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While you’re busy in the kitchen whipping up a feast, entertain the children with a fun and easy Thanksgiving Game: Turkey Bowling! You can prepare the “pins” in advance in a matter of minutes, or you can let the older children get crafty. Either way, this is a fun Thanksgiving activity for kids that gets everyone up, moving, and laughing!

Turkey Bowling Thanksgiving Game for Kids with Text Overlay

With Thanksgiving just a few weeks away, it’s time to start thinking about the big day! And while so many of us tend to focus only on the food, let’s not forget about the little ones! After all, you’ll likely be spending quite a bit of time with the kids in the days surrounding the holiday, so wouldn’t it be nice to have a simple new activity to play with them? This Turkey Bowling is perfect for just about any age!

Turkey Bowling Game for Thanksgiving close up image of plastic cups

You can probably look at my pictures and see how I created the turkey pins, but here’s a quick list of supplies that you will need:

  • Large brown plastic cups (I used these)
  • Paint sample strips in a variety of colors (I picked up the red, green, and yellow “feathers” for free at Lowes — they already had the pointed top, but you could cut your strips in any feather-like shape)
  • Plastic googly eyes (like these)
  • Orange construction paper cut into the shape of triangles for the turkeys’ beaks
  • Glue (I used a hot glue gun, but I also tried it with regular school glue. The hot glue gun dries much faster, but the regular glue also works)
  • Tape (to attach the feathers to the cups)
  • A bowling “ball” (we used mini pumpkins that were leftover from Halloween, but a tennis ball or a similar round object would also work)

Stack of plastic cups for Turkey Bowling Thanksgiving Game for kids

My boys loved this game, and I only managed to take a few pictures of them playing because I was laughing so hard.

Child holding mini pumpkin for Turkey Bowling game

You can stack your turkeys in a pyramid shape as shown in a photo above, but on this particular day it was so windy that our pins kept blowing over! Instead, we opted for a more traditional bowling shape…

Turkey Plastic Cups set up for Turkey Bowling Game for Thanksgiving

The idea is to roll the pumpkin (or ball) at the turkeys to see how many you can knock down or move; however, Casey and Spence thought that it would be much more effective to just use an overarm throw! Um, yes…that definitely knocked over some turkeys!

Child playing turkey bowling game on Thanksgiving

When he wasn’t launching pumpkins himself, Spence stood on the sidelines, munched on his snack, and tried to avoid flying objects…

Child holding snacks outside

Enjoy the holiday, and have fun celebrating with the little ones!

Close up image of turkey bowling thanksgiving game for kids



Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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  1. This is the cutest game, Blair! I love this! I have a few younger kids on my husband’s side who would adore this, especially since they could use a mini pumpkin as a ball. I’m definitely remembering this for Thanksgiving!

      1. Hi Blair,

        I love this activity. And I admire your concept of the power of a simple homemade meal. Infact I too had written a post on homemade food some time back, and I completely understand the importance of the same. But that’s not the reason I write to you today.

        I have an app that allows me to compile pics and videos into a single story, and publish it. I was preparing some stuff for Thanksgiving and was wondering if you would like to have this activity and/or other such activities, or recipes posted in the form of videos. I would love to feature you and your posts therein. It will be completely my privilege!

        Do let me know if you would be interested?