seasonal snacks

Harvesting Family Fun With Crafts, Games and Food

Whether you’re planning a bountiful harvest celebration or a Halloween party, you may want to consider these craft, games and seasonal snacks.


When doing crafts with kids in a group setting, plan a main craft with a short, second activity – coloring pages or stringing popcorn – for early finishers. Whatever crafts you choose, pick ones that are easy to clean up so you can move on to the next activity.

Paper Strip Pumpkin

  • Measure and cut an orange rectangle from construction paper to fit around a toilet paper tube.
  • Glue in place to create the pumpkin’s center base.
  • Measure and cut 11, 1- by 12-inch strips from orange paper.
  • Glue one strip to the upper, inside end of the toilet paper tube.
  • Let dry.
  • Repeat this step with remaining 10 strips.
  • Place the detached end of each strip down and glue to the bottom, inside end of the tube. (Strips should bow out to create a rounded pumpkin.)
  • Let dry.
  • Draw and cut out a large leaf shape from green construction paper.
  • Tape leaf to the top, inside section of the tube.

Beau the Scarecrow

  • Draw and cut an 8-inch triangle from a paper bag to create the scarecrow’s hat.
  • Fold one piece of yellow construction paper accordion style into 1/2-inch folds.
  • Open paper flat and cut along the folds to create strips for straw hair.
  • Place a paper plate bottom side up.
  • Glue hair randomly to one edge of the plate.
  • Glue hat over the hay hair, allowing some hay to show around the lower, outer edges of the hat.
  • Draw and cut a 1-inch triangle then glue to the center of the plate to create a nose.
  • Draw and cut two 1-inch circles from pink paper, then glue onto the face to create the cheeks.
  • Use black marker to create eyes, eyebrows and a mouth.
  • Draw and cut a 3-inch sunflower shape from yellow paper, then glue to one side of the hat.
  • Draw and cut a 1-inch brown circle and glue to the center of the sunflower.
  • Cut ribbon into an 18-inch strip.
  • Tie into a bow and attach with a glue gun to the lower edge of the paper plate for the bow tie.

Speckled Leaf Suncatcher

  • Measure and cut two 6-inch squares from black construction paper.
  • Temporarily paper clip the two squares together, then place paper on the table.
  • Center a large maple leaf over the top, black square and trace around it with a pencil.
  • Use scissors to cut out the leaf pattern you drew, making sure you cut through both sheets of construction paper to form a hollowed-out leaf frame.
  • Remove paper clips and set aside.
  • Place crayon shavings between two sheets of waxed paper and iron until the shavings melt.
  • Measure and cut the waxed paper design to a 5 ½-inch square.
  • Place the multicolored design between the two black squares to create a stained-glass leaf picture and frame.
  • Glue design in place.
  • Punch a hole at the top of the frame, loop yarn through the hole and tie in a knot.
  • Hang picture in a sunny window.


Games are a staple at kids’ gatherings. Choose ones every child can participate in, where no one is eliminated. With a little forethought and creativity, any game can be adapted to fit the fall theme.

Broom Ball

  • Purchase half-sized brooms for each party guest and two different colors of seasonal garland.
  • Decorate half of the brooms with one color of garland and the remaining half with the other garland to specify teams.
  • Establish goals at opposite ends of the yard, and divide the children into teams.
  • Place a kickball in the center of the yard, then give each child a broom to sweep the ball to their team’s goal.
  • The first team to score five goals wins.

Ring around the Pumpkin

  • Place three large pumpkins with stems in a line several feet apart.
  • Gather four hula hoops.
  • To play, children should take turns standing behind the designated tossing line and try to ring the pumpkins with the hula hoop. The child with the most rings wins.

Scarecrow Relay

  • Separate children into two teams.
  • Choose one child from each team to be the scarecrow.
  • Place scarecrows at one end of the room, along with hay and oversized scarecrow-type clothing items.
  • Teammates line up at the other end of the room.
  • To play, teammates take turns running to the scarecrow and dressing her with one clothing item, then tag the next player who does the same.
  • When the scarecrow is completely dressed, each teammate returns a second time to stuff straw in her clothing.
  • The first team to finish making their scarecrow wins.


Food is more fun when kids are involved in the preparation process. Stick with things children like to eat and add a seasonal twist to them.

Popcorn Pumpkins

  • Pop 2 quarts of popcorn. Set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup of sugar, 1/3 cup of light corn syrup, 1/3 cup of water, ¼ cup of butter and ½ teaspoon of salt.
  • Bring to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves.
  • Reduce heat and cook until the mixture reaches approximately 270 degrees.
  • Remove from heat and stir in 1 teaspoon of vanilla and orange food coloring.
  • Pour mixture over popcorn and stir until thoroughly coated.
  • Grease hands and form popcorn into pumpkin-shaped balls.
  • Break a few thin twisted pretzels to form an arch and push them into the top center for the stem.
  • Makes approximately 12 pumpkins.

Itsy-Bitsy Caramel Apples

  • Cut lollipop sticks in half.
  • Use a melon baller to scoop little balls out of medium-sized apples, making sure each ball has a section of the apple peel.
  • Push a lollipop stick into the peel of each apple ball.
  • Blot apples dry with a paper towel.
  • Melt a 14-ounce package of caramel candies with 2 tablespoons of water.
  • Have children dip and swirl their apple balls in caramel then roll in crushed Oreo cookies, nuts, sprinkles, nonpareils or mini-chocolate chips.
  • Place on waxed paper to cool for 15 minutes.

Pumpkin Pancakes

  • Mix dry ingredients: 1 cup flour, 1 tablespoon sugar, 2 teaspoons baking soda, ¼ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon cinnamon.
  • Set aside.
  • Separate two eggs.
  • Mix yolks with ½ cup of plain pumpkin puree, 1 cup milk and 2 tablespoons canola oil.
  • Add dry ingredients.
  • Beat egg whites until fluffy, then fold into the batter.
  • Pour ¼ cup of batter onto a greased griddle; flip when bubbles form on top.
  • Kids can make jack-o-lantern faces using raisins, dried fruit, nuts, chocolate chips and whipped cream.


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