Try these alternatives to bobbing for apples

Bobbing for apples has always been a hilarious party activity, especially for kids. Whether you are participating in the game or acting as a spectator, you can always get a good giggle out of it. However, as time progresses, we have come to realize that perhaps having multiple kids stick their mouths on the same apples is not quite the best idea. 

Colds typically pass along children easily, so imagine what can happen when their mouths are repeatedly touching the same apples while also intaking and spitting out the water. The germs can spread like wildfire! On a more solemn note, you also run the risk of a child drowning when bobbing for apples. All it takes is two inches of water for a child to drown, and most obviously, we want to avoid this at all costs.

Fortunately, we have found games to keep the spirit of bobbing for apples alive, but without any of the risks. You can still incorporate quirky games at your child’s next birthday or backyard event, but this time no one has to be dunking their heads in a pail of water. These bobbing for apple game alternatives will have the little ones laughing with excitement. 

Keep it in the water 

Let’s start off pretty close to the original game. Find your large bucket of choice, filling it with apples and water. This time, we are bobbing for apples with tools! Use a shovel, a pair of skewers, a spatula, or anything else you can think of. If you want to make it more interesting, you can craft a game with multiple levels. Start with all the kids scooping apples with a shovel or pail, advance to skewers, and then to the spatula. Whoever can complete all the levels wins. Be careful though, expect a ton of splashing!

Bobbing for apples pail
Steve Cukrov/ Shutterstock

String it along

Let’s stick to bobbing for apples once more, but take it out of water. It’s time to get creative with this one! We’ll be bobbing for apples on a string. You will first need to figure out how to hang a string or pole horizontally. If you have a clothesline or limbo set up, then you are in luck. When configuring your game station, make sure you consider the heights of the children! From there, you’ll hang apples along the string (make sure they’re adequately spaced out). If you want to ditch the apples, go for it! Donuts and cookies can be a fun alternative if you are ready for the kids to partake in a sugar high. 

Station each kid underneath their own apple or donut, count them down, and the race begins! You can see who can eat the most of their treat in a set amount of time or who can pull it off the string first. If they are just pulling it off, you may want them to have to jump for it. Remember, they are still technically “bobbing,” so no hands!

Apple Olympics 

If you think your kids are coordinated enough, let’s take it a step further with some tossing games. Instead of cornhole, think apple hole if it is appropriate. You can set up stations with various-sized cups and pots and see which kitchenware pieces kids can get the apples to get into! If you’d like, you can turn this into a game with different difficulty levels or a game where the containers are worth various amounts of points.

Replace the typical egg toss with the apple toss. Ditch the spoons, and let’s see if the kids can toss it back and forth with ladles or even nets. We know—this one can be a bit frightening! Apple toss is definitely more ideal for your older kids.

Olga Enger/ Shutterstock

Choose one of these games or even all of them! Go full blast and direct an apple Olympics. It’s up to your discretion how points are delegated and how each game can be played. Alternatively, you can skip points and winners altogether. You’ll avoid any hurt feelings, and the most important thing is if the kids are having fun. And they sure will!

Whether these bobbing for apple alternatives match a day of autumn festivities or your child’s birthday theme, these games are a wonderful way to bring everyone at the party together. To sweeten the day, make sure there is some apple pie to end the day with!

Editors' Recommendations