How to Plan a Zoom Thanksgiving


If someone told me a year ago we would be planning to host Thanksgiving on Zoom, I would have laughed (or cried)!

Our extended family has decided to do our Thanksgiving on Zoom this year due to the COVID pandemic. Here are some ideas we are including to make this a Thanksgiving we’ll never forget! 

Tips for a Zoom Thanksgiving

The Food

When our family thinks of Thanksgiving, we think of time with family and of course, the food! We have some fantastic cooks in the family and I look forward to their traditional dishes each year. This year each family will make their individual specialties but in separate containers to drop off at each home ahead of Thanksgiving.

I’m still planning on setting a “fancy” table for the four of us in our house. Target sells some fun coloring tablecloths that we are using. We will also use our fancy glasses and good silverware. I’m even planning on setting a place for the laptop so we can have everyone at our table! 

Pro tip: You can send your own bakeware to the cooks ahead of time. They can fill it with sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, turkey, etc. and then return it to you. Less waste and you’re set with your own leftover containers too! 

The Fun

After we eat, we’ve got some fun things planned on Zoom! Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Play a game like BINGO (print out cards ahead of time) or visit Etsy for some great Thanksgiving Game ideas! We also like Jackbox Games–just be sure to watch for the Family-Friendly option. It’s VERY important! 
  • Have a Coloring Contest. We love the “Disguise Tom Turkey” ideas! 
  • Watch home videos or look at photos together. We have some vacation videos on digital that we are planning to watch. If you have Google Photos or another account where you can see photos, you can put together a little slide show. 
  • Not sure how to share your screen with everyone in Zoom? Here’s how

The Family “Together”

We’ve picked a time to all be “together” with our computers on. We’ve used Zoom during the colder months with our family so we’re all familiar with it. It took us a few tries to get everyone feeling comfortable with meeting online. I set up a Zoom meeting and share the login info with each household.

During our Thanksgiving time, I’ll log into Zoom and start by sharing what we’re thankful for this year. I think now more than ever, sharing the joys and blessings in our lives is crucial. Then we’ll eat and have some Thanksgiving fun “together”! 

This is obviously a less-than-ideal situation. If I’m honest, I’ve had some tears over this “ZOOM Thanksgiving” option. But if it means our family members, especially the senior family members, feel safe and comfortable, we will make it work! 

Please share other ideas in the comments. I’d love to hear about your plans too! 

zoom thanksgiving


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