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What non-obvious fun activity can a group of friends do that also benefits those who are not involved?

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Darko Savic
Darko Savic Apr 04, 2022
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Come up with a non-obvious enjoyable activity for a group of friends that is also beneficial for other people who are not a part of the group. Aim to create win-win situations that are good for everyone involved.
Describe the activity in the creative contributions section only if you came up with it, or if you made a known activity significantly different/upgraded/more fun.
Activities that are well-known (you didn't come up with) belong in the comments section.
Why do this?
Everyone likes to have fun, try new things, and spend time with their friends. With the activity you devise, people all over the world can enjoy doing good for others. In turn, the world becomes slightly better for it. Everyone wins.
10
Creative contributions

Cooking with Mom

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Mayco Castro
Mayco Castro Apr 06, 2022
A group of friends of a community competes in a cooking contest, in which each friend teams up with their own mom to cook a family recipe (if mom is not there anymore, change to father, grandma, sister, or significant other, ) The "Cooking With Mom" contest is transmitted live online (FB or YT) and the community gets to vote on which "duo" they think will win. Rules:
  • The duos cook a family recipe
  • Mom will only give direction. The son or daughter does all the cooking alone.
  • Online voters guess which duo will win up until before the judges make a decision
  • A set of judges decides which plate wins
  • The winning "duo" get's a medal or a trophy... something symbolic.
  • A gift card of $100 is raffled to an online participant that guessed the right winner duo. Or, they get invited to challenge the winning duo in the following contest.
  • The food is donated to the community charities / and or the homeless. Or,
  • The food is sold and the money goes to local charities.
Game twist
Mom and Kid challenge: instead of competing in duos, the parents challenge their own kids to cook the same recipe. Judges decide who cooks better... Mom or Junior! ;-)
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic5 months ago
I imagine this competition could be done as part of a communal barbecue or an extended family get-together. The teams would be known ahead of time so that the event can be planned. Outdoor tables/countertops prepared. A Jury could be selected on the spot.
Prepared meals could then be served buffet style so that everyone can get to taste them.
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Monthly trash-collecting competition/league

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Miloš Stanković
Miloš Stanković Apr 13, 2022
A group of friends divides into two or more teams with similar combined body weight. They then compete in trying to collect trash at scenic locations reaching their weight in garbage. The team that reaches their target weight first, wins. If there are more teams, a point system is introduced.
Teams also don't have to have similar weights, whatever split the friends agree on is OK.
Every month, a new park, beach, or forest is visited. Gamifying anything makes it more exciting, let alone competition, and there would be benefits of cardio and mobility training within.
Additionally, as it is a weight-based goal, the competitors would have an incentive to lose weight as the goal would be month-based.
The winners of the league get their cars washed by the losers or something similar.
Obviously, the ones who are not involved would benefit from cleaner areas. Also, observers would surely find it funny to see a bunch of people running frantically collecting garbage.
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Povilas S
Povilas S5 months ago
How would you prevent participants from cheating and collecting something non-essential in order to win? There's a rather thin line between garbage and non-garbage, even if you make teams spread the content of their bags at the end of the competition and manually check whether what they have collected is all garbage, this doesn't guarantee that someone won't put something from a nearby container, sidewalk, etc.
When there is no competition and the main motivation is volunteering, people don't collect non-essential stuff, in fact, they might even leave some small pieces of trash lying, here we would have a vice-versa situation:)
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Miloš Stanković
Miloš Stanković5 months ago
Povilas S I don't think that the award/punishment is strong enough that it would incentivize cheating and placing tree branches or stones into the trash bags. Everyone knows that the primary goal is to do good and have fun. It's a group of friends after all, not a competitive sports league.
Although you could designate a sector of the area, like divide a beach into two and a flip a coin for which team gets which side. Then after the race is complete, the teams check the perimeter for what is left and teams who left light trash like paper get a deduction in points.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic5 months ago
This is a good one. A non-competitive variant of this idea has been done in my area for the past 10 years. I vaguely remember mentioning it on Brainstorming in the past
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A group of experts get together and compete in who can most impactfully improve their client's life, free of charge

