Creative Ways To Celebrate a Festive Virtual Family Thanksgiving

Nov 20, 2020 08:02 AM EST | By Kristine M. (

For almost a year, the global pandemic due to the spread of COVID-19 has caused disruptions to many traditional routines, including the celebration of Thanksgiving.

Despite the challenges many of us have experienced during this pandemic, we have adapted and found workarounds in order to enjoy our day-to-day lives. According to the NY Times, the Thanksgiving celebration may look unconventional, but there are many ways we can digitally reimagine the whole occasion.

Here are a few fun ideas you can try to have a Thanksgiving celebration to remember.

Choose A Platform

Months of living amid the pandemic have taught us many things-one of which is how to do video conferencing. There are plenty of virtual conferencing platforms you can take advantage of, which includes Google Meets, Skype, FaceTime, Facebook Rooms, Google Duo, Microsoft Teams, and Zoom. All of which offers a way for families and friends to get together and hang out virtually. 

Ways To Celebrate A Festive Virtual Family Thanksgiving
(Photo : Unsplash / United Nations COVID-19 Response)

In addition, according to CNN, Zoom recently announced that they would be removing the 4-minute time limit for their sessions to give way for Thanksgiving. On the other hand, devices like the ViewClix, Amazon Echo Show, and GrandPad will require a bit of configuration but can also simplify video calls.

Read also: Zoom's 40-minute Time Limit Will Be Lifted On Thanksgiving Day

Prepare Your Thanksgiving Meal

This year, meal preparations for Thanksgiving gatherings are made stress-free because many food establishments and supermarkets are offering delivery services. Whole Foods, Hello Fresh, Blue Apron, and Williams-Sonoma are just some of them. On the other hand, you can make it more fun by crafting your favorite dishes while chatting with relatives by doing a kitchen group call.

Ways To Celebrate A Festive Virtual Family Thanksgiving
(Photo : Unsplash / Claudio Schwarz | @purzlbaum)

You can opt to scan and share your family's treasured recipes via text or email ahead of time. Another way is to present them on screen as everyone prepares his or her own version remotely. 

Enjoy Your Time With The Family

Although everything will be done virtually, seeing your loved ones during the Thanksgiving dinner is still something to be grateful for. Another way to enjoy this time is by going through old pictures together. A virtual conferencing platform with share screen capabilities will be a helpful way to achieve this.

Ways To Celebrate A Festive Virtual Family Thanksgiving
(Photo : Unsplash / Raj Rana)

Additionally, you can also come up with a virtual talent show that will definitely be a fun activity for both the young and the old. 

After Dinner Relaxation

For a more laid back part of the occasion, old-fashioned entertainment like card games would be a great option. You can find free online card games for multiple players via Trickster Cards. Additionally, host games like Word Races and UNO can be found in Houseparty. 

Another option is hosting a virtual movie night as part of relaxing after dinner. Consider a "watch party" app or browser extension to sync up the video conference. You can also add a chat function for everyone watching the movie together. Google Chrome carries the Teleparty that works smoothly with HBO Max, Disney+, and Hulu.

Ways To Celebrate A Festive Virtual Family Thanksgiving
(Photo : Unsplash / Thought Catalog)

On the other hand, there are other apps and websites with their own watch party services like AmazonPrime's Watch Party and Netflix's Teleparty. Furthermore, the Yahoo Sports app for Android and OS can stream the games on a phone or tablet for four people at a time.

Related article: Have a Stress-free Celebration Brought By These Best Thanksgiving Meal Deliveries

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