Mardi Gras, which in French means “Fat Tuesday”, is also known as Shrove Tuesday, Pancake Day, and Dollar day.
In the United States, we think about Mardi Gras as just being a New Orleans tradition, but the holiday is celebrated in many other parts of America, and even around the world such as France and Italy. The fact is Mardi Gras is a well-loved holiday that has been around for hundreds of years.
Mardi Gras is one of the most exciting times of the year to have a drink, listen to great music, dress up in costume and let loose.
The best Mardi Gras celebrations around the world are also known for their great games, and your party shouldn’t be any different! To help keep your party flowing, we have all sorts of game ideas for you to play.
Here are 12 Mardi Gras Games to play with families, seniors, or youth groups. Pull any one of these out of your party hat and you’ll up the fun factor at your gathering!
Oh, one last thing! Most of these supplies you can find at your local Dollar Tree. That leaves your fun factor to being pretty inexpensive too!
Minute To Win It Mardi Gras Games
40 strings of beads (you can get these at Dollar Tree in packs of 8!)
Large bucket or container (Dollar Tree)
Give the first player all 40 beads. Set a timer for 1 minute. On your go, have the player take one necklace at a time and toss it, trying to get it to land inside of the bucket. They keep going until they run out of beads or when time runs out. After the time is up, count how many necklaces made it into the bucket, scoring one point for each. Give all the necklaces to the next player and set the timer again. Once everyone has played, the person with the most points overall wins!
Hang up a long boa and gently toss the necklaces trying to get them to hang across the string of feathers. We suggest using a thick, strong boa so that it will hold the beaded necklaces. Also, consider using just 20 necklaces instead of 40 so the weight doesn’t get too heavy. For every necklace that hangs on the boa, players score one point. The person with the most points wins.
30 Play Gold Coins (Dollar Tree)
Purple Shredded Basket Filler (Dollar Tree)
Plastic Spoon (Dollar Tree)
Long Rectangular Bucket
Fill a long bucket with purple shredded basket filler. Mix in the gold coins trying to disperse them throughout the basket fill. Set a timer for 1 minute. Using a plastic spoon, the first player will try to “dig” out the gold coins. They are trying to get the most gold coins they can within a minute. Once time is up, the player will count how many coins they dug out, record it and reset the timer for the next player. After everyone has had a chance to play, the person with the most gold coins recorded is the winner!
Other Mardi Gras Games
Mardi Gras Headband with a hat on top (Dollar Tree)
3 packages of Glow Sticks with connectors, 8 ct. each (Dollar Tree)
Open the packages of glow sticks and connect 2 sticks using 2 connectors and make them into a round circle. You should be able to make 12 rings. Next, put on the headband with the hat on top. All players will take turns gently tossing the rings trying to get them to go around the hat. Each player will count how many of the 12 they got around the hat and that is their score. The person with the highest score wins!
20 strands of beads
Open and spread out the tablecloth. Stand back at a predetermined distance, say 4 feet away from the table. The first player takes all 20 strands of beads one at a time and gently toss them over to the table. The goal is to get the necklaces to stay on the table and not slip off. To make things more of a challenge, use a sharpie to draw sections out on the tablecloth, making different point regions (like shuffleboard). You could make the first section 1 point, the middle section 2 points, and the third section 3 points. No points are scored for the necklaces that slide off onto the floor. The person to get the most overall points wins!
(Amazon affiliate link) Plastic Gold Coins
(Amazon affiliate link) Mini Cups
Tape the bottom of 4 mini cups to the floor so they don’t move as players are dropping coins into them. Give the first player 20 gold coins. Have them stand so they can drop the gold coins right from above the cups. Players must keep their hands above their head and drop the coin from above, trying to get them into any one of the 4 cups. After the player has dropped all 20 of their coins, one at a time, they then count up how many they got into each of the cups. The player that gets the most coins wins!
(Amazon Affiliate Link) Bag of feathers
Paper straws (Dollar Tree)
Spread out the feathers on a table. Give the first player a paper straw to blow out of. On your go, start the timer and that player will quickly blow through the straw trying to get all of the feathers on the floor. Once every feather has been blown off the table, stop the timer and record their time. After all players have had a turn, the person with the lowest time is the winner!
18 Small Paper Pom-Poms (come 6 in a pack at Dollar Tree and found in the party decorations area)
Large basket (Dollar Tree)
Read the instructions on how to make the pom-poms. Then place the basket back at a predetermined distance, like 6 feet. The first player will shoot the pom-poms toward the basket trying to score, one point for each that makes it in. The person with the most points after everyone has had a turn is the winner.
10 to 25 balloons, depending on how many guests you have (Dollar Tree)
Post It Notes (Dollar Tree)
You need one Post It note per balloon you plan on using. On each Post It note write the words “King or Queen” on 2 slips and the word “Jester” on the other remaining slips. For example, if you were using 10 balloons write “King or Queen” on 2 Post Its and the word “Jester” on the other 8.
Next fold each Post It note three (3) times in the same direction so that you make one long rectangular shape. Stick one rectangle slip inside each balloon being careful not to poke any holes in the latex. Then blow up each balloon tying them off.
To play the game, have everyone pick out a balloon that they think will have the words “King or Queen” on the slip of paper. Give players a safety pin to pop the balloon and find out what they picked. The two people who get “King or Queen” are the winners of this game!
Guess How Many
6 Beaded Necklaces with Coin Beads (sold at Dollar Tree in packs of 3)
Clear jar or container
The necklaces should each have 48 coin beads on them or a total of 288 for 6 necklaces (by the way 288 is the answer!). Layer the jar with the beaded necklaces making it look filled with coins. Print out this free Guess The Coins sheet (however many you need) and have your guests fill them out with their best guess as to how many coins are in the jar. The person who has the closest guess without going over is the winner!
Say No More
Beaded necklace for each player
Give all players a beaded necklace to wear. Come up with a forbidden word, such as “mask” or “feathers”. Then whenever someone says the forbidden word, whichever player catches them gets to steal their necklace! At the end of the party whoever has the most necklaces wins a prize!
Find The Baby
(Amazon affiliate link) Mini Plastic babies
Just like the King cake, this game involves finding the hidden baby, or shall I say babies! Hide however many mini plastic babies around your home and have players be on the hunt for the little cuties. At the end of the party, whoever has collected the most babies wins a prize!
Treasures to fill in your box such as coins, beads, candy
Scavenger Hunt Clues
Make up your scavenger hunt clues and then put them around the house. You can put the clues inside plastic eggs or put small trinkets or treats with each piece of paper. Then have all players work together to find the clues and follow the scavenger hunt trail. Once they get to the final clue and find the treasure box, have them split the goodies inside. Everyone wins in this game!
Other fun activities to have at your party:
Get plain, undecorated masks and allow guests to glue on beads, feathers, glitter, and stickers. You can even provide markers or paint for the really creative!
Dress Up In Costume and Have Your Own Parade
This is a really awesome craft to do with all of those beaded necklaces after you are done playing the games!
And at your party may you “Laissez les bons temps rouler” (Let the good times roll)!
Be sure to check out our Mardi Gras Printable Games here too!