Fun Thanksgiving Activities for the Family

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Arts and crafts are a fun Thanksgiving activity for the whole family

Thanksgiving is a day to enjoy the company of family and your closest friends. With a full day dedicated to spending it with each other, there is plenty of time to plan fun activities to keep everyone entertained. All of these activities are geared towards kids, but are great for getting everyone engaged and enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday.

Outdoor Activities

Before the cooking and eating begins, it’s the perfect time to head outside. With Thanksgiving falling during autumn you can almost always count on beautiful weather to enjoy.

If you have a larger group of people, and everyone is feeling a bit competitive, touch football is a fun choice. You’ll get in your exercise before eating so you can feel a little less guilty about the second helping at dinner. The game will also be the talk of the table as everyone recaps the plays and touchdowns.

For smaller groups or those with a little less organization, a classic game of catch can be played or a soccer ball can be kicked around. Even if it wasn’t meant to be competitive, it usually turns out that way once everyone starts passing the ball around!

If you’ve had time to train, most cities also have a Turkey Trot or festive run that occurs on the morning of Thanksgiving. The distances are usually shorter so you and your kids can run or walk it together. It’s a great way to get out as a family and celebrate Thanksgiving with your community.


Besides taking a day to acknowledge everything you are thankful for, Thanksgiving is notorious for its often lavish feasts. So rather than kicking the kids out of the kitchen while the meal is being prepared, invite them in to help. Simple recipes, like side dishes, are perfect for kids since they can learn how to cook with a few ingredients.

Mashed potatoes are an easy, fool-proof option and what’s more fun than smashing up potatoes? If they’re a little older they can try their hand at helping you prepare a casserole or a vegetable medley.

Not only will they feel accomplished creating something that the family can enjoy, it also gives you a brief reprieve from trying to manage all the dishes yourself.

Thanksgiving Arts and Crafts

While the foods in the oven it’s the perfect time to get out the art supplies and create Thanksgiving decorations and crafts. If you’re short on supplies and time, get out some blank paper and markers for your kids to draw turkeys and other festive icons of the Thanksgiving holiday. These drawings can then be used as placemats at the dinner table or hung up as decorations.

If you have a few supplies lying around, we like these handprint turkey hats. With a few sheets of colored cardboard paper, scissors, glue, and a marker, they’ll be able to create fun hats they can wear.

Depending on where you live, you may be able to find pine cones outside in your yard. Pick up a few and gather some supplies like pom poms, googly eyes, and strands of ribbon. Combine these and your kids can make their very own pinecone turkey. These are perfect for decorating the table or your home for Thanksgiving.

Indoor Activities

When the plates are cleared and everyone is feeling full from the meal, get out the board games and cards. Classic games like Monopoly, Life, and Yahtzee are family favorites and can keep everyone entertained after the main event of dinner is over.

Even with a deck of cards you can play a number of games. Family poker night can become a new Thanksgiving tradition, or if no one is up for gambling, a game of crazy eights is a simple way to keep the whole family around the table and having fun together.  

Fun Ideas for Thanksgiving

Those are a few Thanksgiving activities to get your started or have you feeling inspired. We always love hearing about other families traditions, too. What are your favorite Thanksgiving activities? Share them in the comments below!

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