10 Fantastic Ideas to While Away Time and Have Fun During a Power Outage

Last Updated on July 4, 2022

You probably heard it said: “You only get bored if you’re boring.” This saying can be especially applicable when the power suddenly goes off, unannounced. Yes, what will you do during a sudden power outage (or “blackout”)? 

Perhaps there’s little you can do to salvage the situation. 

So you wonder: How will I spend this time? What will I do with the Kids? What will I do until power is back?  What if the outage lasts for hours?  All these questions can overwhelm you during such a time. But should you worry any longer?

Not at all; here are 15 fantastic suggestions on precisely what you can do when the power goes off and- suddenly- you find yourself with loads of time in your hands:

Practically Prepare for a Power Outage

For starters, long before the power goes off, you need to do something to prepare for this possibility. You need to have a few items on hand- these will help you while away time without getting bored. What are these items? 

Here’s a practical list:

  • One or two flashlights
  • Candles,
  • Batteries
  • A fully-charged iPod or battery-powered radio
  • Non-perishable food and water
  • Cards/drawing material

NB: Is this a scheduled power outage, the kind you anticipate? You can invite a few friends and neighbors for group activities- this often makes for more fabulous fun.

Play Board Games or Cards

So, this is the sort of thing for friends and neighbors- the candles and flashlights. Consider playing some popular fun games together. This might include Pandemic, Apples to Apples or Settlers of Catan

Do you adore your days of adolescence? Try playing Dungeons and Dragons (this is where the candles come in handy; they will surely enhance the carnival atmosphere).

Would you rather scheme to take a little of your visiting friends’ money (hopefully)? Why not have a deck of cards around; for more fun, you can try Texas Hold ‘Em. But if you don’t have friends around, try the game of solitaire. Remember to print this out in advance.

Cast Shadow Puppets

Get out that flashlight. Randomly cast shadows on the walls. Try “doing” different kinds of animals on the walls; before you know it you’ll have a whole new show on the walls.  For more fun, cast a shadow and let others guess the character on the all; what fun this can be!

Write Nostalgic Letters

Do you recall the last time you wrote a profoundly personal mail? Wasn’t it memorable? Well, it’s time to rewrite that personal, heartfelt letter to your dear parents, friends, favorite author- or future self! 

In the letter, tell them how the going’s getting, a story about the last few days or how terrible it is to stay in mid- darkness. Whatever the case, chances are- they’ll love to pick something in the mailbox- something other than the usual coupon or bill.

Surround That Fireplace

Likely, you have friends who may not have fireplaces back in their homes; call them over for a small get together. Do so before the power goes off. Ensure there’s a real fire around the fireplace. 

    • Here are a few things to do:
    • Roast some hot dogs or marshmallows
    • Surround the fireplace and tell some frightening ghost stories
    • Cheekily throw a few harmless objects into the fire and wait to see what happens (carefully choose what you throw in- avoid accidents!)

Get Yourself Tipsy

It’s probably cold outside; why not put your beer on the porch, the fire escape or the balcony? You can otherwise stock up some ice or drink that red wine, swirling it at room temperature; yeah, get yourself a little bit tipsy.

Have a Wild Dance!

You probably have friends around- this is a perfect opportunity! Call those friends. Choose a room, get the flashlights on, tune your radio to the pop hits station– yeah, dance your heads off. Have the fun of a lifetime. 

Even if you’re alone, have some fun- the kind you’ll remember for months to come.

Start Reading That Book

Have you been mulling about reading a book you bought sometimes back? You’ve kept postponing it, again and again; now is the time (hopefully, you’re in the mood for it). 

Yeah, it could be that romantic tale, the classic folk story, blockbuster novel or the memoires of President John F Kennedy– the choice is yours- do start reading Chapter One now.  

Beware, though! It might get tricky doing the first few pages- you might even start hating English. Regardless, you’ll soon discover time has “flown by”, and 3 hours have passed. Who knows; you might get hooked!

Hide and Seek

Try playing a hide and seek game. Come up with new rules; for instance, let everyone know they can only hide on a specific level in the house. Let them know only the seeker is allowed to have a flashlight. Let the seeker go through the pitch darkness, searching for people in hiding. 

But be careful; avoid using real flames. Let it be everyone’s time for fun.

Think of it: It would really be nice to have a portable generator at home. This will greatly simplify life; for example, your food won’t get spoilt in the fridge. Also, keep this in mind- during the hurricane season, you might lose your power supply for a whole week.

In view of this, is it surprising that the solar-powered home generator has recently gained popularity among many? No. A solar-powered generator typically stores energy while the sun shines, so you can use it for quite a while during a power outage. Try to make this a reality.

Paint or Draw

Ever read the celebrated cartoonist Phil McAndrew’s inspiring stories? Read it again! Like Phil, most of us drew pictures at some stage in our lives- you probably remember those sketches in your kindergarten days. 

Why not retrace those footsteps; who knows, the unrelenting darkness might enhance the urge to do so. Try redrawing those favorite childhood characters, adorable mammals or scary monsters!

Travel Back In Time

Try to reenact the former days; the days the world had no electricity. Yeah- relive those days when no one had electricity, running water or a heater system. Instead, most people used lanterns or candles for lighting. They used coal or wood to make warmth and got water by hand-drawn means. 

Feel spoilt- for a moment, get away from the luxuries we enjoy in the 21st century; appreciate the ancestors- experience the simple life they used to live. Get away from the familiar flipping switch, the computer, the toaster oven and the cell phone.


While no one really likes it when the power goes off, you can take advantage of the outage to have tremendous fun with your family. 

Tale a little time; prepare for a possible power outage. Get some things ready- items that you can use to entertain yourself, your family and friends.  

Be creative, make the best of that unexpected or scheduled power outage.  

Who knows? You might just discover a new fun way of life that you never imagined was possible.

Share your thoughts