17 Fun Thanksgiving Party Games

Family playing in leaves

17 Fun Thanksgiving Party Games

Family playing in leaves

Thanksgiving party games can bring new life to your yearly celebration of food, friends and family and break the ice to add a fun and surprising element to the day. Adults and children can all enjoy playing a few games to pass the time and share some laughs. Offer a fun mix of games so all your guests can take part in something and your traditional Thanksgiving dinner can be turned into something unforgettable.

Free Printable Thanksgiving Games for Adults

When you want a grown-up game to play at the adult table, printable Thanksgiving games are easy to make and easy to use. Click on the image of the game you want to print and use this helpful guide for troubleshooting.

Who’s the Most Thankful? Printable Game

In this fast-paced game each guest must guess who at the table is most thankful for each item on the list. Items include everything from Black Friday shopping to after-dinner naps. Find out how well you know everyone’s Thanksgiving favorites with a simple, printable game. Since the game is timed and involves a lot of writing, it’s best for older kids and adults.

Who's the Most Thankful? Game

Thanksgiving Words Around the Table Printable Game

If you love playing Words With Friends on your phone or Scrabble, you’ll love the simplicity of Thanksgiving Words Around the Table. One player starts by writing a Thanksgiving word on the empty grid then passes the paper to the next player. The goal is to see how many times you can send the game around the table. While older kids can join in the fun, this game is geared toward teens and adults.

Thanksgiving Words Around the Table Game

Family Thanksgiving Party Games

Get the whole family in on the fun with Thanksgiving party games made for a mixed age group.

Thanksgiving Oddball Out

All players for this fun and easy Thanksgiving game will need to sit in a circle.

  1. Gather several small pumpkins, real or plush, and one small turkey.
  2. Hand these out to random players, not everyone will start with an item.
  3. Chant the Thanksgiving song below to the tune of “Hot Potato” and pass the items to the left as you go.
    1. Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving, who loves Thanksgiving? If you love Thanksgiving turkey, you are out!
  4. No one can hold more than one item at a time and you must take an item handed to you if your hands are empty.
  5. When the chant ends, the person holding the turkey is out of the game.
  6. Play several rounds until only one person is left.

Thanksgiving Charades

Get ready to act out all your favorite Thanksgiving staples in this wild family game. Split the group into two teams. Take turns acting out things related to Thanksgiving like a turkey, Native Americans, or giving thanks. If your teammates guess what you are acting out within about two minutes, your team gets a point. If not, the other team gets a chance to guess and takes the point if they get it right. The team with the most points in the end wins.

Naptime Field Goals

Celebrate the traditional after dinner nap with a fun football game kids and adults can enjoy.

  1. Split the group into two teams.
  2. One player from Team One lays down on their back and holds their arms straight up in the air as uprights.
  3. One player from Team Two lays down on their back so the bottom of their feet meet the bottom of Team One’s feet.
  4. Team Two holds a plush football, turkey, pumpkin, or small throw pillow with arms stretched up straight.
  5. The Team Two player can bend at the waist only to sit up and try throwing the ball through the uprights.
  6. If the ball goes through the uprights, it’s three points.
  7. After each attempt, players switch out laying down and the opposite teams “kicks” a field goal.
  8. The team with the most points after all have had a turn to both kick and be the uprights wins.

Thanksgiving Trivia Contest

Hold a trivia contest to see how much your guests know about why Thanksgiving is celebrated and the images commonly associated with the holiday. Pair younger and older family members to ensure fairness, or create separate sets of questions for kids and adults. Printable Thanksgiving trivia question and answers cover everything from turkey facts to the first Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving Dinner Table Games

While you’ve got everyone sitting at the table, have a little fun with Thanksgiving dinner table games.

I’m Going to Thanksgiving Talking Game

Whether you’re sitting around the table or relaxing after your meal, this talking game can be played by all ages in any Thanksgiving setting from the office to school. The game is similar to the “I’m going on a picnic” game often played at summer camps.

  1. The first person chooses a pattern for the game, like every word starts with the letter “T” or each item could be found at the first Thanksgiving.
  2. Player One says “I’m going to Thanksgiving and I’m taking…” followed by one item that fits their pattern.
  3. Each successive player uses the same phrase to say an item.
    1. If their item fits the pattern, the first player will say “you’re welcome at Thanksgiving.”
    2. If it’s wrong, Player One says “you can’t come to this Thanksgiving.”
  4. Play continues until everyone has figured out the pattern and states two items on two turns in a row that are accepted.

Thanksgiving Napkin Categories

Start with one napkin and a marker. As a group, choose a Thanksgiving category like dinner, parade, or first Thanksgiving. The first player writes down a word that starts with the same first letter as their name and fits the category. For example, if your name is Mark and the category is Thanksgiving dinner, you might write “mashed potatoes.” Keep the napkin going around the table until a player can’t come up with an answer. Start a new napkin with a new category.

Thanksgiving Dinner Rhyme Time

After everyone has taken their seat and filled their plate, start this funny rhyming game.

