6 Unforgettable Thanksgiving Activities for Families

It’s official! Thanksgiving is just around the corner and if you have family coming into town, you might be scrambling for last minute things-to-do to keep everyone occupied and happy. Well, fret no more! We’ve compiled a list of six Thanksgiving activities for families that are sure to create some truly wonderful holiday memories this year.

6 Thanksgiving Activities Your Whole Family Can Enjoy

Flag Football

This one is a Thanksgiving tradition for a reason! With football season upon us, it’s tough to not want to get in on the action yourselves. For safety purposes, we recommend a good ol’ game of flag football. That way, all ages and levels of ability can play. If you live in a warmer state (such as Arizona) stake out space at a nearby park and get everyone together for a few plays. You can get flags to play here.


Since Thanksgiving is also sometimes considered the season of “giving back”, volunteering can be a great activity the whole family can participate in.

If your family has a particular passion for animals, carve out space in the calendar for all of you to volunteer at a local animal shelter for a few hours either on Thanksgiving or in the days following. You can also volunteer to gather canned goods to donate in your neighborhood, or serve hot meals at a local homeless shelter.

When searching for volunteer opportunities, check how old kids need to be to attend. Some nonprofits require kids to be at least 16 years old or older.

Hand Turkeys

Ah, another classic! This Thanksgiving activity for families is perfect for those with younger children. Simply give the kids paper, crayons, and markers and let them go to town!

Show them how tracing their little hands on the paper creates the turkey body with feathers and let them decorate to their hearts’ content. It can even be fun to give them craft items such as googly eyes or fake feathers and sequins to spice up their hand turkeys (as long as they’re old enough not to choke and/or try to eat the decor!)

Gratitude Skittles Game

In the rush of the holiday season, it can be difficult to remember to give thanks for all the good things in life. The Gratitude Skittles Game is a great way for kids to learn what it means to be thankful (and it’s a good reminder for adults, too!)

Here are the basics of the Gratitude Skittles Game from PlayPartyPlan.com:

  1. Print out the Skittles color breakdown (click here)
  2. Give everyone a fun size pack of Skittles. Remind them these are for the game and not to be eaten (yet).
  3. Have everyone dump out a Skittle from their pack. Make sure they dump it out without looking rather than hand-picking what color they want. 
  4. Write down something their grateful for the blank thankful for page that matches the color Skittle they got. So for instance if they dumped out a red, they would write a person they are grateful for on the line next to the red dot.

Thanksgiving Pictionary

This is one of our favorite Thanksgiving activities for families! It follows all the same rules as regular Pictionary, but with a Thanksgiving theme (such as drawing a Pilgrim or Sweet Potatoes). For the full rules, plus a free PDF printout with the Thanksgiving Pictionary topics, click here.

Don’t Topple the Teepee

Does your family love the game Jenga or Pick Up Sticks? If so, check out this similar game with a Thanksgiving twist! This is a great game to play plus it will help the little ones of your crew fine-tune their motor skills.

Shared by TheInspiredTreehouse.com, this game requires:

  • Sticks, pencils, chopsticks, wooden skewers, or small twigs or, for a mini version try toothpicks!
  • A loop to place the sticks inside (i.e. scrapbook paper, cut section of a toilet paper roll or paper cup)

To play, take your bundle of sticks and place them inside the loop. Have kids take turns carefully pulling out one stick at a time. The first one who crashes the teepee loses!

Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be all about eating. This year, make it extra memorable with one of these six Thanksgiving activities for families.

Entertain your family and kids with one of these six Thanksgiving activities for families this holiday season. If you’re planning on hosting a large Christmas, too, most of these activities are easily adaptable to fit the theme. After all, what’s better than the fabulous combination of fun, food, and family? It’s truly what the holidays are all about.

Looking for a brand new novel to cozy up with this holiday season? Dive into The Sieger Chronicles! This latest dystopian saga will have you (and your teens) gripping the edge of your seat at every page. Buy on Amazon today!