Up Jenkins

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Up Jenkins
Playerstypically two teams of 2–4
Setup time1 minute
Playing time10–20 minutes or less
Random chanceNone
Skill(s) requiredguessing, 'poker face'

Up Jenkins, also known by the shortened name Jenkins, is a party game in which players conceal a small coin (or ring, button, etc.) in their palm as they slap it on a table with their bare hands. The goal of the game is for the players on the team without the coin to correctly identify which hand the coin is under. The game typically consists of two- to four-player teams, one on each side of a table. There are no official rules, so rules may vary widely, the game is often played with alcohol beverages with which to drink as a forfeit.


The captain of one team takes a coin and passes it under the table to the second person of the team. The players on that team pass the coin under the table back and forth from one player to another. The object of the game is to do it so carefully that the opposing team cannot guess which player has the coin.

Once this selection is made, the opposing team's captain yells "Up Jenkins" at which point all players on the team with the coin place their elbows on the table with their hands extended straight toward the ceiling. The opposing team's captain then yells "Down Jenkins" or "Bang Ems", at which point the "coin" team slams their palms face-down on the table. The goal of this stage of the game is to conceal the "clink" of the coin on the table to confuse the other team as to where the coin is.[1]

In some variants of the game, other commands can be given before the coins are slammed onto the table. A request of "Open Windows" requires selected finger gaps to be opened, and "Creepy Crawlies" requires players to curl their hands and move them around on the table in the manner of a crab.

In the guessing phase of the game, the non-coin team selects palms, one by one, in an attempt to isolate the coin as the "last palm standing." Where the games is played in conjunction with alcohol, successful isolation results in the coin team drinking. Failure to do so results in the non-coin team drinking. The quantity of alcohol consumed per round is a matter of house rules or local variation.

The game can also be played as a children's party game.[2]

Alternative versions[edit]

  • A similar game in Wales is Tippit, which was used as the basis for the S4C television game show Tipit.
  • Mheibes[3] or Mhebiss[4] in Iraq, often played during Ramadan and was also once televised.[3]
  • Referred to as "Up Chickens" in many Midwestern states, especially Michigan.

In popular culture[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lane, Tessy (March 6, 2007). "Up-Jenkins: Drinking Game or Social Experiment". Retrieved 2008-08-01.
  2. ^ Unknown. "Up Jenkins! Classic Games". Retrieved 2008-08-01.
  3. ^ a b "Mahabis".
  4. ^ "Mhebiss".