 1" PVC)  buy 5, 10ft pieces
• 12 L connectors ‐ 3/4" elbows
• 12 T connectors ‐ 3/4" tees
• Saw or pipe cutter  (we used a hand power saw)
• PVC glue ( optional, we just glued the elbows and T's to the 2 foot pieces so they would not get lost, but the game can be taken apart for storage or travel.  Mark's will be camping a whole lot! )      
Cutting the PVC pieces
• Two rolls of duct tape in different colors (duct tape comes in some really cool shade these days!)
• Cut 14, 2ft pieces of PVC pipe
• Cut 16, 1ft pieces of PVC pipe
• Cuts can be made with the cutting device of your choice.   Hand saw, table saw, jig saw, etc.
• Rough edges from cuts can be lightly sanded, if you choose to, we didn't because we glued the elbows and T's to the ends of most of the pieces.

Assembling the PVC pieces
• Connect the cut pieces with the T and L (elbow) connectors
• The 2‐ft pipes will be used for the back footprint as well as the ladder rungs.  The front footprint doesn't need to be as long as the back because all the force is coming from the front. (A footprint is what is holding the game up)
• No need to use PVC glue. For tranport, it's easier to have the option of disassembly. Some people will glue everything together except for the base to ladder connection. That leaves to pieces of similar size, easy for hauling.  We glued on just the elbows and T's to the 2 foot pieces so we can break them down and take them places.
• Wrap the two foot pieces in duct tape, alternating the colors.  This helps protect the pipe from cracking if you have enthusiastic ball throwers!

How to make the Bolos  
• You will need 24 golf balls. MAKE SURE THAT THEY ARE SOLID CORE.  Paint or color in groups of 6.  We got big sharpie pens and colored them 4 different colors in groups of 6.  This allows for four players.  I have heard that some people use Rid dye on the  balls and rope, but the sharpies worked well for us.  Paint would not stick.  You can also buy balls in different colors, but they are generally a little more expensive.
• Drill a hole going through the center of each golf ball.
• You will need 12 ‐ 18inch pieces of nylon rope.
• Thread the rope through the holes that you previously drilled.
• Place a golf ball at each end of the rope.
• Tie a knot right in front of and behind the ball to hold it secure.
• Use a match or a lighter to slightly melt the knot. This will help the knot stay tied. If you made your holes a little big, you may want to wind the rope through the knot twice to make the knot a little bigger so that it won't pull back through the holes.

Now here are the rules:

Ladder Toss, Ladder golf, Bolo Toss, Polish Horseshoes, hillbilly horseshoes, Hillbilly golf, Redneck Golf, Ladder Ball, Monkey Balls, or Ladder Ball, is a lawn game for 2 to 4 people. The game is played by throwing a bolo, made of two golf balls connected with a rope, at a 3 rung ladder. Different rungs of the ladder are worth different amounts of points. The top rung is worth 3 points, the middle is worth 2, and the lower rung is worth one. The goal of the game is to get exactly (and not over) 21 points.

Top Rung = 3 Points
Middle Rung = 2 Points
Bottom Rung = 1 Points
Score is determined very similarly to Cornhole, where points cancel each other out. If you score on a rung and the other team or person scores on that same rung, the points are canceled.

Example: Team 1 puts 2 bolos on top rung, it is 6 points, but team 2 puts 1 bolo on the same rung, it cancels out 3 of the 6 points.
Play up to 21.

Alternate scoring variation:
All balls that land in the base of the ladder can be scored one. The first rung can be scored 2, second rung 3,
and top rung 4. This is helpful with younger players, and can help the game move along a little faster For the one-pointers landing in the base, only one ball must be inside the area. The exception to this is a shot that lands both balls on the outside of the frame with just the rope on the inside of the ladder area. This is the only shot that counts for a point without any ball inside the base area.

Game play
Set Up
• Place the Ladders 15 to 30 feet apart (Adjust the distance, accordingly. Shorter for younger players is fine)
• Each team will have 3 bolos. (different colors for each team)
• Players alternate throwing one bolo at a time until all 3 are tossed.
• Ladder Toss can be played with 2 people or in 2 teams of 2 or 4 individual players each with their own set.
** For two people, both stand at one end and toss the balls, then move to the other end for the next toss.
** If you are playing with 2 teams of 2, 1 person from each team will stand on each side.
** If playing individuals, just stand next to who you want to chat with!
Here are some sites I used that helped me and might give you ideas for other fun family games:

Here is a set you can just buy and wrap!  Honestly, it probably ends up costing about the same......we just had fun working together to do it......some of the time, lol.

Whatever you decide to do, have fun!  Sorry I have not posted in awhile.  I will get back to it!

As a side note, we played this until 9 last night.  Mark and I all by ourselves in the yard having so much fun.  If you know us, you know we had to be having fun if we were still outside and awake at 9 P.M.!