7 Fun Halloween Activities and Games That Are Family-Friendly
Halloween Party Ideas: Games, Activities, and More
Every year, our family has a Halloween party, and it's always a spooky blast. I'd like to share with you a few of the fun things we've done over the years. I've included instructions on how to play a few of our favorite games including capture the witch, eyeball racing, and mummy-wrap racing. Also included are costume contest tips and an easy jack-o-lantern crafting activity. We always end the night by watching one of our favorite Halloween movies! I hope these ideas help you plan a spooktastic party for your family and friends.
7 Halloween Party Games and Activities
- Eyeball Race
- Capture the Witch
- Mummy-Wrapping Race
- Costume Contest
- One-House Trick-Or-Treating
- Jack-O-Lantern Face Crafting
- Halloween Movie Time
1. Eyeball Race
This game is a variation of the classic egg-on-a-spoon relay race. The object of the eyeball race is to be the first to carry your "eyeball" on a spoon, without touching or dropping it, past the finish line.
- Kitchen spoons (one per player/team)
- Eyeballs (use gumballs or chocolates with eyeball wrappers or draw eyeballs on blank ping pong balls)
- Mark off a starting line and a finish line about 50 feet apart.
- Give all participants an eyeball and a spoon.
- Instruct participants to place their eyeball on their spoon.
- Inform players that the object of the game is to race to the finish line without touching or dropping their eyeballs.
- Have someone stationed at the finish line to determine who wins in the case of a close race.
- Start the race!
2. Capture the Witch
This game may be simple, but it's loads of fun. Capture the witch is a spooky spin on the classic tossing contest.
- Witch's hat
- Frisbee with a hole in the center
The hat should be easy to find at this time of year, and you probably already have a Frisbee on hand. I usually store these with my Halloween decorations so I have them ready each year.
- Players must stand a set distance away from the witch's hat (stand farther away if playing with only adults; stand closer if playing with children).
- The object of the game is to throw the Frisbee and have it land over the point of the witches hat.
- Everyone gets 3 (or 5, or 10) tries throwing the Frisbee.
- If the frisbee lands on (or is touching) the hat's brim, 5 points are awarded.
- If the frisbee lands over the point of the hat, it "captures the witch" and 20 points are awarded.
- The person with the most points after everyone has completed their turns wins the game.
You can use a different point system if you like because we just made this up. There will still be a winner even if no one makes a capture. Everyone in my family gave this game a go, and despite some troublesome gusts of wind, we all had a blast! To keep the hat from blowing away, we placed a rock on its brim. This game can also be played inside if you have enough space.
3. Mummy-Wrapping Race
The object of the mummy-wrapping race is to be the first to finish completely wrapping your "mummy" in toilet paper within a set time limit.
- Plenty of toilet paper (strong, double-ply TP works best)
- Clear a spot large enough for everyone participating to have plenty of room to wrap their "mummy." If space is limited, consider playing outside.
- Break up into teams of two. One team member will be the mummy and the other will be the wrapper. If younger children are playing, feel free to use two wrappers per mummy.
- Give each wrapper two rolls of toilet paper.
- Explain that the object of the race is to be the first player to completely wrap their partner in toilet paper.
- Start the race and use a timer to keep track of when each team finishes.
- Wrappers can wrap their mummies from head to toe or toe to head. Mummies can keep arms at their sides and their feet together for easier wrapping.
- The first player to finish wrapping their mummy wins the race!
- Other players should continue wrapping and compete for second and third places.
Be sure not to obstruct anyone's breathing. Don't wrap toilet paper tightly over players' noses or mouths. Do not use saran wrap, tape, or other strong materials in place of toilet paper.
4. Costume Contest
A costume contest is a fun thing to do at any Halloween party. Usually, only a few members of our family dress up, and the others vote for their favorite. To help out the voters, we usually create a few categories. This way, everyone in the contest is assured a prize! It's just for fun anyway, and the kids like the suspense.
Example Costume Contest Categories
- Cutest costume
- Scariest costume
- Most original costume
The Results of Our Family's Costume Contest
- Most Scary: Douglas as Darth Vader
- Most Original: Lacey as Countess of Deadwood Manor
- Cutest: Scottie as Buddy Holly
Which costume is your favorite?
