20 Fun Thanksgiving contest ideas for work to celebrate the office spirit with your coworkers and employees

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By Stephen

Unlock the full potential of your workplace this Thanksgiving season with our comprehensive guide on “Thanksgiving Contest Ideas for Workplace.”

Discover innovative ways to foster team spirit and boost employee engagement, creating a positive and vibrant office environment with Thanksgiving office contest ideas.

According to a recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, employee engagement increases by 23% when organizations incorporate creative and inclusive activities.

In this article, we’ll delve into proven Thanksgiving contest ideas for work that not only celebrate the spirit of Thanksgiving but also enhance collaboration and morale among employees.

Here’s a sneak peek at what you can expect from the Thanksgiving contest for work:

– Transforming your office into a festive hub of gratitude

– Engaging in team-building activities that promote camaraderie

– Boosting employee morale and satisfaction through fun competitions

– Strengthening workplace relationships with inclusive and diverse contests

Explore these Office Thanksgiving contest ideas to create a workplace for coworkers and employees that not only acknowledges the holiday spirit but also builds a stronger, more connected team.


20 Thanksgiving contest ideas for work

The following is a list of best Thanksgiving contest ideas for work to celebrate with your employees or coworkers and build a healthy workplace:

1. Thanksgiving Talent Show

Thanksgiving is a time to come together and celebrate, and a talent show is a great way to do just that. It’s also a fun way for employees to get to know each other better and show off their hidden skills.

Encourage employees to sign up for the talent show in advance, and give them plenty of time to prepare their acts. On the day of the show, provide a stage and sound system, and let the employees entertain you! You can have a panel of judges vote on the winners, or have the audience participate in a vote to decide who gets the prize.

  • Examples and ideas: Employees can sing, dance, tell jokes, perform magic tricks, or do anything else they’re talented at. You can also have themed categories, such as “Best Thanksgiving-Themed Talent” or “Most Unique Talent.”

2. Thanksgiving Office Olympics

The Thanksgiving Office Olympics are a fun and competitive way for employees to get some exercise and have a good time. It’s also a great way to build teamwork and camaraderie.

Set up a variety of Thanksgiving-themed games, such as turkey bowling, pumpkin toss, and mashed potato relay race. Divide employees into teams and have them compete against each other. At the end of the day, announce the winning team and give them a prize.

Examples and ideas: Here are a few more Thanksgiving-themed game ideas:

  • Cranberry Spoon Race: Each player carries a spoon with a cranberry on it. The first player to cross the finish line without dropping their cranberry wins.
  • Pie Eating Contest: Have each player race to eat a slice of pie without using their hands. The first player to finish wins.
  • Cornhole: Set up two cornhole boards and have teams compete to see who can get the most cornhole bags into the hole.

3. Thanksgiving Trivia Challenge

A Thanksgiving trivia challenge is a fun and educational way to test employees’ knowledge of the holiday. It’s also a great way to promote team bonding and collaboration.

Come up with a list of Thanksgiving trivia questions, or find one online. Divide employees into teams and have them compete against each other to answer the questions correctly. The team with the most correct answers wins.

Examples and ideas: Here are a few sample Thanksgiving trivia questions:

  • What is the most popular Thanksgiving food in the United States? (Turkey)
  • When was the first Thanksgiving celebrated? (1621)
  • What is the name of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade mascot? (Snoopy)

4. Name that casserole tasting contest

A name that casserole tasting contest is a fun and delicious way to celebrate Thanksgiving. It’s also a great way for employees to get to know each other better and share their favorite Thanksgiving recipes.

Ask employees to bring in a casserole to share on the day of the contest. Label each casserole with a number, but don’t tell anyone what’s inside.

Have employees taste each casserole and write down their guesses on a ballot. At the end of the day, announce the correct names of the casseroles and give the winners a prize.

Examples and ideas: Here are a few examples of Thanksgiving casseroles that employees could bring to the contest:

  • Green bean casserole
  • Mac and cheese
  • Sweet potato casserole
  • Cornbread casserole
  • Stuffing casserole

5. Thanksgiving Speech

In this contest, employees will have the opportunity to deliver a short speech expressing their gratitude and appreciation for their colleagues and the organization.

Each participant will have a designated time limit to share their heartfelt thoughts and thank their coworkers for their support and contributions.

The speeches can be humorous, emotional, or inspiring, creating a positive and uplifting atmosphere.

The winner can be determined by a panel of judges or through a voting system where employees can cast their votes for the most impactful speech.

