Halloween Carnival Games

jack 'o lantern

Halloween carnival games for kids can be a terrific way to include children of different ages during the month of October. Whether it is a family fall celebration or an age-specific Halloween party for kids, costumes and games make the event special. Here are some inexpensive Halloween carnival games and party ideas to get the ball rolling.

Six Fun Halloween Carnival Games for Kids

Have kids make posters for each game with bright colors, glitter, and ghoulish looking characters. Paper tickets and costumes add to the fun and fright. Adults can dress for the event adding even more fun.

1. Ghoulish Ring Toss Game

This Halloween carnival game for kids, allows children to take aim and toss. Use two liter bottles or any kind of soda. Line three, six, or nine bottles of soda in equal rows with spaces between the bottles with enough room for the rings to fit over the tops. Use old embroidery hoops for the tossing rings. Mark a line for the child to stand at when tossing the rings. Decide how many chances each child gets for each ticket. Does she win the soda or will you give out some other token for the winner? Try making coupons to cash in at the refreshment table in place of prizes to keep costs under control.

2. Face Painting Game

Face paints come in a kit and are typically found in stores where Halloween costumes are sold. Priced from two to twenty dollars, face paints come in a variety of colors and are perfect for painting young faces. Look for nontoxic and hypo-allergenic face paint to avoid causing skin irritation. Tiny pumpkins, ghosts, spiders, or bugs are easy to draw on little cheeks and make a Halloween carnival a spectacular event. An older child can take a turn painting on the younger kids or an artistic adult may step up to the challenge. The face painting may be the prize for the winner of one of the other games, or it can be a Halloween carnival game where everyone is a winner walking away with a painted cheek.

3. Fishing in the Green Lagoon Game

The green lagoon can be a large bucket with water dyed green or a small wading pool. Set the bucket of water on top of a plastic garbage bag or piece of plastic to protect the flooring if the carnival is not held out on the lawn. Tie a three-foot length of string to the end of a pencil or short stick. Tie a loop on the end of the string. Using floating bath toys in the shape of fish or ducks, each child tries to get the loop of his fishing line around the neck of the floating fish or duck. The child who can move his line to secure the floating toy wins the game. Coupons for refreshments or small trinkets can serve as the prize.

An alternative to having a stick and string might be to have several floating rubber ducks in the bucket/lagoon. Place numbers on the bottom of each duck. The child would pick a duck and the number on the duck would match a specific prize. Number one might be a Halloween pencil, number two another trinket, and so on. Another alternative would be to keep all the ducks plain and put a number or dot on only one duck. In that case, not every child would win a prize. The child choosing the duck with the dot would be a winner.

4. Ghost Buckets Game

Line five white plastic buckets in a vertical row six inches apart. Number them from one to five. The child stands one foot away from the first bucket. Using a ping pong ball, the child takes a chance throwing the ball into bucket number one, then bucket number two, three, four, and five. Give prizes for each bucket or one prize or coupon for the completed game. White buckets can be recycled ice cream buckets or trick or treat plastic totes. Use a black marker to make ghost faces on each bucket to add Halloween spunk to the game.

5. Bowling for Spiders or Eyeballs Game

Use a plastic kiddy bowling set or ten empty two liter soda bottles and a large plastic lightweight ball for this Halloween carnival game. Set the kiddy pins or the soda bottles up to resemble a real bowling alley placing the pins several feet from where the bowler will begin. Each child will take two turns to toss the ball in an attempt to knock over all ten pins. Pass out spider rings or gum balls that look like eyeballs for each contestant. Spider rings and eyeball looking gum balls are easy to find in the candy aisle during the month of October. These ghoulish prizes will be a win- win especially for older children.

6. Sweet Treats Game

Halloween carnival games for kids wouldn't be complete without a refreshment table or candy walk. Cups of fruit cut into bite size pieces with orange holiday marshmallows are an easy treat. Children can help make chocolate cupcakes with orange frosting or brownies with orange and brown sprinkles as an easy treat to serve as well. Rice Krispie treats, popcorn balls, orange sherbet punch, corn candy and peanuts also make great Halloween munchies for kids.

Frosted sugar cookies in the shape of Halloween images can be decorated as a game/activity at the carnival. Provide a variety of colored frostings and sprinkles for children to choose from to make a take home treat.

A candy or sweet treat walk game can be set up by placing twelve colorful squares of paper in a large circle. Number each square with the numbers from one to twelve. Have an adult play music for a few minutes as the players walk the circle of numbered papers. When the music stops, pick a number, and whoever is standing on the chosen number will win a treat from the refreshment table.

Have a Great Halloween Carnival

Imagination and a little planning can make a Halloween carnival event a tremendous amount of fun for kids of all ages.

Halloween Carnival Games