It’s time to get in the holiday spirit with some creative Christmas contest ideas. Whether you’re running a business, hosting an event, or just want to spread some cheer among friends, family, and colleagues, these ideas are sure to make your Christmas season merry and bright.
If you are looking for some unique ideas for your Christmas contest in 2023, we have got you covered! Here are over 51 creative contest ideas that can be organized online or offline.
Christmas Contest Platforms
There are two platforms to run any contests. It can be either online or offline. Most of the offline Christmas contests can also be held online by converting them into virtual contests. For instance, you may share photos of your offline contests on social media accounts and ask for people to vote online. This will give you a larger reach and participation.
Online Christmas contest types
Here are different types of online contests that can be run on Christmas.
- Social media contest: Host a contest on your social media pages and ask people to submit their entries by commenting, liking, or sharing the post. This type of contest can also help increase engagement and reach for your page.
- Photo or video contest: Ask participants to share their most creative Christmas photos or videos for a chance to win a prize. This is a great way to showcase creativity and spread holiday cheer.
- Quiz or trivia contest: Test people’s knowledge about Christmas traditions, history, songs, and movies with a fun quiz or trivia contest. This type of contest can be easily organized through online platforms like Kahoot or Quizizz.
- Virtual talent show: With the rise of virtual events, why not host a virtual talent show? Participants can showcase their talents, such as singing, dancing, or playing an instrument, all with a Christmas theme.
- Giveaway contest: Everyone loves a good giveaway, especially during the holiday season. Partner with a brand or business to give away prizes in exchange for social media follows, likes, and shares.
Offline Christmas contest types
Offline contests can be organized at events, in stores, at home or even in the office. Here are some types to get you started:
- Recipe competition: Who doesn’t love delicious Christmas treats? Have a bake-off or cooking competition where participants can showcase their best holiday recipes.
- House decorating contest: Encourage people to decorate their homes with the most festive and creative decorations. You can have judges visit each house or have a voting system.
- Christmas scavenger hunt: Create a list of Christmas-related items for participants to find around their neighborhood or at an event. This is a fun and interactive way to get people involved in the holiday spirit.
- Office decorating contest: Bring some festive cheer to the workplace by organizing an office decorating contest. This can also help boost employee morale and create a fun and competitive atmosphere.
- Clothing contest: Whether it’s an ugly sweater contest or a best-dressed competition, encourage people to show off their holiday style. This can be organized at an event or even among friends and family.
51+ Creative Contest Ideas 2023
What are good Christmas contest ideas? As you know, there are two platforms to run this contest. Here are some of the Creative Christmas contest ideas for 2023 that can be organized online or offline:
15 Online Christmas Contest Ideas for 2023
Here are 15 Christmas contest ideas that you can host on any online platform:
#1. “12 Days of Giveaways”:
Kickstart the holiday season with a bang! Beginning December 1st, give away a different prize every day until the 12th. Make each day’s prize more spectacular than the last. This keeps your audience hooked, anxiously waiting for the next day’s surprise. Consider using a branded hashtag to make it easier for people to follow along.
Read also: 12 days of Christmas giveaway
#2. Ugly Sweater Contest:
Ah, the timeless tradition of ugly Christmas sweaters! You may run this contest both online and offline. In the case of an online contest, participants can upload their photo wearing their most hideous sweater. Create a voting system on your website or social media platform where people can vote for their favorite (or, rather, the ugliest). Winners could receive gift cards or even a brand new “beautiful” sweater.
#3. DIY ornament contest:
Invite your audience to get crafty and create their own Christmas ornaments using any materials they choose. Have them share photos of their creations on social media with a dedicated hashtag. The most creative or unique ornament could win a prize, like a DIY kit or crafting supplies.
#4. Christmas Karaoke:
A singing contest, but make it festive! Participants submit videos of themselves singing classic Christmas carols. Let your audience vote for their favorites or have a panel of judges make the call. The winner could receive musical merchandise or concert tickets.
#5. Virtual Gingerbread House Building:
For the tech-savvy and creative folks, offer a contest where participants can design a gingerbread house using digital tools. They can then share their virtual creations on social media with a dedicated hashtag. The winner could get a real gingerbread house kit or tech goodies.
