Unlike Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving isn’t celebrated on a designated day. Friendsgiving can be celebrated any day of the year. Although the most popular time to celebrate is the week before Thanksgiving or the week after.
What is Friendsgiving?
Friendsgiving is a mash-up of the words friend and thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a day to celebrate blessings and is traditionally spent with the family eating roast turkey and pumpkin pie.
Friendsgiving shares the same sentiment, but instead of celebrating with family, this party is a friend’s only zone.
I’m not trying to reinvent the word again, I promise. But for those who feel more comfortable celebrating Friendsgiving at a distance this year, a virtual party is the next best thing.
Why not hold a competition to see who can make themselves the best Friendsgiving dinner? Or give a prize to the best-looking pumpkin pie.
If you and your friends do decide to celebrate via Zoom, you can still make it a fabulous celebration by using some of the ideas suggested below.
2. Pick a theme
Choosing a theme for a party is always a great idea. That way, everyone knows what to expect, and everyone knows what the dress code is supposed to be.
If you love Halloween, you could keep up with the spooky festivities and have a Halloween themed party. You could even do some pumpkin carving with your friends.
Or if comfort is your thing, try throwing a Friendsgiving pajama party. That way, you don’t even have to get dressed that day. I’m sure everyone will thank you for the comfortable clothing option after they’ve stuffed their faces full of goodies.
3. Throw a make-your-own-hat party
Challenge everyone to get a bit creative and make their own hat. The more flamboyant, the better!
You could go down the turkey theme and design a hat that looks like a turkey. Stick some sprouts and stuffing balls around the edges.
You could decide to go patriotic and cover it in pictures of the American flag. Or bedazzle everyone by covering your hat with colorful rhinestones.
4. Organize games
Games at any party is a must, in my humble opinion. But even more so when it’s a Friendsgiving party.
You could dust off those board games from the attic, or you could go with some of the more classic choices, such as a friendly game of Pictionary or Charades.
Why not get everyone on their feet with a game of pin the feather on the turkey. Or, sticking with the turkey theme, why not get a turkey pinata!
5. Serve up some delicious food
It goes without saying that food is an integral part of Friendsgiving. It’s basically the main event!
The traditional meal eaten on Thanksgiving consists of roast turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, vegetables, gravy, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie.
But this is Friendsgiving, not Thanksgiving, so you can go ahead and eat whatever you want if you want to go down the traditional route; that’s great. But if what you want is a pizza party or a pancake party, then that is also great.
6. Get everyone involved
Preparing dinner for a group of friends can be intimidating and overwhelming. Why not try getting everyone involved by throwing a potluck?
You provide the turkey, and they can provide the sides. If it’s a pizza party or a pancake party, then you can provide the base, and they can provide the toppings.
7. Friendsgiving desserts
There’s always room for dessert!
Pumpkin pie is a traditional choice, but you could always mix it up a bit by trying a new recipe. Perhaps an apple pie, a pecan pie or even a good old cheesecake!
Ice cream is always a winner. Why not create your own ice-cream-sundae-bar. Again, you provide the ice-cream, and your friends can provide the toppings.
8. Friendsgiving brunch
Whoever said Friendsgiving had to be an evening meal? If you and your friends want to celebrate by having Friendsgiving brunch, then go right ahead.
You could serve up waffles with fruit and honey, blueberry muffins or a more classic breakfast-style option such as bacon and eggs.
If you have a buffet-style breakfast, everyone can get involved by bringing a little something along for the table. Finger foods are great for parties.
9. Bring leftover containers
When catering to a party, it’s always better to have too much food than too little food. However, this can sometimes result in having a lot of food wastage which isn’t great for the environment.
Why not help the environment and save yourself some money by bringing food containers to the party? This way, you can take some leftovers home with you, and you won’t have to think about what your next meal is going to be.
If you’re the host of the party, make sure you suggest it to everyone when inviting them so that nobody has to feel awkward about the situation.
10. Create a cozy nap station
I don’t know about you, but after a huge meal, all I want to do is a nap. A nap station could turn out to be a big hit at a party that serves a lot of food, especially if you’ve decided on a pajama party theme.
Get some big cushions, some cozy blankets and pile them in a corner. Perhaps you’ve got some beanbags you could throw in the mix. You could even put up some fairy lights for some mood lighting.
Make a cozy, comfy corner that people are free to go to if they need a little post-meal snooze. This saves anyone from having to go home and miss the rest of the party. They can have a nap to rejuvenate and then get right back to the festivities.
11. Watch movies
You could combine this with your nap station. Perhaps your chillout area has movies playing for those who just can’t handle the pace of the party.
Or perhaps you and your friends are actually film buffs, and an entire movie party is more your vibe. Have a selection of movies at hand and get everyone to vote on which one they’d like to watch.
Or have a movie marathon and watch your favorite trilogy together. And rather than turkey and pumpkin pie, you can serve hotdogs and popcorn instead.
12. Drinks, drinks, drinks!
Drinks can become expensive at a party, especially for those wanting to drink alcohol. Suggest to your guests that they each bring a bottle of their favorite beverage with them then you can provide soft drinks such as soda and juice.
A cocktail station is a fun idea. You could suggest that everyone brings a bottle of spirits to the party and you’ll provide ice, mixers and fruits to garnish.
It might also be a good idea to provide plastic cups as this will save on the amount of washing up that will inevitably need to be done.
13. Make a playlist
Is it even a party without music? If the drinks are flowing and people are feeling in the party mood, music is a must. If you and your friends like a bit of a boogie, then create a list full of feel-good dance numbers.
Even if you don’t intend to get up and dance, it’s still nice to have background music for when your guests arrive and to cover any awkward silences during your party.
If you’ve gone with a theme, make sure to match your music to your theme.
14. Start a new tradition
Each family have their own traditions for Thanksgiving, so it only seems right that you and your friends start your own traditions for Friendsgiving.
It could be something inspired by one of the suggestions above. Such as always celebrating at brunch time or always having a hat-making competition. Or it could be something that comes along organically on the day.
Perhaps you took a great group photo, and it’s now your mission to re-create it every year. Maybe you took a beautiful walk together after dinner and vow to take that walk every time you celebrate Friendsgiving.
Having a tradition makes Friendsgiving more special as it’s something completely unique shared only between you and your friends.
15. Say what you’re thankful for
Saving the best for last. This is the most important part of the day where everyone declares what they’re most thankful for.
This could be done in a circle around the dinner table where you take it one person at a time to tell the rest of the group the things you’re most thankful for.
If people are feeling self-conscious about having all eyes on them, you could ask everyone to write down what they’re thankful for, and a more confident member of the group could read them out.
Gratitude is something you can practice on your own every single day. But there is something extra special about sharing such a beautiful moment with your closest friends.