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Darko Savic
Darko Savic Apr 04, 2022
A group of experts in a specific field figures out a way to compete with each by applying their knowledge/skills to fix random people's shortcomings.
Example: A Youtuber and a few dentists get together to create a series where they pick random people off the street and make their teeth perfect for free. A win-win situation where the show gets views, the dentists get publicity, and a few people get perfect teeth.
p.s. I'm not competing for my own bounty, even though it may seem so. I disqualify myself:)
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Mindful/Contemplative walk

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Manrico Bugeja Apr 05, 2022
A group of friends could go for a mindful/contemplatitive (the name doesn't make much of a difference), preferably in nature.
It is fun, enjoyable and being in nature and with friends are 2 things even science has proven to give benefits. The effects of such a walk would result in better attitudes and dispositions in those who make the walk which would mean positive actions (and benefits) towards others, creating a ripple effect of love and good actions.
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Hedgehog Group

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SW
stuart wiffin Apr 05, 2022
Plant something. Anything. Makes the world look better and stores carbon.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic5 months ago
it should also be fun so that a bunch of friends would enjoy doing it:) for example, guerilla gardening:


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Any chain reaction challenge.

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Spook Louw
Spook Louw Apr 12, 2022
Think of things like the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge or any similar challenge that has gone viral over the years. A group of friends could easily initiate such a challenge by picking a cause or an activity, filming themselves doing it and then challenging other friends to do the same.
The Ice Bucket Challenge was structured in a way that if you did not want to do the challenge, you were supposed to donate to the cause. I think this is flawed, as it is the challenge that becomes viral, not the cause. So I believe that the challenge itself should benefit the community.
For instance, a group of 5 friends could each plant a tree and challenge 3 other friends to do the same, the growth of this is obviously exponential, 5 becomes 15, 15 becomes 45, 45 becomes 135. That means 135 trees could be planted if the challenge makes it to 3 rounds if everyone who is nominated participates.
Some ideas for challenges
  • Plant a tree (as suggested by stuart wiffin
  • Buy a meal for someone in need
  • Build something for the community
  • Beautify a public space (decorate, clean, restore or paint)
  • Or even something as vague as "Brighten someones day" (keeping the challenge vague allows for participants to be creative in how they approach it)
  • Interview a friend (There is a BBC podcast called Chain Reaction that is built on this concept. The interviewee becomes the following weeks interviewer. This could be a cool way to find out more about people in your community)
  • Leave a 100% tip for a server
The possibilities are obviously constrained only by our imagination, you can use this format to encourage others to join you in doing pretty much anything. Funny/difficult challenges will probably have better chances of going viral, but making sure a group of people all participate during the initial stages (your circle of friends) will definitely also help the challenge gain traction.
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How you would improve your local neighborhood with small changes?

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DS
Dot Sci-Fi Apr 04, 2022
A group of friends can suggest small improvements or changes they would make to their neighborhoods, workplaces, or other local areas. The game can take the form of, "If you could make a small change, what would you do?"
The idea is to keep it very small and local, not grand unrealistic visions. For example:
  • I wish the crosswalk near my apartment had a longer crossing time, as I always have to rush.
  • I wish the bike lane extended to Main Street, as right now I have to bike on the sidewalk for two blocks.
These can then be pooled together and evaluated by politicians, local businesses, or anyone else. Oftentimes, these minor changes never get done because there is no enough incentive to compain about them.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic6 months ago
Good one. My town has a website where people submit such ideas for the city council to evaluate. Every submission gets acknowledged with a reply on what the council intends to do about it.
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Local companies offering apprenticeships to the homeless for various positions

