8 Wonderful Family-Friendly Thanksgiving Activities
Thanksgiving is a time when family members of all ages are involved in fun activities and have great time together. Sometimes, however, you may want to vary your traditional Thanksgiving celebration that usually includes eating delicious meals and having a nap after that. With the wealth of creative and captivating activities it would be very easy to get all your family involved in Thanksgiving celebration. Here are 8 great Thanksgiving activities for families to try this year.
1. Shake up your body
One of the greatest ways to have fun and spend quality family time is to take part in a local Turkey Trot. Running or walking can boost your appetite before a festive dinner. Moreover, all of you will burn some calories before you fill up your stomachs with high calorie food. Everyone in your family, from kids to grandparents, can participate in a community run or walk. While most people prefer traveling or visiting relatives on Thanksgiving, you can create a new tradition and take part in the Turkey Trot every year.
2. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade
If you’re lucky to live in NYC, you shouldn’t miss an opportunity to see this breathtaking pageant with your own eyes. What can be more fascinating for your children than watching giant balloons, clowns, marching bands and cheerleaders on the streets of New York? Learn the route of the parade and pick some comfortable spots to get the best view. After a three hour parade you can enjoy tasty food from the local restaurants and bars or just enjoy walking around the city.
If you want to join the parade, think about some fun activities and costumes to make this experience more enjoyable. If you want to get the best viewpoint, try to arrive as earlier as possible. Make sure your kids dress warmly, since the weather on Thanksgiving is often unpredictable, from sunny and warm to rather windy and stormy. A thermos of hot tea or chocolate will also help your little ones stay warm and comfy. However, enjoying the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in front of the TV is also a good way to begin the celebration at home.
3. Play games
Keep your children busy and entertained by playing indoor and outdoor games. Opt for games that are appropriate for every age group. Or, you can organize fun activities just for your little ones. If you have plenty of participants, divide them into two teams and organize a scavenger hunt for them, using some seasonal items like acorns, turkey feathers, pinecones and leaves. If you celebrate Thanksgiving in a small company, consider playing board and card games for several players. Playing Monopoly, Charade or Scrabble will make your guests and family smile and laugh all evening long.
To most people, Thanksgiving morning looks like: mom is occupied in the kitchen, dad enjoys reading or watching TV and kids have nothing to do except running around the house with their sibs. If this sounds like your usual celebration, break this wasting habit. Supply your children with arts and crafts supplies to keep them occupied while you’re busy with meal. Ask them to make festive decorations for your house and Thanksgiving table. For smaller ones, you can prepare crayons and Thanksgiving coloring pages. If you have enough time, consider making a Thanksgiving collage or centerpiece with your kids. Use natural supplies like greenery, pines, acorns and pine needles to incorporate the bounty of the season into your festive decorations.
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Playing football is a fun way to spend the day if your house if full of football fans. Use your backyard to create an improvised football pitch. Wearing a colored t-shirts and nominating a referee will create an atmosphere of a real football match.
Consider watching football, if the weather is far-from-ideal. After all, what can boost the spirit of togetherness better than sitting in front of a TV with your family and rooting for your favorite team? With a plenty of tasty dishes and drinks, it’s really a fabulous way to spend Thanksgiving evening as a family. However, if you’re not big football fans, consider playing any other game that will keep you together. Hide-and-seek and tag are also great reason to go outside with your family and get involved in noisy running.
6. Consider volunteering
Another admirable way to celebrate Thanksgiving with your family is to get involved in volunteering. It’s not necessarily to spend all day serving meal to people in need; you can spend only a few hours, but this will also make a great difference. Not only is volunteering a grateful way to give thanks, it also teaches your children to be sympathetic and compassionate.
Think about cooking or serving food at homeless shelters or delivering a meal, if you have a car. Remember about elderly people who spend this day in complete loneliness in retirement homes and hospitals. Your attention and care will help them feel the Thanksgiving cheer and happiness. Doing good deeds together will strengthen your family bonds and help you become closer.
7. Create unique family traditions
Perhaps, each family has some unique traditions. Family traditions seem to be the loveliest part of any holiday, since they are specific only to your family. When I was a child, I loved the time when my kinsfolk gorged themselves on turkey and pumpkin pie and everybody started watching football. My granny always went back to the kitchen and invited us to bake delicious holiday cookies. Somehow she managed to bake the most delicious cookies I have ever tried.
Now we celebrate Thanksgiving without her, but my granny’s cookies are still an integral part of our Thanksgiving meal. Your family can create many interesting ways to make Thanksgiving so unique to your family. You can read your family tree together, give thanks or just do something that make this Thanksgiving memorable and meaningful.
8. Stage a play
Not only will you have a great time watching your kids performing the play, it’ll also be a valuable opportunity for your children to have a history lesson and learn some facts about the first Thanksgiving. Your kids may choose to be either Native Americans or pilgrims in the play, but make sure that everyone has a role. One of the adults should be a narrator to start the play and provide some historical facts about Thanksgiving. For a more realistic atmosphere, create costumes and setting. Use various children books about Thanksgiving to write the script and help your children learn their words. Thanksgiving play is obviously a meaningful and fun activity to bring your friends and kinsfolk together after the traditional turkey dinner.
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With little effort and creativity, you can come up with numerous ways to make this Thanksgiving meaningful for the whole family. Involve your family and friends in gripping outdoor and indoor activities, start new family traditions and just enjoy the time with your nearest and dearest. After all, Thanksgiving Day is a great opportunity to become closer with your family and share the wonderful spirit of the holiday. What are your favorite Thanksgiving activities?