For the Thanksgiving Speech contest, participants can share personal stories of how their colleagues have made a positive impact on their work and personal lives.

Recommended Read: 10 Best Thanksgiving Contest Ideas For Businesses To Engage With Targeted Customers And Boost Your Sales

6. Thanksgiving Charades Contest

Organize a fun and interactive charades contest for employees to enjoy during the Thanksgiving season.

Divide participants into teams and provide them with a list of Thanksgiving-themed words or phrases to act out without speaking.

Each team takes turns guessing the charades within a specified time limit. To add excitement, consider awarding points for correct guesses and keeping a scoreboard.

This activity promotes teamwork, creativity, and laughter, fostering a sense of camaraderie among colleagues.

7. Who Knows the Boss Best Or Coworkers Best? trivia contest

Engage employees in a friendly competition to test their knowledge about the boss or their coworkers. Prepare a set of trivia questions related to personal interests, hobbies, or work-related achievements of the boss or colleagues.

Participants can answer the questions individually or in teams, and the person or team with the highest score wins.

This contest not only encourages employees to learn more about each other but also creates a fun and engaging atmosphere in the workplace.

8. Thanksgiving Costume Contest

Encourage employees to embrace the Thanksgiving spirit by organizing a costume contest. 

Participants can dress up as their favorite Thanksgiving characters, such as pilgrims, Native Americans, or turkeys. Set specific criteria for judging, such as creativity, originality, and adherence to the Thanksgiving theme.

Consider offering prizes for the best costumes, such as gift cards or small tokens of appreciation. This contest promotes creativity, boosts morale, and adds a festive touch to the workplace.

9. Thanksgiving Storytelling Contest

Create a platform for employees to share their Thanksgiving stories and experiences. Invite participants to write or orally present their personal anecdotes, memories, or traditions related to Thanksgiving.

Encourage them to include details that evoke emotions and engage the audience. Consider having a panel of judges or allowing colleagues to vote for their favorite stories.

This contest not only fosters a sense of community and cultural exchange but also provides an opportunity for employees to showcase their storytelling skills.

10. Thanksgiving Pictionary Palooza

Organize a lively game of Pictionary with a Thanksgiving twist. Divide participants into teams and provide them with a list of Thanksgiving-themed words or phrases to draw.

Each team takes turns selecting a word or phrase and drawing it on a whiteboard or paper while their teammates try to guess within a time limit.

Award points for correct guesses, and keep a scoreboard to track each team’s progress. This game promotes creativity, communication, and teamwork, making it an enjoyable activity for the workplace.

Creative Thanksgiving office contest ideas

These are some of the very creative and engaging Thanksgiving office contest ideas that are the perfect way to celebrate your holiday season at the workplace with your coworkers or employees:

11. Thanksgiving Meme Contest

In this fun workplace contest, employees create and share Thanksgiving-themed memes. 

Participants can use popular meme templates or create their own, adding humorous captions or images related to Thanksgiving.

The contest encourages creativity and humor, fostering a lighthearted atmosphere in the office. 

Employees can submit their memes through a designated platform or display them on a bulletin board. The winner can be determined through a voting system or by a panel of judges.

Examples of meme ideas include “When you realize you ate too much turkey” or “Thanksgiving dinner expectations vs. reality.”

12. Cooking Contest

The cooking contest brings out the culinary skills of employees as they prepare and share their favorite Thanksgiving dishes.

Participants can sign up to showcase their cooking talents by bringing in a homemade Thanksgiving dish to share with colleagues.

The dishes can range from traditional Thanksgiving recipes to unique creations. A panel of judges or a popular vote can determine the winner based on taste, presentation, and creativity. 

This contest not only encourages friendly competition but also allows employees to bond over food and share their cultural traditions.

Examples of dishes include roasted turkey, pumpkin pie, or a creative twist on a classic side dish.

13. Scavenger Hunt for Thanksgiving Items Around the Office

This interactive contest involves hiding Thanksgiving-themed items throughout the office, and employees must find them within a specified time frame.

Clues can be provided to guide participants to the hidden items, creating an engaging and challenging experience. The items can be related to Thanksgiving symbols, such as mini pumpkins, turkey feathers, or cornucopias.

The first employee or team to find all the items wins the contest. This activity promotes teamwork, problem-solving, and exploration within the workplace.

Examples of clues include “Look for something orange and round in the break room” or “Find something that represents abundance and harvest.”