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Goran Radanovic
Goran Radanovic Apr 04, 2022
Big local companies offer an apprenticeship for a week to the homeless after providing cleaning facilities and wardrobes. The company can alternate them to different positions and hire outstanding candidates.
  • Homeless people receive experience and decide on a career
  • Motivates them to look for a job
  • Gets them off the street
  • The company receives free help
  • Newspapers can publish stories—advertising a company and marketing a homeless person to companies looking for candidates
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic6 months ago
This is a cool idea in itself but doesn't seem to be in line with the challenge's specifications. It's not an activity a group of friends can undertake (and side effects being beneficial to others).
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Flashmobs

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Povilas S
Povilas S Apr 04, 2022
A group of friends can come up with different ideas for various flashmobs. A flashmob is an unannounced and unexpected public event organized by a group of people. The event (it would perhaps be best described as a performance or a social experiment) is meant to surprise/amuse/astonish or even shock people in public.
An example: There's a busy pedestrian street, a metro passage, etc. where people walk back and forth, flashmob organizers blend with that crowd and appear to be random passengers, they distribute themselves sparsely, not to appear to be related as a group, suddenly, all of them "freeze" in various positions to form living sculptures. After some time they start moving again.
This exact flashmob that I described requires quite a lot of people participating in it, to attract significant attention from unrelated people around, but one can come up with many creative ideas for flashmob performances that would involve only a few people and still make a significant effect.
A flashmob is a known concept, I didn't come up with the initial idea for something like that, but it is not a well-known phenomenon and the ideas for different flashmobs are basically limitless. So people could post their original ideas for different flashmobs in the comment section of this contribution.
PS: If you search youtube for flashmob examples you'll find mostly or only unexpected public musical performances, this is not the original concept of a flashmob (even though it could be a musical performance, reducing it to musical performances only takes the whole point of originality and unexpectedness). Flashmob ideas could range from living sculptures that I mentioned to public pillow fights, to people in bikinis sunbathing on a beach in winter, etc.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic6 months ago
This was the first flashmob I ever saw:

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Povilas S
Povilas S6 months ago
Darko Savic That's a great one 😀 But it requires a lot of preparation and equipment and a group of "ordinary" friends would hardly manage.
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Povilas S
Povilas S6 months ago
In my first flashmob, I participated myself, it was the one with living sculptures, and there were other ones with good ideas that I, unfortunately, can't remember now, cause it was like 17 years ago..
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Building doghouses with Legos

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Miloš Stanković
Miloš Stanković Apr 13, 2022
(Photo: Markus Spiske, Pexels.com)
Have a group of friends work on an actual doghouse (kennel) made entirely out of Lego bricks, so that all, regardless of the constructional know-how, can participate in the project. Then donate the doghouse to a family with a dog or a dog shelter.
Add a dog bed for comfort and you get a fun, rare, creative activity that benefits the community by providing brighter-looking houses for dogs that could spruce up shelters or backyards. If it goes to a shelter, the more kennels there are, the less street dogs you'd have.
Doghouses are big enough so that multiple people can work on them at the same time. It can also be done indoors and outdoors. Additionally, Lego bricks are quite good insulators it seems.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic5 months ago
The bricks would probably need to be glued together so that the dog doesn't eat them after chewing on the walls
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Povilas S
Povilas S5 months ago
Darko Savic Also, the dog might destroy such a kennel fairly easily
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Miloš Stanković
Miloš Stanković5 months ago
Povilas S Darko Savic I don't see why dogs would gnaw on the legos any more than they would gnaw on regular non-wire kennels Sometimes it's very hard to separate lego bricks fingers even with fingers, opposable thumbs, and fingernails. It would be a smooth vertical wall after all.
The roof could be a problem, I feel like only the edges of it would need glueing. Maybe not even that with the right design. A slope that would end in the width of the home. Or a slope of the roof that is wider than the house but it gets reinforced all the way towards the sides so it is thicker and harder to bite on.
Some massive dogs like shepherds could damage most things, certainly wooden doghouses, but no corgis or dachshund would be a menace to the Lego Doggo Condo™.😁 Also, let's not forget dog training. Even in shelters, the lego kennel could be the reward for the best dogs.
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