ABC and 123: A Learning Collaborative: Planning a Fall Fam Fest

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Planning a Fall Fam Fest

We have a very large extended family.  There are so many cousins for our children to get to know and it is rare we all get to spend time together.  Spurred on by a conversation with my Gram our family decided to organize the 1st fall family festival ~ Fam Fest '13!  After putting some time into planning a fun afternoon with our family we are hoping to inspire you to do the same.
Photo Booth Ideas & Props

After our time at Family Forward, we knew it wouldn't be a party without a fantastic photo booth. The props created by Mom It Forward would be an excellent addition to our festival next year when the printables become available online.

However, there are many other great sites for printable photo booth props. McKenzie Smith has 12 pages of colored pdfs to print, cut, and pose with at your festival.

Our family also used several of the unique props created by Oh, Happy Day.

To add to the prop collection pack up your dress up box into wooden apple crates to display by the photo booth.

For an autumn event a large piece of burlap or a giant roll of brown butcher paper make an easy backdrop for your photo booth.

{Learn from our rookie mistake and line up the seams or make sure the seams are not in the direct line of the centered close ups}

Tall, cut corn stalks or hay bales make an easy thematic border for the photobooth.

Create a banner for your photo subjects to model with to remember what the occasion was all about!
Outdoor Games
When planning the outdoor games for our family carnival I referred to my Summer To-Do Pinterest board. This board includes several large, yard game versions of classic indoor games.  The kids especially liked the Giant Jenga and the over-sized Right, Left, Center!

This beautiful LRC game pictured about, from DIY Show Off, would be a very durable option for use year after year. The kids and I created ours out of red plastic plates and large white foam cubes wrapped in clear packing tape.
Corn Hole Cup
To entertain the adults we set up a huge double elimination Corn Hole (aka Bean Bag Toss) Cup Competition.  The competition was fierce, and fun for the great grandparents to watch and cheer for from the sidelines.  There is already talk of who the teams will be next year and how we might up the ante with the prize.  For the inaugural year the big trophy was this "fancy" Corn Hole Cup which I am sure will become the centerpiece in someone's home for years to come ;)
Ring Toss

This homemade ring toss is made out of spray painted Jones soda bottles and bamboo rings wrapped in fabric strips.  You will probably have to do without the flowers when the game is in play.
The other activities we included in our first annual festival included a backyard baseball game, facepaint, bean bag toss for children, scoops, Frisbee golf course, and a pinata.  
There are several other game ideas posted to ABC&123's Pinterest board, Fall Festival Ideas we are hoping to incorporate next year.

For all of the games we used small prizes collected from "trinket catalogs" and the dollar stores.  The kids at our party were especially thrilled with tattoos, plastic wizard fingers (ACK!), and those little grow capsules that melt in water leaving a colorful sponge shaped like a character.

For this year's festival we kept the food simple with hamburgers and a topping bar, chips, homemade macaroni & cheese, fruits and veggies.  During game time we served snacks in colorful paper cones similar to these from Bridgey Widgey.

Our party featured Clementine Pumpkins from Muffin Tin Mom.

 We also served Veggie Skeletons.

When planning your own Fam Fest, remember it does not matter how simple or Pinterest-y you like to make things, what matters is the time together with the generations!


  1. What an ideas of indoor and outdoor games. I really love your all ideas which are great and kids like to play.

  2. Really an amazing ideas shared with us here. I think your ideas will be helpful to people who want to looking the best indoor and outdoor activity for their kids.