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Games

How to play and the rules of jackstraws

The pick-up sticks game. You play this game with 50 thin wooden sticks. Begin by holding the jackstraws in a bunch just above a flat surface. Release them, letting them fall into a tangled pile.

Pick up one straw at a time. Use only your fingers and be careful not to move another straw. You may twist a straw free, or lever one by pressing down on its end. A jackstraw’s color indicates its value. Green is worth 3 points; red, 5; and blue, 10. The one black straw is worth 20 points. Once you have it, you can use it to help lift out other straws.

If another straw moves, your turn is up, and the next player takes over. When there are no straws left, the player with the most points wins.