#6. Santa Selfies:
Encourage people to take selfies dressed as Santa or using a Santa filter. These can be silly, creative, or downright hilarious. Collect the entries on your website or through social media, and let people vote for the best one. The winner could get a Christmas hamper full of goodies.
#7. Pet Costume Contest:
Oh, the cuteness overload! Participants dress up their pets in festive attire and share photos online. This could be a fun side contest to your ugly sweater contest or stand-alone. Prizes could include pet accessories or a donation to an animal charity in the winner’s name.
#8. Christmas Trivia Quiz:
Test your audience’s knowledge of all things Christmas. Create a quiz featuring questions about Christmas history, movies, songs, and more. Those who get all questions right could enter a draw to win a prize, like holiday decorations or gift cards.
#9. Guess the Ornaments:
Post a picture of a Christmas tree heavily adorned with ornaments. Ask your audience to guess the number of ornaments. The person with the closest guess could win a set of unique ornaments for their own tree.
#10. Festive Home Decor:
Ask people to share photos of their holiday decorations at home. This could include indoor and outdoor decorations. Create a gallery where people can vote for their favorite display. The winner could receive a voucher for home decor items.
#11. Write a Letter to Santa:
A nostalgic trip down memory lane. Invite people to write letters to Santa, which can be heartwarming, humorous, or whimsical. Share selected letters on your blog or social media, and let your audience vote for their favorite. The winner could receive a “Santa’s mystery bag” filled with gifts.
#12. Christmas Meme Creation:
Challenge your community to create the funniest or most touching Christmas meme. This could be a simple caption contest or involve creating a meme from scratch. The best meme could win viral fame and a prize of your choice.
#13. Digital Advent Calendar:
A digital twist on a classic holiday tradition. Create an online advent calendar where each day reveals a new prize or discount. Randomly select winners from those who engage with the calendar. The big prize on the final day should be something special to keep people involved throughout the event.
#14. Winter Wonderland Photo Contest:
Capture the magic of the season by encouraging participants to submit their best winter landscape photos. Think snow-capped mountains or twinkling cityscapes. Offer a prize that appeals to photography enthusiasts, like a new camera or lens.
#15. E-Gift Card Scavenger Hunt:
Hide digital gift cards or discount codes on different pages of your website. Drop hints on social media, leading people to the hidden treasures. This not only engages your audience but also drives traffic to different parts of your website.
39 Offline Christmas Contest Ideas for 2023
Here are 38 ideas for hosting Christmas contests in person:
#1. Cookie Decorating Contest:
Nothing says festive fun like cookie decorating. Competitors get sugar cookies at their table, and they have to decorate them as festively as they can within a certain timeframe. Creativity and precision are the keys to success here. It’s a great contest for both kids and adults and the best-decorated cookie wins.
#2. Christmas Bingo:
Spice up your usual game night with some holiday cheer by introducing Christmas Bingo. Replace the traditional numbers with Christmas terms. As the game progresses, players will be filled with anticipation, hoping their Christmas term comes up next, making it a fun and suspense-filled contest.
#3. Pin the Nose on Rudolph:
This activity is a festive twist on a childhood favorite. The players are blindfolded and have to pin the nose on Rudolph’s face, drawn or printed on a large banner. The closest one to the correct spot wins. It’s an exhilarating game packed with anticipation and cheer, perfect for kids and adults alike.
#4. Ornament Crafting:
Bring out the inner artist in you with an ornament crafting contest. Provide a range of crafting supplies and challenge participants to create the most unique Christmas ornament. The key is creativity and originality, and the resultant masterpiece is the contestant’s to keep or gift.
#5. Christmas Carol Pictionary:
Bring the spirit of Christmas songs to life in a fun, challenging way. Teams are pitted against each other, with players drawing a clue of a Christmas carol and their team trying to guess the song. The faster the guess, the higher the score, with the best guessers (drawers and guessers alike) winning.
#6. Stocking Stuffer Challenge:
A race against time with Christmas stockings in hand. Participants stuff stockings with a list of provided items as fast as they can. It’s a competitive game of speed and agility, and whoever fills their stocking first within the rules of the game is the winner.
#7. Tree Decorating Race:
There are different types of Christmas tree contest ideas. Simply split participants into teams and give them a small Christmas tree and an array of decorations. The race is on to decorate a tree that not just represents the spirit of Christmas but represents the team’s creativity. The fastest team with the most beautifully decorated tree wins this festive competition. You may also run a contest to make a DIY Christmas tree.
