For our family reunions we include a white elephant gift exchange. We all wrap up some odd things from our houses, bring them to the reunion, and then exchange them as gifts. It's very amusing.
Thanks for sharing Carolyn. My family always has fun with this game too. It gets wackier and funnier every time we play.
For those who have never played before...
Ask your guests to bring something they don't use to the reunion to exchange as a gift (you can set any manner of criteria for this).
Place the gifts in the center of the play area at your reunion. The gifts should be wrapped, but that can be a matter of preference by the host.
Have everyone who brought a gift sit or stand in a circle around the gifts.
Write numbers equal to the number of gifts on slips of paper twice, one set to hand to guests and the other for drawing. Make sure the numbers are written clearly so that there aren't arguments about what's a 6 and what's a 9, etc.
My family uses a couple of decks of playing cards instead (be sure that an extras are taken out and for every card you give out there is a match for drawing).
When all of the guests have a numbered slip of paper (or a playing card), drop the other set in a bowl (or shuffle the cards) and begin drawing.
Whatever guest has the matching number (or card) of your first draw chooses a gift and opens it.
Whatever guest has the matching number (or card) of your second draw has the choice to steal the gift of your other guest just opened or choose an unwrapped gift and open it. If player 2 steals player 1's gift, player 1 chooses and opens another gift.
Whatever guest has the matching number (or card) of your third draw has the choice to steal any of the gifts that have already been opened or choose an unwrapped gift and open it. If player 3 steals player 1 or 2's gift, that player chooses and opens another gift and the game continues this way till all of the gifts are spoken for.
The last time I played this game my husband landed up with a very old pair of garden shoes and I got a food sealer. Thank God we did not win the 3 foot Egyptian sphinx. I have no idea how we would have got that home.