If you’re about to throw a Friendsgiving party, you’re probably asking yourself two big questions:
- “Why do they call it FRIENDSgiving and not just Thanksgiving? Should Thanksgiving be called FAMILIESgiving, then? Is this just a buzzword that marketers use to create hype around another seasonal event?”
- “Where do I start with planning my Friendsgiving party?”
We can’t help you with the first question, as our friends on our TikTok page have pointed out:
However, as Party Experts, we’re uniquely qualified to help you plan the perfect Friendsgiving party that will leave your friends feeling thankful.
Planning begins well before the party starts. If your friends are going to commit to leaving their couch for a night, they want to know what they’re in for. Should they be dressed in fancy or casual attire? Most of us have only invested in the stretchiest of materials for the past year and a half. If you want to keep it low-pressure, we recommend a tracksuit or pajama theme to allow for maximum stomach capacity.
What should they bring to the party? This can get out of hand quickly as everyone clamors to say they’ll bring a cheeseboard so they don’t have to do the hard work of combining ingredient with ingredient. We suggest making an excel spreadsheet so that it’s really clear what is taken and what gaps you need to fill. Don’t be afraid to dictate the list and back Kelsey into a corner with the mashed potatoes. And, it never hurts to have two people bringing dinner rolls. Warm, buttery, soft dinner rolls. I could eat eight right now….
Ahem. What about arrival time? As party host, you should be prepared for everyone to arrive anywhere from 25-45 minutes AFTER the time you indicated. But at the same time, you have to be prepared for that one guy to be there five minutes early. Have some conversation starters ready.
Don’t be afraid to embrace themed decorations. Good ambiance can really set the tone of a Friendsgiving party. Think about your personal brand and what you want to convey to your guests as they enjoy the night. If you want to keep it classy, put a gourd on every surface and light a candle. We have also heard that cloth napkins are a thing that classy people use and appreciate.
If you’d like to reject the concept of Thanksgiving outright, embrace a Jimmy Buffett-themed party and transport your guests to the Gulf of Florida with paper umbrellas and parrots. Leave your shoes (and your cares) at the door.
If you want to kick it up a notch, take a note from some of our Twitch team streamers like TipsyTune and gamify your entire evening while wearing an extremely shiny blazer.
Create your party playlist. Speaking of tunes, if your guests walk into a quiet home when they think they’re walking into a party, that’s a quick way to make sure they’ll be home by 9:00 sharp. Jackbox Party Pack soundtracks (on Spotify, Apple Music, and Bandcamp) make for the perfect background music. If people start compulsively swaying and grooving mid-conversation, we can’t help that those albums are packed with bangers.
It can also be helpful to create a playlist beforehand and then share it with your guests to contribute to before and during the party. That way, they can’t blame you when “Son of a Son of a Sailor” starts playing for the third time in three hours. Slowly transferring ownership over key party elements can also be a great way to reduce post-party analysis anxiety.
Play some pumpkin spiced party games. Some say Friendsgiving is all about the food, but let’s not get it twisted. Games are the true glue of a good Friendsgiving, and we’ve got you covered.
When choosing the right Friendsgiving party game, you’ll want to consider your group size.
Maybe you already have a lot of friends (okay, brag) or maybe your intimate gathering just snowballed in size with a slew of “hey, is it okay if my boyfriend and his roommate come?” texts. If you’re planning a large Friendsgiving, you should consider playing The Poll Mine or Bracketeering.
The Poll Mine, a brand new game in The Jackbox Party Pack 8, will allow you and friends to form two teams and test your knowledge of each others’ opinions. Get ready for heated discussions and finding out your groups’ weirdest takes. The Poll Mine supports up to 10 players in each game, and also allows for a large audience.
In Bracketeering, up to 16 players will submit answers to bizarre questions, forming the ultimate bracket. Your group will duke it out tournament-style to choose an ultimate winner. If you’ve got a large, competitive group of friends, you can’t go wrong with either of these picks.
Now, let’s talk about games for a more intimate Friendsgiving. In my opinion, the single best game for a group of 3 is Blather ‘Round. This game is great fun for your pop culture fiend buddies. Trivia games like The Wheel of Enormous Proportions will get the post-carb energy flowing in your small group.
Job Job is a fantastic party game pick for your Friendsgiving, no matter the group size. You’ll be prompted to answer interview questions by stringing together words from other players. This is a surefire game to get your group laughing.
Thnks fr th mmrs. End on a strong note. If you get that reference, congratulations, we are now friends. I expect an invite to your Friendsgiving.
Holidays like Thanksgiving can uh… allow us to get ourselves into… certain states of mind after consuming certain things. Tryptophan. I’m talkin’ turkey, people!
Planning ahead of time can allow you to savor your memories from the night, so you can end on a strong note.
Designate a photobooth for friends to take pictures in throughout the night. (A pre and post-pie pic comparison is sure to win Instagram). Encourage your friends to share these memories by setting up a shared photo album ahead of time on icloud or google photos. You could also create a unique hashtag in order to find all your Friendsgiving posts in one place.
Thoughtful momentos can bring your Friendsgiving hosting to the next level. Prep some tupperware for your guests to take home leftovers in. Consider having extra blankets and pillows around if the night gets a little too rowdy (again…tryptophan). Play a game of Tee K.O. and order your funny Friendsgiving t-shirts after the game – perfect to wear to next year’s party.
You’re doing amazing, sweetie
Honestly, the fact that you’re even reading this article means that you’re a thoughtful friend. Your friends should be thankful for YOU this Thanksgiving. And you can quote me on that.
Get a few things set up in advance, make sure everyone feels safe and welcome, and you’re good to go.
If you’re planning on incorporating our games into your Friendsgiving, you should check out all of these amazing Black Friday deals.
We’d love to see pics from your Friendsgiving! Share your funny moments and game screenshots with us on social media. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok for more tips like this and to stay updated on all of our holiday deals.