#8. Candy Cane Hunt:
Think Easter egg hunt but festive. Candy canes are hidden around the competition area, and participants have to find as many as they can within the given time. It brings out the child-like excitement in everyone involved, making it a fun, wholehearted contest.
#9. Gift Wrapping Relay:
It’s all about speed, teamwork, and precision. Teams have to wrap presents as quickly and neatly as they can. Each team member wraps a part of the package, handing it off to the next person once their part is done, relay-style. The first team to finish wrapping to a satisfactory level wins.
#10. Snowball Toss:
Make use of white bean bags or plush balls to act as “snowballs” and create a fun tossing game. Set up buckets or targets to aim at, and the player or team who lands the most “snowballs” within a specified time wins. Perfect for both indoor and outdoor venues.
#11. Christmas Movie Bingo:
A fun game for movie lovers! Create bingo cards with events, phrases, or characters from classic Christmas movies. As you watch, mark off each item on your card that happens on-screen. The one who completes a line first shouts “Bingo!” and is the winner.
#12. Sleigh Pull:
Create makeshift sleighs using wagons or anything with wheels. Participants can race in teams or individually, pulling their sleighs along a certain designated path. It’s a fun, energetic contest that will get everyone laughing.
#13. Santa’s Beard Contest:
Strange but fun. Participants have to create the best fake Santa beard using cotton balls, white tissue paper, or even shaving cream! The participant who makes the most convincing, jolliest beard wins.
#14. Christmas Scavenger Hunt:
Get people exploring a designated area (like a holiday market or even your own backyard) with a trail of clues to hidden Christmas items. It is an exciting quest that hones your problem-solving skills, and the first one to find all items and return wins.
#15. Hot Cocoa Taste Test:
Here’s a contest for the foodies. Get different kinds of cocoa – spicy, melted chocolate, marshmallow-based, etc. People have to vote on their favorite based on taste, aroma, and texture. The cocoa getting the highest votes wins.
#16. Snowman Building Competition:
If you’re in a region with snow, this one’s perfect. Teams or individuals compete to build the most creative and tallest snowman within a set timeframe. It’s a competition that brings warmth despite the chill of the snow.
#17. Reindeer Ring Toss:
Make it festive with antlers and rings. Participants throw rings at reindeer antlers, with more points for tougher throws. It is a simple yet fun contest that all age groups can enjoy.
#18. Ice Sculpture Contest:
For the artistic and those who aren’t afraid of the cold, an ice sculpting contest can bring out hidden skills. Contestants get a slab of ice to carve their Christmas sculptures, and the most creative, finely crafted one wins.
#19. Christmas Charades:
It’s a classic party game that’s perfect for Christmas. Only Christmas-themed books, movies, songs, or phrases are allowed. The fast guessers and the best mimers make this game a jolly good time.
#20. Secret Santa:
Looking for something classic? Participants randomly draw names and secretly exchange presents. The fun lies in guessing who your Secret Santa is. It’s a fun way to spread holiday cheer and surprise each other with thoughtful gifts. After all, the true spirit of Christmas is about giving and sharing happiness with others.
#21. Mistletoe Pucker Up:
Bring a fun and flirty competition into the mix with a Christmas-style kissing booth. Set up a booth adorned with mistletoe and have contestants compete for the best, most theatrical kiss on the cheek.
#22. Snowflake Making Contest:
Let creativity flow with paper and scissors. Have a contest on who can make the most intricate and beautiful snowflake. The resulting masterpieces can be used as decoration, and the winner gets the title of ‘Master Snowflake Maker.’
#23. Christmas Hat Parade:
Have a parade showcasing the most creative and festive Christmas hats. Both homemade and store-bought are welcome. The most unique hat takes away the prize.
#24. Guess the Christmas Carol:
Play snippets of Christmas songs and have contestants guess the title. It is a perfect contest for those with a keen ear for tunes and a love for Christmas carols.
#25. Yule Log Lift:
A fun twist on the traditional weightlifting competition: who can lift the yule log the longest? It’s a test of strength, endurance, and festive spirit.
#26. Christmas Memory Game:
A tray of Christmas items is displayed briefly. Then, contestants write down as many as they remember. It’s a battle of observation and memory; the one who can recollect the most items wins.
