You’ve already planned the invitations, the food, and the decorations for your fall festival. What’s missing? The games, of course!

Putting up a variety of fun, family-friendly games makes all the difference in a fall event. Without games, kids get bored and parents want to leave. But with games, everyone has fun! After a successful event like that, kids (and parents, too) will be more likely to see your church as engaging and family-friendly.

What kinds of games are best? Try these five options (and be sure to order plenty of prizes, too)!

  1. Forget biting into mushy apples and spreading countless germs—there’s a new way to bob for apples. Purchase reusable plastic apple containers (example here), fill them with small goodies, and put them in water (a plastic swimming pool works well). During the festival, give children handheld nets and let them scoop out an apple or two. If your budget allows, purchase a few larger giveaways and simply put slips of paper in a few of the apples that say, “You’ve won a big prize!”
  2. It’s time for the pumpkin ring toss! Gather a number of long-stemmed pumpkins and arrange them sporadically throughout your game area. Put some close to the “toss line,” put some far away, put some on hay bales, and the like. Hand participants several Light the Night with Jesus silicone glow-in-the-dark bracelets and invite them to toss the bracelets onto the pumpkin stems. Designate prize levels based on the number of successful tosses. Make sure everyone walks away with one of the glow-in-the-dark bracelets.
  3. Create a friendly competition by filling a couple of two-liter soda bottles halfway full with candy corn. Take two more two-liter soda bottles and use duct tape to attach them to the top of the candy corn bottles (like an hourglass). The object of the game is for each participant to turn over their candy-filled bottle and shake, tip, and swirl all of the candy corn into the other bottle.
  4. Grab 30 orange disposable plastic cups and one special cup. Have participants begin the game with the special cup on top. When the timer starts, have them move the cups, one by one, until the special cup is on the bottom, in their hands. See who can do it the fastest! Everyone is a winner—they all walk away with a special cup to take home.
  5. Find two trees and build your own spider web with rope (helpful instructions here) in the space between them. Set three or four small baskets behind the web. As participants arrive at the game, give them three or four plastic spiders or bugs (example here). The object of the game is to throw the spiders through the web and into the baskets. Send each player home with a goodie bag.


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