Family Scavenger Hunt:
The smell of crayons and freshly sharpened pencils. Orange falling leaves and yellow mums. Stadium lights and hayrides. Fall is my favorite. The autumn season is full of excitement, and it is a great opportunity to spend some extra-special time with the family.
One of my favorite events as a kid was the annual church scavenger hunt. We would pile up in cars and run crazy around town trying to check off our list. It was an excuse to be silly and competitive—all in good fun, of course.
Treat your family to a fall scavenger hunt or plan one with church families.
You will need enough people to divide up into three or more teams with at least one adult on each team. Each team will need a scavenger hunt list, a pen or pencil, and a camera or phone for taking pictures. Other helpful items to consider are water bottles for participants, a clipboard to hold the list, and a flashlight if needed.
Each team will travel around the neighborhood or city and take pictures of team members with the items on the list. Encourage teams to get creative with their photos. For example, don’t just take a picture of a scarecrow, but have your team get in the photo, pretending to be scarecrows as well. The goal is to have as much fun as possible.
Give everyone a certain time period to complete as many of the tasks as possible on the list. At the designated time, meet for a bonfire. Roast hot dogs and marshmallows and share your funny stories from the night. You can even download pictures and watch a slideshow of each team’s pics.
Scavenger Hunt List:
- A field with a hay bale
- A pumpkin
- A can of pumpkin
- A scarecrow
- A sunflower
- A produce stand
- A farmer
- Best fall front porch
- Jumping in a leaf pile
- Climbing a tree
- A football field
- A fall tree
- A school bus
- An acorn
- A barn
- Three orange leaves
Family Harvest Festival:
You can create an indoor festival for your kids to enjoy with normal household items you may already have.
* RING TOSS—Set up two-liter soda bottles (with soda still in them for weight) in varying distances. Use a glow-in-the-dark necklace as the rings. Try to toss the necklace onto the soda bottles.
* BOBBING FOR APPLES—Fill a large shallow bucket (or the bathtub) with water and add apples. Laugh ‘til you cry as everyone takes turns trying to snag an apple using only their mouths! (If you are uncomfortable with the germ-level of bobbing for apples, as an alternative you can tie the apple stem to one end of a string and tie the other end of the string onto a broomstick or other item that will suspend the apple. The participant can stand or kneel with hands behind his back and try to catch the dangling apple in his mouth.)
* BEAN BAG TOSS—Place three containers like bowls, boxes or even wastebaskets varying distances from the contestant. Try to toss beanbags into each container.
* TOILET PAPER TOSS—Stack rolls of toilet paper to make a pyramid. Contestant will use a pair of socks rolled into a ball to try and knock down the pyramid.
* FACE PAINTING—Use washable craft paint to create designs on your children’s faces. Go simple or elaborate. Search the Internet for examples.
* PILLOWCASE RACE—Everyone grabs their pillow case. Put your feet inside just like a sack race. First one to cross the finish line wins! (Not recommended for wood or tile floors.) Finish the night with a cakewalk where everyone’s a winner.
This article appears courtesy of ParentLife magazine and was written by Vanessa Dolberry. Vanessa is a freelance writer who lives in Nashville, Tennessee. She is a pastor’s wife and mom to three amazing kids.