Every year, my family hosts a variety of Christmas parties. From Cookie Exchanges to Ugly Christmas Sweater Contests, my siblings and I enjoy getting together and sharing the festive spirit. As part of my Christmas party this year, I’ll be setting up a bunch of “Minute to Win It” games that my competitive siblings (along with their spouses) will love.
“Minute to Win It” challenges are fast-paced, often silly individual and team games where players have one minute to complete a task. Throw in a Christmas twist, and you have a set of games that will become an annual tradition at every holiday get-together. Have your guests try these 12 “Minute to Win It” games at your next party, and make it easier for guests to play by setting up stations for each one around your home. Make sure to check out our other Christmas Party Games before planning your next holiday party, too.
- Christmas Kiss: For this challenge, a team of two must balance a round ornament with their mouths (one person on either side “kissing” the ornament). They must walk six feet from a starting line, and hang the ornament on a string suspended between two points (within a doorframe for example). They have to repeat the process for a minute, and the team with the most ornaments on the string wins!
- Rudolph’s Red Nose Challenge: Each player is given a string with a small red pom-pom attached to the end. Players must dab their noses with Vaseline, and put the end of the string without the pom in their mouths. The goal of the game is to swing the pom-pom up so it sticks to the nose, but players can’t use their hands. This game is harder than it sounds, and makes for some silly pictures as players try to frantically swing their poms!
- Face Cookie: Place a decorated sugar cookie or gingerbread man on each player’s forehead. They must transfer the cookie from their foreheads to their mouths without dropping it or using their hands! Good luck with this tough game!
- Christmas Blows!: On one end of a table, place 10 propped up Christmas cards (with the openings facing down). The name of the game is to blow each card to the other end of the table, so it goes over the edge but ends up “hanging” from it. The player must be able to accomplish this task with at least one of the ten cards in under one minute. This game is near impossible, but your friends and family will enjoy the challenge!
- Ornament Balancing Act: Balance a yardstick on an object (a thick book for example). Have teams of two hang ornaments on either side of the yardstick over the course of a minute. The team with the most ornaments wins, but if the yardstick topples over, that team loses.
- Jingle Bell Box: Tie a tissue box around the waist of each player with the hole of the box facing outwards behind them. Fill each box with the same number of jingle bells, and Ready, Set, Go! Players must shake, rattle, and roll the jingle bells out of their boxes (while remaining upright). At the end of a minute, the player with the fewest bells in his or her box wins. This game is fun, noisy, and makes for some pretty silly dances! Enjoy!
- Marshmallow Stack: See how many marshmallows players can stack in a minute. An easy game but very competitive!
- Speed Tree: Contestants have one minute to stack red solo cups in the shape of a tree using only one hand. (The other hand must remain behind their backs at all times!) Try creating varying levels of difficulty for this game: easy = 21 cups, medium = 28 cups, hard = 36 cups, intense = 45 cups.
- Marshmallow Toss: Players must toss as many marshmallows as they can through a wreath and into a bucket on the other side. They have only one minute, and the person with the most marshmallows in the bucket wins. Make this game harder by setting the throwing line farther and farther from the wreath.
- Writing Christmas: Fill a large container with an assortment of Christmas items (ornaments, garland, ribbon, wrapping paper, bells, lights, wreaths, candy canes, etc.). In one minute, a player must use the items to write the word “Christmas”. Have spectators judge the event, awarding prizes to the “Most Artistic” and “Most Inventive” designs. At least one player will most likely misspell the word, so make sure to have a “special” prize for him or her.
- Jingle Bell Shake: Put varying increments of five jingle bells, ranging from 5-35 bells, in seven numbered, wrapped boxes (may be similar or different sized). Guests have a minute to shake boxes and write down guesses for the amount of bells in each one. The player with the most correct guesses wins!
- Ornament Race: Wrap a large clothing box, and tape a square of 1’x1’ wrapping paper on the floor. Mark a “starting point” with masking tape 3-4 feet away. Players must put a round ornament on the starting point and use the box to “fan” the ornament onto the wrapping paper square. This game is harder than it sounds, and expect your box to be destroyed by the end of the night from the frantic flapping!
TIP: Make sure to award prizes to each game winner, like personalized Christmas lollipops, personalized Christmas mint and candy tins, or personalized Christmas candy bars and wrappers. These prizes work double duty as party favors, too!