Table Party Games

by Cristel Wood
Table party games allow people to get to know one another.

Table party games allow people to get to know one another.

Thomas Northcut/Digital Vision/Getty Images

Dinner parties bring people of different professions and lifestyles together. Oftentimes the people sitting around the table know each other only through loose contacts or not at all. Table party games, or games that can be played while sitting at the dinner table, allow dinner guests to "break the ice" and to get to know one another in a fun and relaxed environment. Encouraging guests to get to know one another during dinner will make after-dinner social activities more interactive and rewarding.

Guess Who?

Write the names of celebrities or historical figures that the party guests would know on sticky notes or pieces of paper with an adhesive strip on the back. Attach the sticky notes to the guests' foreheads without allowing the guests to see the names written on the notes. Ask guests to mingle, asking each other questions to determine the name written on their note. Alternatively, embrace a different theme, such as types of animals or locations, rather than using the names of celebrities or historical figures.

Surprise Phrase

Write unusual phrases on pieces of tape and attach them to the bottom of plates or cups used during your dinner. At a point during the dinner, or between courses, as your guests to lift their plate or cup and read the phrase. Challenge guests to use the phrase written on their plate or cup sometime over the course of the night. The trick is that they must use the phrase without anyone except the host realizing it. The phrases are up to the host but they should be slightly unusual. Reward those who manage to use their phrase, without anyone realizing that they are using it, a prize or token for their efforts.

What Did You See?

Begin the game by stating what you "saw" and what you didn't "see." One of the objects mentioned should be visible within the room; one object should not be visible within the room. The guests must look around the room to decide if you are telling the truth or not. If the object you "saw" is visible and the object you didn't "see" is not visible, then you are telling the truth; if the object you "saw" is not visible but the object you didn't "see" is visible, then you are lying. If other guests catch you in a lie, they win. Continue the game so that each person has a chance to play. Award candies or prizes to the winners.

Who Knew?

Hand each guest a strip of paper as they arrive and ask them to write down a fact about him or herself that is not commonly know. The strips of paper should contain no names and should be anonymous. Ask guests to deposit their strips of paper into a hat or basket near the dining area so that the origins of the strips are unknown. After dinner, or between courses, draw a strip from the hat and read it. Challenge dinner guests to guess which person the strip describes. If the guest is correct in their guess, they win a prize. If not, the game continues. Guests can choose whether to reveal themselves, if no one correctly guessed, or to remain a mystery.

Can You Pass The...

Label different dishes and utensils using an alternative language or a coded language. Challenge guests to asks for various dishes or utensils by the labeled names. Remove the labels halfway through the dinner so that guests have to asks for the dishes or utensils by memory alone. There is no point system for this game, nor winners or losers, but the game is bound to generate a few laughs.

About the Author

Cristel Wood is a writer specializing in food, photography, gardening and video games. She holds an Associate of Arts from South Puget Sound Community College and has worked for her local Parks & Recreation department, Mt. Baker ski area, Vista Village Retirement Community and has taught ESL in Peru.

Photo Credits

  • Thomas Northcut/Digital Vision/Getty Images