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Holiday & Seasonal

Friendsgiving Ideas & What to Expect

In order to have a successful Friendsgiving you need two things: good food & people. Learn about Friendsgiving & how to host a successful holiday feast.

By Enrique Aguilar

It's that time of year again when we gather with our loved ones for a heartfelt celebration. Thanksgiving, the quintessential American holiday, is a beautiful fusion of culinary delights and cherished moments with loved ones. While it has traditionally revolved around family gatherings, recent years have witnessed the emergence of Friendsgiving.

Friendsgiving Basics: What is Friendsgiving?

Friendsgiving is a modern twist on the traditional Thanksgiving celebration, where your best friends (rather than family) come together to give thanks and share a delicious meal. For Friendsgiving, everyone comes together to create a heartwarming celebration that's all about:

  • Fun vibes
  • Good food
  • Great company

Some choose to host it a week before Thanksgiving, others opt for the week after, and there are those who weave it seamlessly into Thanksgiving Day itself. It's a wonderful opportunity to get together with all your close and long-time friends.

Reasons To Celebrate Friendsgiving:

  • It's a perfect opportunity to showcase your cooking skills and creativity
  • You get to choose your guest list
  • You get to avoid any potential family drama (Whew!)
  • You’ll get to have fun decorating for the holiday
  • It's an expression of gratitude for the wonderful friendships in your life

Whether you've celebrated before or are becoming a first-time host, we're here to guide you on crafting the perfect Friendsgiving celebration with these 4 simple steps.

How To Host a Fun Friendsgiving

thanksgiving plate with assorted food and fork

1. Set the Date and Decide on Guest List

With the holidays being a busy time for everyone, you’ll want to make sure you plan ahead and have a specific date in mind. Friendsgiving typically takes place a week or two before or after Thanksgiving, but you have the flexibility to choose the timing that suits your group best. To kick off the fun, create your own event using Celebration Wishes’ planning platform. You’ll be able to include RSVP requests to help you:

  • Plan for the right number of guests
  • Gather any funds
  • Send out reminders about your event

2. Choose Where You'll Be Hosting

As a Friendsgiving host, one of the pivotal decisions you'll need to make is the location of your gathering. Your home offers an intimate and cozy atmosphere where your friends can relax and feel right at home. While many opt to host Friendsgiving at their homes, sometimes taking the party elsewhere can add an extra layer of excitement and sophistication to the celebration.
If you decide to host Friendsgiving at an off-site venue, and want to go above and beyond, consider using resources like Venue Report. They offer a curated selection of unique and picturesque venues, making it easier to find the perfect space for your celebration and aligns with your Friendsgiving vision.

Pro Tip: Remember to consider your budget, the number of guests, and the ambiance you want to create when choosing the where to host.

3. Craft Up Friendsgiving Menu Ideas

It’s time to showcase your culinary skills! Friendsgiving often mirrors the same food of Thanksgiving with a few twists here and there. When you opt to host this exciting gathering, it opens the door to be creative and create your twist on tradition. Here are 6 dish ideas you can try that not only celebrate the classic dishes of Thanksgiving but also add a bit of modern flair.

  • Maple Glazed Brussels Sprouts
  • Crispy Hasselback Potatoes
  • Bacon Mac & Cheese
  • Honey Glazed Carrots
  • Pumpkin-Shaped Baked Brie with Jam
  • Sweet Potato Pie

Pro Tip: Send out your meal ideas and invite your friends to try them out. As Friendsgiving is typically potluck-style, you'll have a delectable spread with each dish showcasing your friends' unique talents. This can also apply to drinks, so feel free to suggest BYOB to your guests.

4. Create a Cozy Atmosphere with Decor

table centerpiece with mini pumpkins and candles

Set the stage for your Friendsgiving feast with Fall festive decor. Get creative with your pals and craft unique centerpieces using:

  • Seasonal gourds
  • Candles
  • Fall foliage

Opt for earthy, rustic tableware and napkins to create that warm and inviting atmosphere. Add to the cozy atmosphere by using candles to add some soft lighting. You can also consider string lights or lanterns as additional sources of gentle lighting.

5. Keep the Fun Flowing with Activities

Friendsgiving isn't just about food; it's also about making memories together. Consider adding some well-chosen games and activities to enjoy during your celebration. If your gathering includes friends who may not know each other well, games and activities serve as excellent icebreakers. They help break down barriers and encourage everyone to mingle and bond.

Gather a collection of classic board games like Monopoly, Catan, or Connect Four
You can also plan a game of charades, which is a fantastic way to get everyone laughing and participating. These timeless favorites offer a fantastic opportunity for friendly competition and lighthearted fun. You can provide the games or encourage guests to bring their favorites.

Whether you prefer casual fun or structured entertainment, providing these options ensures your guests have a fantastic time and leaves everyone with cherished memories of your Friendsgiving gathering.

There you have it, — your ultimate guide to hosting a fun Friendsgiving that's sure to be a hit with your chosen family. So, gather your friends, get cooking, and create memories that will keep you smiling until next year's feast!

 person setting thanksgiving table with food

Start Planning Your Celebration

Ready to start planning for your upcoming celebration, whether it's Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving, or any special event? Look no further than Celebration Wishes, your one-stop destination for event planning and organization. Our platform provides you with the tools and resources to effortlessly plan, manage, and coordinate your gatherings, making every celebration a memorable and stress-free experience. Start planning, celebrate, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

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