Playing Cornhole

Oh, yes. That's me (on the right). Playing Cornhole. Sigh.

Confession. I played Cornhole this past weekend. That’s right. Cornhole. The game. Shocking, I know.

For those of you located outside of the Midwest, specifically Ohio and Kentucky, you probably have no idea what Cornhole is. Or, you’re thinking, “Tossing bean bags in a hole. Awesome.”

If the latter, you’re thinking sacrilegious thoughts. And, you’re right. But, no way should one ever refer to Cornhole as Bean Bag Toss. No way, indeed. It’s so much more!

[Insert sarcasm here.]

Cornhole has been around forever. Forever and ever. Known as Bean Bag Toss, Bean Toss, Corn Toss or Soft Horseshoes, children people have been playing this game for a long, long time. Wikipedia Some says the Germans were playing it way back in the 14th century. I suspect it’s as old as the hills. Those Kentucky hills that is.

Nowadays, you can’t go anywhere in the Midwest without seeing advertisements for Cornhole Tournaments or Cornhole sets for sale or people playing Cornhole. The game consists of two platforms raised at one end with one hole located toward the far, raised end and 8 corn bags. Hypothetically, the bags might be filled with beans, but for the sake of Cornhole, we’ll say they’re filled with corn. The platforms are placed 30 feet apart and adversaries take turns tossing corn bags at the raised platforms, while standing next to and behind the opposite platform.

Also, there’s scoring. A corn bag in the hole scores 3 points; a corn bag on the platform scores 1 point. First contestant to 21 wins. But, you can’t go over 21 or else you are automatically set back to 15. Those are the rules.

Now, the platforms are typically decorated and tend to be as colourful as their users are unique. You can often tell an owner’s likes/dislikes by taking a quick glance at his/her boards. I noticed a lot of Ohio State, Michigan and Nascar themes while in the NW Ohio area this past weekend. Which should give you a pretty good indication of the area’s cultural flavour.

While visiting my parents, Dad ushered us into the shed to view his latest creation: newly minted Cornhole boards.

“Oh, Dad!” I thought to myself. “You crossed over.” And joined the many, many, many individuals who enjoy kicking back on an evening or weekend afternoon with a brewski in one hand and a corn bag in the other. Except, Dad doesn’t enjoy brewskies. He just likes the game. Plus, as it turns out, he’s kind of a semi-pro.

His board design? John Deere*. Would anything else have been more appropriate? I think not.

Want to know more about Cornhole? The game that’s safer than horseshoes and cooler than Ring Toss? You can visit this site. The American Cornhole Association. Who knew?

Really. WHO knew?

PS. I’m HORRIBLE at Cornhole. Hor. I. Ble. I throw like a girl. The end.

* Good news! Dad’s Cornhole set now has real decals, which were placed after this photo was taken. Good work, Dad!

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3 thoughts on “Playing Cornhole

  1. Mom says:

    After you left and in the process of trying to figure how to put decals on; I read the rules. Corn hole boards, accordingly, are placed 24ft. apart unless a tournament; then 27ft. Your father had them 30ft in case anyone was wondering why the ladies were having a hard time slinging the bags and wanted to count the ‘dirty bags’ which I believe is the name for bags that bounce onto the board. Anyway it was fun.

    • jilladuling says:

      I’ve decided that Cornhole is best played when you make up the rules and then simply stick to them.

      “Lady” my foot. I’ve seen you toss a bean bag, Mom!

  2. i HATE this game. avoid it at all costs. ugh.

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