Looking to throw a pilgrim theme party this Thanksgiving but unsure of where to start? Look no further! We have compiled a list of all sorts of party ideas full of pilgrim activities and how-to ideas. From favors to games to menus, we have you covered for all of your pilgrim theme needs.
Before the Event
Depending on what kind of guests are attending the party, it might be fun to have everyone dress up! Have everyone dress in black and white or just have them wear the quintessential pilgrim hat! Either way, dressing the part is a great way to get into the spirit of the party!
Be sure to also check out our ideas for a wild west themed party!
Creating a photo opportunity is a great way to capture the moment. This is easily done with a backdrop. The backdrop can be simple solid colors like orange or brown, or it could be a pattern like a farm or fall leaves. Make sure to have props that people can pose with. Have stuff like mustaches, hats, cornucopias, and more! A photo op is a great way to create fun, lasting memories.
Pilgrim Theme Party Menu Ideas
1. How to serve
When the pilgrims first sat down to eat their meal, all the food was set out at once, not in different courses. So at your party, set all of the food out on the table together, instead of bringing it out as separate courses. That way, guests can pick and choose what they want to eat.
2. Follow the Seasons
Back in the 1600s, the food at the table mirrored the season. If it is summer or fall, put berries and a variety of salads on the menu. If it is winter or spring, have winter squash, mandarines, sweet potato, and other foods from the opposite side of the equator!
3. Colonists’ Provision
Biscuits, beer, salt, oats, peas, dried beef, salt pork, wheat, butter, sweet oil, mustard seed, ling or codfish, “good cheese”, vinegar, aqua-vitae, rice, bacon, and cider were some of the foods colonists first brought with them when coming to North America. If you want to be more historically correct, try making foods with those ingredients!
4. Native Products
Pilgrims also made use of the foods that were initially present in North America. Indian corn, beans, and squash, also known as “The Three Sisters” were the most common Native Products. Additionally, pilgrims made use of dairy products, oats, pumpkins, wheat, spinach, and carrots. If you want to keep up the native theme, serve these foods.
5. Typical Thanksgiving
Typical Thanksgiving food is always great to serve at a pilgrim theme party. turkey and stuffing are a must, no matter the season!
6. Other Meats
Ham, chicken, beef were as common back in the 1600s as they are now. Salting or smoking the foods is an option if going for a more historically accurate pilgrim party!
The perfect ending to most Thanksgiving meals: pie! Give your guests an array of pies to choose from to end their meal. Home-baked style bread is also great!
Pilgrim Theme Party Games
8. The Thanks Game
This is a lighthearted and silly game to play at your pilgrim-theme party. Each guest brings an item that they are thankful for, but it has to be silly or zany, like ice cream or turtleneck sweaters. Then, the person to their left must complete what they’re thankful for. Continue this game and watch as the gifts get wilder and wilder! These types of games and activities are perfect for the younger ones and it’s easy to explain how to play.
9. Traditional Pilgrim Games
Hide and Seek, Tic Tac Toe, and Checkers were all popular games in the colonies. Look up the “original” names of these games, and have the players guess the modern equivalent. There’s plenty of products at online retailers that already themed appropriately!
10. Theme Bingo
Look online to find Thanksgiving or pilgrim-theme bingo cards. If the guests are interested, teach them some history about the images on the cards. The winner gets a pilgrim-style hat!
Before your party, gather some interesting facts about Thanksgiving, Native American Foods, pilgrims, or Plimoth, and have a (highly educational) game of trivia!
12. Scavenger Hunt
Play a scavenger hunt at your pilgrim-theme party! Create a list of items that your guests need to find from leaves to footballs. The winner gets to keep some of the things they find!
Pilgrim Theme Party Favors
The perfect favors to give your guest that goes along with your theme – pilgrim hats! You can find these at most party stores around Thanksgiving. You can also find instructions online to make these out of paper!
14. Corn and Apples
Give your guests some typical fall candy – candy corn and caramelized apples! Apple cider and popcorn could be another option!
Pies, cookies, bread- all go great with the theme of your party. Look up some native/pilgrim recipes if you want to go beyond the traditional pumpkin flavor!
16. Pilgrim Toys
Look up some of the toys kids in the 1600s used to play with. They’re still available to purchase, and aren’t too difficult to make yourself! You might be surprised at the wide array of variety.
Now that it’s fall, you can start enjoying all of your favorite flavors of the season! You don’t even have to limit them to fall. Have a pilgrim-theme party at any time of year! From games to food, to party favors, your party will be a blast! Remember to take lots of pictures. I hope these ideas have inspired some more great ideas for your next party!