Family talking and enjoying Thanksgiving dinner

  1. Choose one person to go first then continue game play to the left.
  2. The first player gets to pick any one item, food or decoration, on the table then states one real word that rhymes with the name of the item they chose.
  3. The next player has to choose a different word that also rhymes.
  4. Keep track of how far each rhyme travels.
  5. When a player can’t think of a rhyme, that rhyme pattern ends and the player chooses a new word.
  6. The player who gave the word that resulted in the most rhymes is the winner.

Gobble, Gobble, Eat

This simple Thanksgiving dinner table game engages your listening skills. Throughout the dinner, anytime you hear the words “gobble, gobble,” you take a bite of turkey. If you hear the word “thankful,” you take a bite of your favorite food from the dinner. If you hear the word “stuffed,” you take a bite of stuffing. After you take your bite, say the “magic word” again and keep your fork in your mouth. Everyone else at the table has to take a bite of the right food. The last person to take a bite is out. Play continues throughout dinner until one winner emerges.

Active Thanksgiving Party Games

Many Thanksgiving games for children include action and can be adapted to any age group. Play active party games before dinner when everyone still has some energy.

Build a Turkey Game

Give each person or team a bag of craft supplies and odds-and-ends gathered from around the home. Materials could include construction paper, pipe cleaners, felt, markers, glue, paper clips, drinking straws, sequins, buttons, and more. Ask the players to construct a turkey or other seasonally appropriate object from these supplies. Set a time limit of ten to fifteen minutes, so younger guests don’t lose interest in the activity. Award prizes, such as small trinkets or an extra piece of pie, to the best creations. To avoid naming winners and losers, you could also give each craft a title like “Most Lifelike” or “Best Use of Glitter.”

Making Thanksgiving turkey crafts

Fruit Salad or Cornucopia Game

This listening game works best with a larger group.

  1. Players should sit in a circle, with one player standing in the middle; this is the “chef.”
  2. Assign each player the name of a fruit or vegetable.
    1. If two or more players share the same name, the chef calls out a single fruit or vegetable.
    2. If each player is given an individual name, then the chef will call out combinations, such as “squash and potatoes.”
  3. When their food is called, players must jump up and find a new seat.
  4. When the chef calls out “fruit salad” or “cornucopia,” all players must find a new seat, including the chef.
  5. Whoever is left standing at the end is the chef.

Turkey Hunt

Create a Thanksgiving version of the Easter egg hunt. Throughout the house or around the yard, hide an assortment of turkeys. The hidden turkeys can be paper cutouts or small birds made of felt or other crafty materials. Give a prize to the player that finds the most. This activity can keep kids occupied while they wait for the start of dinner.

Classic Football Game

Work off that extra serving of dressing while you take part in one of the healthiest options for Thanksgiving games, football. Take care not to get too competitive, and look for ways to include all family members, regardless of age and ability. Play indoors by requiring all players to crawl or walk on their knees, assigning furniture pieces in different rooms as end zones, and using a plush ball. Play flag football outside to make it less physical.

Thanksgiving Party Icebreaker Games

Whether you’re hosting an office party or an open-door Thanksgiving, icebreaker games can help everyone get to know each other and get in the holiday spirit. Look for ways to adapt things like parent-child icebreaker games to a Thanksgiving theme.

Turkey Fill-in Favorites

Get to know your co-workers or strangers as you volunteer at a local soup kitchen on Thanksgiving with a simple game of favorites.

  1. Print out a free Thanksgiving coloring page like the simple turkey. Supply crayons and markers.
  2. Set a timer for about 30 seconds per player.
  3. On their turn, each player chooses their favorite color and uses it to color in one section of the turkey.
  4. The player then uses a marker to write one word that they love or that describes them in their colored space.
  5. The paper then gets passed to the next player. As the game progresses, players try to remember who filled in which section.
  6. When time is up have everyone write down their guess for who filled in each section then discuss the word written in each section.

Thanksgiving Word Association

Print out one of the free Thanksgiving word searches for kids for each player. On “Go,” each player looks for the first word they see in the search grid. Players are most likely to find the given words, but may also find words that aren’t on the list. When each player finds their first word, they flip their paper over. When everyone finds one word, go around the group and discuss what word each person found and how that word relates to their life.

First Thanksgiving Flashback

Similar to the classic small group icebreaker game, Marooned, this Thanksgiving version tells a lot about each player. Set a time limit of about three minutes. During this time each player must list what three people they’d invite to their first Thanksgiving and what three foods they’d eat. Players also try to choose items others won’t because the goal is for the whole group to host a fictional first Thanksgiving that features different guests and only one of each food item. When time is up, see how many different guests and foods the group came up with as a whole by having each player describe their choices.

Video Games and Online Games to Play on Thanksgiving

Group video games, cooperative online or mobile games, and video game tournaments can be a fun way to pass the time at a long Thanksgiving party.

Be Grateful for Thanksgiving Games

Whatever games you choose to include at your Thanksgiving celebration, remember to be thankful for the time that you’ve been given together. Offer games that can be played in groups so there is something for everyone to enjoy. Games that are suitable for kids and adults can offer hours of entertainment and will turn your ordinary celebration into something extraordinary!

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