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Carnival Party Games

photo courtesy of Matt Howden from freedigitalphotos.net

Carnival party games are becoming more and more popular for birthday parties, gatherings or festivals. For the carnival themed party you will need a variety of resources to suit the games and activities.

First you may want to set up a ticket booth and organize some groovy tickets suited to your theme. We have a free ticket template which you may wish to use for your carnival games.

Make sure you buy a lot of small toys, items,candy and stationery fit for children. You will need to have a stash each each game that you have set up. Also you need to have many little items to give away for children who do not win the game as well as the winners and to ensure there are as few tears as possible.

Jelly Bean Jar

Carnival Party Game number 1
As your children enter the park, house or party venue, do have a jar filled with jellybeans. They have to write down a guess as to how many jellybeans/candy/teddy-bears are in the jar. If you are using many jelly beans, give the children a reasonable ball park figure to guess within. For instance if you have 300 jellybeans, given them between 200 and 400. The child who gets the closet guess is the winner and gets to keep the jellybeans.

Darts and Balloons

Carnival Party Games number 2

As you can guess the object of the game is to throw a dart to hit the balloon. This game is suited to older children. Place a range of numbers on a large wall or board you do not mind having darts thrown at it. Cover each number with a different colored balloon with duck tape or you can even staple them on. Have the children lined up about two meters away from the balloons and they have three darts to shoot at a balloon. Ensure every child who participates gets to have a prize. This is fun for all the family and friends.

Tin Can Throw

Carnival Party Games number 3

Arrange Three large empty tins in a pyramid. Have a range of small bean bags for the children to throw at the tin can. Each children should have three attempts. Each time the knock down a can add them up as part of their score. Give each child three go's each. The winner is the child who knocks down the most cans. Great game.

Alternativley you could use plastic bottles arranged in a row or in a double row, one on top of two.

Photo Victor Habbick from freedigitalphotos.net

Sack Races

Carnival Party Games number 4

As it sounds, organise a few old potato sack or even rubbish bags. Each child are able to jump into a sack at the start of the race. One the count of 'go' the children will jump in their bags towards the finish line. The winner is the first past the finish line. You can give first, second and third places. If any child looks very sad give them a small prize.

Take a look at similar games you might like to try with your children and can adapt to the carnival style of party. Messay party games are very similar also take a look at the children's games which give you great ideas for your party.

Water Balloon Toss

Carnival Party Games number 5

Messy, watery and fun

Materials Needed

  • about 5 balloons per guest
  • water
  • area to throw the balloons
  • a bucket to put your balloons in
  • clothes that can get wet

How to Play the Game

Divide all players into groups of two and give each pair a balloon.

2. Players should line up in two lines, with partners facing each other. Every player should then take one big step backwards.

3. Each player holding a balloon gently tosses it to their partner. If the other player catches it successfully, the partners each take another step backwards. If the balloon breaks, it's game over!

4. If you're playing with a group of people, keep playing until only one pair is left. If you're

Apple bobbing

Carnival Party Games number 6

  • Large washtub
  • water
  • lots of apples
  • dry towels.

Fill a large washtub with water and put apples in it, until they are still a few inches below water. Keep a good supply of dry towels handy for your guests, to dry their heads after bobbing. People participating in the game have to take the apples out of the tub only with their mouths, without using hands.

Gigantic Carnival Decorating Set

When you are planning our carnival, make sure your decorations and displays match the theme such as the one below. This gives your carnival that authentic feel. Click on the Photo to order the one in the photo.

Egg and Spoon

Carnival Party Games number 7

Have children in teams. This front child should hold a spoon and an adult place a raw egg on their spoon. On the count of 'go' each front team members must run/walk with the spoons and eggs up to a cone, or an object go around it and walk back to their team. They have to place the egg on the spoon of the next child. That child should do the same. If an egg breaks on the way up to the cone, they have to run back to the front of their teams line and get a new egg. The first team to finish are the winners.

An alternative game could be where all children are in a line with an egg and spoon. They race about 20 meters and the first one there is the winner.

This Particular set has plastic spoons and egg shells with authentic looking eggs. This is an excellent fun idea without the mess. click on the photo to order yours cheaply.

Obstacle Course

Carnival Party Games number 8

Have a range of fun items place on the ground outside. Have old tyres, a large army net on the ground, the garden hose to walk on, small tables or benches, hoola hoops, small cones, scooters, bean bags, washing baskets, shoot a basket ball, etc.

Set up the obstacle course with rules at each turn. Take your children through each activity and what is expected. Tell the children that they are going to by timed and the winner is the person who does all the activities and is first back.


Place old tyres to jump in

hoola hoops-they can do 10 star jumps in each

Net-they can crawl under it

small tables-again they can crawl underneath

place hats, cones and bags-children have to zig zag around the items

basketball-shoot one shot in

Scooters-ride for a few meters around a cone

Garden hose-walk on the garden hose or soft pool line thingy.

And much, much me.

Hot Potato

Kids stand around and pass a potato or ball, but they must act like it is hot. They pass the item around with music playing in the background. If the music stops and someone is holding the potato, they must sit out of the game. Carry on until one person is left. They are the winner.

This little hot potato is very popular with children. If you get caught with the potato in your hands, you must pick up a chip. Three chips and your out. Click on the photo to order yours.

Pass the Pickle is Hilarious, it's musical.

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