14. Thanksgiving Poems or Songwriting Serenade

In this creative contest, employees can showcase their writing and musical talents by composing Thanksgiving-themed poems or songs.

Participants can express their gratitude, share stories, or capture the essence of Thanksgiving through their compositions.

The poems or songs can be performed individually or in groups during a designated event or gathering. The winner can be determined through audience applause or a panel of judges.

This contest encourages self-expression, creativity, and appreciation for the holiday.

Examples of poem or song ideas include “A Thanksgiving Haiku” or “The Thanksgiving Song: A Melody of Gratitude.”

15. Thanksgiving Social Media Post Challenge

This contest encourages employees to share their Thanksgiving experiences and traditions on social media platforms.

Participants can post photos, videos, or stories related to Thanksgiving, showcasing their celebrations, gratitude, or acts of kindness.

The contest can have specific hashtags or themes to categorize the posts and make them easily searchable. The winner can be determined based on factors such as creativity, engagement, or the number of likes and shares.

This contest promotes employee engagement, community building, and the celebration of diverse Thanksgiving traditions.

Examples of post ideas include sharing a photo of a homemade Thanksgiving centerpiece, Costumes, volunteering, or a video of a gratitude message.

16. Thanksgiving Office Decoration Competition

In this contest, teams or individuals compete to create the most festive and creative Thanksgiving-themed office decorations.

Participants can use various materials like paper, balloons, and props to transform their workspace into a Thanksgiving wonderland.

The decorations should reflect the spirit of Thanksgiving and incorporate traditional elements like turkeys, pumpkins, and autumn colors. Judges can be appointed to evaluate the decorations based on creativity, originality, and adherence to the Thanksgiving theme.

The winning team or individual can be rewarded with prizes like gift cards or a trophy.

17. Thanksgiving Spirit Award

The Thanksgiving Spirit Award recognizes individuals who embody the true spirit of Thanksgiving in the workplace.

This award can be given to employees who consistently demonstrate gratitude, kindness, and generosity towards their colleagues.

Nominations can be collected from coworkers, and a committee can review the nominations to select the winner.

The award can be presented during a Thanksgiving-themed event or a team meeting, and the recipient can be acknowledged for their positive attitude, teamwork, and willingness to help others.

The award can be accompanied by a certificate, a small gift, or a personalized note of appreciation.

18. Pie Eating Contest

The Pie Eating Contest is a fun and delicious activity that adds excitement to Thanksgiving celebrations in the workplace.

Participants compete to see who can eat a pie the fastest without using their hands. The pies can be traditional Thanksgiving flavors like pumpkin, apple, or pecan.

The contest can be organized in rounds, with winners from each round advancing to the final round. A timer can be used to track the eating time, and the participant who finishes their pie first is declared the winner.

Prizes can be awarded to the winners, such as a pie-themed gift basket or a gift card to a local bakery.

19. Thanksgiving Karaoke

Thanksgiving Karaoke is a lively and entertaining activity that brings coworkers together to celebrate the holiday.

Participants can choose from a selection of Thanksgiving-themed songs or popular tunes and take turns singing on a karaoke machine or using a karaoke app.

The songs can include Thanksgiving classics like “Turkey in the Straw” or modern hits that capture the festive spirit.

To make it more engaging, participants can form teams and compete for the best performance. Judges or audience applause can determine the winners, who can receive prizes like a karaoke microphone or a music streaming subscription.

20. Friendsgiving Lunch Potluck Teams

The Friendsgiving Lunch Potluck Teams activity encourages coworkers to come together and share a delicious Thanksgiving meal.

Employees can form teams and each team can be responsible for bringing a specific dish or component of the meal, such as turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, or desserts.

This potluck-style lunch allows everyone to contribute and enjoy a variety of dishes. To add a competitive element, teams can be judged on presentation, taste, and creativity.

Prizes can be awarded to the winning team, such as a cooking-related gift basket or a cookbook with Thanksgiving recipes. It’s a great way to foster teamwork and create a sense of community in the workplace.



In conclusion, embracing Thanksgiving contest ideas for the office is a strategic approach to elevate team dynamics and foster a culture of gratitude.

The data-backed insights and creative activities explored in this guide promise a more engaged, motivated, and cohesive workplace. Elevate your office environment and reap the benefits of a thankful team.


  • Stephen

    Stephen is a passionate professional with expertise in communication skills. He is dedicated to helping businesses excel through effective workplace communication. Join him for insights on professional development, productivity, and business success. Do follow him on Twitter.

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