#27. Eggnog Chugging:
For the brave souls, it is a speed contest. Contestants are challenged to drink a cup of eggnog as fast as they can. It’s silly, messy, and a hilariously fun competition for onlookers and participants alike.
#28. Snow Globe Shake-Up:
A creative contest where participants have to make DIY snow globes. How to make it? Well, that’s up to the participants, and judges award points for creativity, materials used, and overall presentation. For instance, participants can use mason jars, glitter, and miniature figurines to create their own unique snow globes. The most inventive designs and best execution take away the award.
#29. Door Decorating Contest:
Take the holiday spirit to the streets with a door-decorating contest. Whether a home door decorating contest or an office door decorating competition, challenge people to get into the festive spirit. Participants can let their creativity shine as they deck out their doors with festive decorations. Judges can choose winners based on creativity, originality, and adherence to the theme.
Check out the video content below to know about the 95 door decorating contest ideas.
#30. Gingerbread House Competition:
Contestants are faced with the challenge of creating a gingerbread house using real gingerbread, icing, and candy. It is a fantastic contest for groups and a feast for the eyes of onlookers.
Read also: Gingerbread house ideas for contest
#31. Fruitcake Toss:
Give that notoriously dense cake a new purpose by seeing who can toss it farthest. It’s a test of strength and trajectory calculation, which brings fun and potentially hilarious results.
#32. Drawing Competition:
A creative competition where participants are given a Christmas-themed drawing prompt and a time limit to create their own interpretations. The most imaginative, well-executed drawing takes away the prize.
Read also: 21 best drawing contest ideas for students
#33. Mitten Madness:
A relay where contestants have to perform simple tasks like unwrapping a candy or sorting baubles while wearing thick mittens. It’s harder than it sounds and provides great entertainment.
#34. Jingle Bell Rock and Roll:
Why not stage a dance-off, with participants creating routines to popular Christmas songs? Show off your dance moves and festive spirit in this jolly contest.
#35. Blindfolded Tree Trimming:
It’s a hilarious contest where teams, being blindfolded, have to decorate a tree. Trust and communication are key in this challenge of decoration and teamwork.
#36. White Elephant Exchange:
Perfect for parties, where people trade and steal gifts in a fun way. The joy lies in the surprise element of gift-giving and stealing.
#37. Lighting Decoration Contest:
Encourage your community to light up their homes for the holiday season. Create categories such as “Best Holiday Spirit” or “Most Creative Use of Lights .”Invite local judges to choose the winners or let people vote for their favorites.
Read also: How to host a Christmas light contest?
#38. Ugly Sweater Party:
Host a party where guests have to wear the ugliest Christmas sweater they can find. Have a panel of judges decide on the ultimate winner and award prizes for categories like “Most Colorful,” “Most Creative,” and “Most Festive.”
#39. Cooking Contest:
Get people to share their favorite holiday recipes and compete in a live cooking contest. The audience can taste the dishes and vote for their favorite, or you can have a panel of judges decide the winner. Prizes could include cooking appliances or gift cards to grocery stores.
How to Run a Christmas Contest Successfully?
Running a successful Christmas contest takes careful planning and execution. Here are some tips to help make your contest a success:
- Clearly define the rules and guidelines of the contest
- Choose prizes that are appealing and relevant to the audience
- Promote the contest through various channels, such as social media, email newsletters, and flyers
- Create a sense of urgency by setting a deadline for entries or voting
- Engage with participants and encourage them to share their experiences on social media
- Choose judges who are fair, unbiased, and knowledgeable about the contest theme
- Announce the winners in a timely manner and follow through with awarding prizes
- Take photos or videos of the contest and share them on your organization’s platforms to showcase the event’s success.
Hosting a Christmas contest is a great way to bring joy and excitement to the holiday season. With these creative ideas and tips, you can plan and execute a memorable competition that will spread festive cheer and bring people together in celebration.
Now, you have more than 51 Christmas-themed contest ideas to choose from for your next holiday event. Whether you’re looking for a competitive edge or just want to spread some festive cheer, these activities will surely bring joy and fun to all involved.
Remember, the true spirit of Christmas is about coming together and celebrating with loved ones, so enjoy every moment of these contests with those around you.