Although the Amish are famously hardworking, there are plenty of Amish games and activities that they enjoy regularly.
They live in close-knit communities and prioritize spending time with their loved ones. As a result, much of their leisure time is spent with one another.
Additionally, Amish people love the outdoors, so spend a lot of time outside. On colder days, you’re likely to find Amish people playing a variety of Amish games in their homes.
This article will delve into the most popular Amish activities and pastimes, as well as reveal the most common Amish games.
What this article covers:
Amish life doesn’t consist of all work and no play. Numerous fun Amish games are enjoyed by all the family. The Amish spend time playing popular, well-known games as well as ones they have created themselves.
Let's have a look in closer detail at the games that Amish people play and their originals.
The Amish are big fans of playing board games. This is because they promote teamwork and enable each other to spend time with their families.
It’s worth noting that the Amish never gamble during these games (or at all). Gambling goes against their lifestyle.
Some well-known board games are also popular Amish games including Monopoly, Chess, Scrabble, Life on the Farm, Trivial Pursuit, and Uno. More energetic games such as Charades and Pictionary are also favorites among the Amish.
Like the rest of the world, they prefer playing these games during the cold winter months while they snuggle up by the fire.
What is an Amish fireplace? An Amish fireplace is, in fact, simply an electric heater. It’s cleverly disguised to look like an old-fashioned fireplace to make it look enticing (and it works!)
Back to the Amish games, the Amish are skilled craftsmen and make their own wooden board games. They often make chinese checkers, mancala, chess, and tic-tac-toe game sets.
In the summer months, some Amish people enjoy playing different sports games. Many games that are popular across the US are also Amish favorites. Basketball, volleyball, softball, swimming, and hockey are common Amish games.
However, not all Amish people approve of this. Some Amish people believe that sports games are only for children, not for adults.
Croquet is one of the most popular Amish games in Lancaster county. Ping-pong tournaments are also arranged during the summer months. In addition, ice hockey and ice skating are also two activities that Amish people love.
Interestingly, card games are controversial in the Amish world. Some people believe it’s wrong to play with cards and it should be prohibited. Others enjoy playing without a worry in the world.
Games played with a standard deck of cards are considered unacceptable because of some of the symbols that are on the cards. The face cards and suits cause issues for some Amish people.
Plus, these are cards that are used in some gambling games, such as poker, and therefore are deemed inappropriate.
However, others don’t see any problem with card games (after all, they’re not gambling themselves). Some Amish people are fantastic, competitive card players. They especially shine when it comes to playing Rook.
Rook cards are similar to a standard deck of cards but with a few changes. The jack, queen, and king are replaced with the numbers 11, 12, and 13 and the ace card has been changed to the number 1. Instead of the regular suits (hearts, diamonds, spades, and clubs), there are four different colors to create four sets.
This version of playing has become so popular that some areas have Rook tournaments. The cards are sometimes referred to as “Christian cards” or “missionary cards”.
The Amish have lots of children. A typical family has an average of 7 children. But do the Amish adopt other children? Yes, if a couple cannot have children, they can adopt both Amish and non-Amish children.
So how do they keep them all entertained?
Some Amish children still play with traditional faceless Amish dolls, however, this is becoming less common. Amish girls play with dolls that have faces, as well as other toys. Boys play with trucks and other common toys.
The Amish also love trampolines and they’re a great way to keep their many children entertained. Plus, bikes, scooters, and trikes are well-loved among Amish children. Plus, it’s great for their parents because the little ones can run errands for them!
The Amish are talented at making homemade toys like wooden horses, cars, trucks, and building blocks.
What Do the Amish Do for Fun?
However, because they tend to keep to themselves, many people wonder “what do the Amish do in their spare time?” What do Amish people do for fun?
Let's have a look at some of the most popular Amish activities.
Sunday Night Singing
What do the Amish do on Sundays? The Amish attend church on Sunday mornings. On Sunday evenings, there is a special night planned for young people.
Amish people enjoy singing and even have a dedicated singing night for youngsters. Sunday Night Singing is a longstanding activity that has a double purpose. It's fun, and it's also a way for young people to meet potential partners.
Young people meet once every two weeks on Sunday evenings to sing hymns together. These hymns are usually more lively and expressive than the ones sung in church, which appeals to the younger audience.
After the singing, the young people mingle and light snacks are served, often in unique, homemade pie carriers.
Spending Time with Family and Friends
Family and community picnics are a popular Amish activity. The Amish lifestyle centers around family and their community. Plus, they love the outdoors, so this combines two key lifestyle elements.
Picnics are a great way for the community to get together in a relaxed, no-stress environment. Unsurprisingly, the Amish forbid the use of illegal substances, including marijuana. Their stress-relief stems from their commitment to simplicity and community.
Holidays and Birthday Celebrations
The Amish are Christians and therefore celebrate all of the Christian holidays. Moreover, they make cute Easter baskets to sell around this time of year.
Do the Amish celebrate birthdays? Yes, the Amish enjoy celebrating their birthdays but in a true Amish style. Celebrations are usually low-key, often observed at home with close friends and family members.
Like the rest of America, cakes and sweet treats often make an appearance. Thoughtful gifts are given and are usually practical. For example, the Amish like to give books as gifts.
Interestingly, it’s usually only children up to age 16 who celebrate their birthdays. Adult birthday celebrations are unheard of.
Camping and Being in the Outdoors
Amish people are very outdoorsy so naturally, they spend a lot of time outside. They typically work as farmers so spend most of the day outside on the farm. However, that’s not enough for the Amish.
During their spare time, they enjoy going camping with the whole family. Recently, it has become a common activity for family reunions. This is a reflection of their simple approach to life.
The Amish value simple living, plain dress, and being self-sufficient. This makes camping, fishing, and hunting the perfect pastimes for them.
Recently, Amish men have begun to arrange weekends away where they camp together and go hunting and fishing. These activities are a double-win for the Amish, as they provide enjoyment as well as being practical if they catch something.
Do Amish use mirrors? Because of their simple lifestyle, people sometimes wonder whether Amish people are allowed to use mirrors.
Yes, somewhat surprisingly, the Amish do use mirrors. Women use them when tying up their hair and placing it under their head covering. And men use mirrors for shaving. However, they do not permit the use of cameras so therefore don’t take or have their pictures taken.
As you can see, there's no shortage of Amish games and activities.
The Amish enjoy playing a variety of board games with their family and friends on rainy days. While some Amish people are excellent card players, others disapprove of this activity.
During the summer months, sports, picnics, and other outdoor activities are favorites among many Amish, although the practices differ between various Amish groups.
The common theme is that the Amish place great value on their community. Although they do engage in solo activities, such as reading, sewing, and writing, most of their leisure time is spent with other people.
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