Every year on the 31st of October, my family goes to a Harvest Festival. Many churches host them as an alternative to Halloween, where the children can still dress up in costumes and get candy. But better than that, we’ve done lots of fun activities as well. From pony rides to jumpy castles, there are usually enough activities to last the whole evening. The best Harvest Festivals will have carnival-style games where the children can increase their skills in their hand-eye coordination. Hands down, the best booth we ever went to a couple of years ago was with an Air Soft gun, popping balloons. That was so super fun!
Other booth activities have been a version of put-put golf, bowling, ring toss, and bean bag toss. Where else will a kid get to play these classic games without paying a single penny? Kids go fishing at a fishing booth, and a prize appears on the other side of the fishing pole. (I always loved that activity when I was a young child.)
Last night we even went on a hay ride as a family! That’s a first. I thought to myself, how exciting can it be to ride around a church parking lot? But the driver was funny. He drove right up to the trees and made sure everyone had to duck and squeal with laughter as we rode around. Western music was playing, and the smell of real hay was very strong. It made you feel like you were at a farm.
Other fun activities over the years have been face painting, pumpkin carving, cake walks, puppet shows, a jail (I don’t know exactly what that was for), petting zoos, photo booths, and many, many variations on carnival games. One church actually had their booths in the shape of the city of Jerusalem. That was the best, as far as a cohesive theme is concerned, and as an ex-drama director, I’ll give that one the highest score.