Some churches set up pumpkin patches for families to take pictures in during the party.
Some churches set up pumpkin patches for families to take pictures in during the party.

Churches can host fall parties to celebrate the advent of fall or as an alternative to traditional trick-or-treating activities. At these events, church members can play games, eat delicious fall-themed foods and enjoy each other’s company. Run the event carnival-style, with carnival games and fun prizes, to entertain children and adults alike.

Pumpkin Ringing

Purchase or find about 10 pumpkins with 2- or 3-inch-long stems. Set the pumpkins into a ring with one pumpkin in the middle. Tape masking tape along the ground in front of the pumpkin ring to indicate where participants should stand. Give each person three wooden embroidery hoops to throw at the pumpkins. If a contestant manages to ring a pumpkin, allow her to choose a small prize. If she rings all three hoops, give her two prizes or a special large prize.

Apple Bobbing

Apple bobbing is a fun, old-fashioned game for both children and adults. To keep the game sanitary, only allow one player at a time and empty the water between contestants. If the player manages to grab an apple without using his hands, give him a prize. If several players grab apples in a short time frame, have an apple bobbing race between the three fastest bobbers by setting up one bobbing container for each racer and awarding a prize to the first person to catch an apple.

Seed Spitting Contest

Provide each contestant with three or five fresh pumpkin seeds. You can perform this game with dried seeds, but fresh seeds are easier to spit. Have the contestants spit their seeds out at the same time. Measure the distance of the furthest seed. Give prizes for first, second and third place. Play several rounds for more fun, or allow best three out of five rules. This game is best played outdoors where you do not have to pick up the seeds after the game.

Pumpkin Roll

A pumpkin roll is a game where racers must roll a pumpkin around an obstacle course. Create a race area either outdoors or indoors by arranging several obstacles for the racers to roll their pumpkins around. The first person who can roll her pumpkin to the finish line is the winner. Alternatively, you can modify this game by making it a relay race. For this format, require that each person in the team must complete the course for that team to win. You can also make the game more challenging by requiring the racers to steer their pumpkins with brooms or sturdy sticks.