5. One-House Trick-Or-Treating
Every year, we have what we call "one-house trick-or-treating." The "one house" is mine! You've probably never heard of such a thing and may think it's a crazy idea. We started it when my oldest grandchild, Scottie, was little, and his mother didn't want to take him out to trick-or-treat in the neighborhood.
My son (Scottie's uncle Brian) didn't want him to miss out on the fun of going door to door, so he came up with the idea of going to several different doors inside of our own house. Scottie loved it! We have now been doing one-house trick-or-treat for about 20 years.
- Pick out several outside and inside doors of your house that you want to use for this game.
- Each door will be considered a different "house" (don't worry, kids are good at pretending).
- Plan an order for visiting the doors.
- Station individuals at each door to give out treats. You can run between all the doors yourself, but it's much easier if you have multiple people to man the different doors.
- Door openers should make silly conversation and pretend that they have never seen the kids before. Use your imagination to make it more fun.
- Have the kids go to each door (in the order you've established), knock, then yell "trick or treat!"
- Each door opener should give each child a treat.
- The child should then proceed to the next door until they have visited every door in the sequence.
How We Did It at My House
Anyone that is trick-or-treating starts out at my front door, knocks, yells trick-or-treat, and I give them a treat. Next, they walk on over to the side door and repeat the process. Then they go to the back door. I always act like I've never seen them before and compliment them on their costumes. After all the outside doors are done, they come inside and trick-or-treat at most of my inside doors. I have to rush to get behind each door before they get there. It helps to have more than one person as a door opener.
One year, my daughter helped me with alternate doors. In between knocks, she actually changed clothes, and when the children knocked at the next door, she pretended to be someone entirely different. She spoke with different accents at each door, too. I have to tell you, it was super funny and totally unexpected.
You can ad-lib and make this into a highly entertaining event. My son Brian always has me give him a bogus treat—like rocks or something silly—or refuse to give him a treat at all. That makes it more fun for the little ones. Also, changing up who or what "answers the door" makes this activity extra exciting.
If you have very young children, I recommend your family try this instead of going out in the neighborhood. You'll know it's safe, and children of any age can participate.
6. Jack-O-Lantern Face Crafting
This is a fun craft activity to do at your Halloween party and is great for folks of all ages. If you don't want to carve real pumpkins, make crafty jack-o-lantern faces at home using common and inexpensive supplies!
- Solid orange paper plates
- Stick-on jack-o-lantern face parts
- Clear the surface of a large table that everyone can sit around.
- Pass out orange paper plates to each participant.
- Spread a pile of jack-o-lantern face parts around the center of the table.
- Get crafting!
I was able to get the items necessary for this activity at my local dollar store. If you can't find stick-on face parts, you can provide your guests with black construction paper, scissors, and non-toxic glue so they can make their own. My grandchildren Lacey and Douglas had fun getting creative and decorating their plates as jack-o-lanterns. After the party, they took them home to hang in their rooms!
7. Halloween Movie Time
The last thing we do at our Halloween party is watch a holiday-themed movie. After all the food has been eaten and the games have been played, the kids all climb on my bed and watch a Halloween movie on my big-screen television.
We usually end up airing a Scooby-Doo Halloween movie. Sometimes we buy a new release, and other times we rent an older one from the library. Now it's time to relax, watch a movie, and eat popcorn! What a fun party we've had!
Did These Activities Give You Some Ideas?
In this article, I've shared some of the Halloween games and activities my family has done over the years, including eyeball racing, capture the witch, mummy-wrap racing, costume contests, jack-o-lantern face crafting, and Halloween movie time. I hope you have lots of fun trying out these ideas at your own party.
Questions & Answers
Do the kids keep the gumballs and eat them in the Eyeball Race or not?
Usually, the gumballs or eyeball candy is wrapped. If you leave it wrapped it would be ok for them to keep and eat. However, you might want to unwrap the ones you use for the game, in which case you would just throw them away. There should be plenty in the bag to give each child a few after the game.Helpful 8
© 2012 Faye Rutledge