Perhaps you’re saving your holiday trip home for Christmas, and so you want to celebrate Thanksgiving with your friends. The first Friendsgiving I ever hosted was my first Thanksgiving away from my family, in college, and I was so sad about it initially—but ended up having a wonderful time!
Maybe you and your friends want to have a Friendsgiving at another time during the week, even though you’ll be spending the holiday with your family. Whatever the reason, these tips will help you pull off an awesome Friendsgiving!
1. Send out invites well in advance. This is a very busy time of year for almost everyone. Throw a few dates out to the group a few weeks before Thanksgiving and see what works best for most people.
2. Have everyone pitch in. Pulling off a giant meal for a lot of people is a huge task. It’s more likely to be successful and fun if you have a potluck. Create a sign-up list so you don’t have duplicates, and it allows everyone to bring their specialty items. This is also a great way to allow your friends from other cultures to introduce new foods to the group!
3. Get creative with the decor. There are many fun and inexpensive ways to decorate for Thanksgiving. Pumpkins and cornucopias are always a go-to. Fall leaves and flowers are adorable as well. Check out more awesome ideas here.
4. Get even more creative with the food options. Of course, the traditional turkey, stuffing, rolls, mashed potatoes, casseroles and pies will crush with the crowd! But festive appetizers and desserts are just the thing to add some flair to the spread. Check out 10 Quick and Easy Thanksgiving Recipes You Can Try!
5. Pray together before eating. This can be a wonderful witnessing and ministry opportunity! Ask if anyone has anything specific that they would like for the group to include in the prayer. Then hold hands. It might be awkward for a minute, but it will be a very intimate and special moment. Pray aloud and thank God for the blessings He has given!
6. Say what you are all thankful for. You might worry that this one will be cheesy, but in the end, it really makes the day more genuine and purposeful. You could either go around the room and have everyone mention a few things or set up a cute little DIY station where people write it down.
7. Serve your guests. This is a wonderful opportunity for you to be the hands and feet of Christ! Use your hospitality to make sure everyone is comfortable and satisfied. Once everyone is in their seats, make sure you enjoy the meal and the fellowship as well!
8. Have a few awesome group games waiting on deck for after the meal. Once everyone has eaten, it’s the perfect time to have some fun! Here are a few of our favorite activities for large groups (some are board games and some you create yourself): Catch Phrase, The Game of Things, Apples to Apples, “The Bowl Game,” Pictionary and, if you have a yard or park nearby, flag football!
Are you having or going to a Friendsgiving this year? Any tips we forgot?