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General conference is a wonderful time of year for Latter-day Saints around the world. Over the years, many families have developed unforgettable general conference traditions that they look forward to. Here are 19+ ideas you might want to try!
I sometimes joke that general conference is like a festival in Latter-day Saint culture … and that’s just a joke of sorts 🙂
The truth is, I look forward to general conference for the spiritual messages and the livelihoods we receive from them. But I also look forward to the time we spend together as a family and some of the memorable traditions we have for enjoying that time together.
Our kids are all quite young so getting them to listen to all four sessions can be a challenge at times – and I’d be lying if I said they did! With that said, let’s try to get them to listen to the little things that they can. We’re making some of these activities a little easier.
My hope in sharing these traditions is not that you will feel like you need to make general conference a great production or something very special. The ghost does this for you! No one should feel extra pressure to make it a special weekend. I hope if you are looking for a tradition that will make your family something different, a few ideas can help you break away from it.
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Listen to the pun
This is always very popular with the children during general conference. I am always amazed at how well the children listen when there is a little motivation for sweets or treats!
We’ve done this differently over the years depending on the ages of the kids, how many were there, etc.
For a year we handed out bowls of sweets / treats with different words on them. Whenever a child heard the word, they could go up and get a treat from the bowl.
For another year we printed out a number of different words that were sure to crop up during the conference, and each child could choose four to listen to. We found this worked a little better so that people didn’t run to the bowls all at once.
If you choose the first option, I recommend having the child write down each time they hear one of the words – and at the end of the conversation, they can collect their goodies to put in a small bag or bowl . This prevents the aforementioned problem of everyone running to the bowls and being distracted from the conversation!
Put a puzzle together
This is one that Forrest always loves to do – it’s one of the ways he stays awake! We usually choose a puzzle that can be put together during all general conference sessions. We’ve already ordered church-themed topics from Amazon, but sometimes we just pick one from our collection or my parents’ collection.
We love everything from Dowdle. We love this one! You can often find them at Costco for less than $ 10. They also have some great church topics:
Some other similar options would be painting by number or diamond art. I really enjoy doing this.
Build a tent / fort
Which kid (and maybe even an adult!) Doesn’t build a tent or a fortress? I know that when we have a fortress or a tent, my children’s enthusiasm for everything we do increases tenfold.
Put together a camping tent, build a fortress with blankets etc, and enjoy listening to the conference inside the fortress (a large bowl of popcorn is fun to add to the mix too!).
General Conference Bingo
This was a great achievement during the last general conference. The kids paid so much attention and were so proud of themselves to get a BINGO. There are many general conference bingo templates – here are a few:
I just came up with the name for it, but I love the idea of having a 10-15 minute post-general conference meeting where everyone can only share a thought or two about what really caught their eye. I think it’s a great way to highlight certain principles that have been talked about, tell different stories, and just see what others felt were important messages during the meeting.
Choose a family goal for the next six months
Much of the discussion during general conference is often about one topic. Perhaps you can work together to discuss what one of these could be and establish a family goal to focus on over the next six months.
For example, if it looked like a lot of people were talking about personal readiness, you could make a goal of getting everyone a 72 hour kit. Or, when the prayer has been stressed, you might want to make a goal to be in tune with family prayer.
I think it would also be fun to quote from one of the sessions as a family motto.
Draw pictures of the speakers
I always enjoyed doing this in my youth, and it made it much easier for me to stay awake during general conference. I always drew a picture of each speaker and I found that it usually took up most of the time.
Have all the pictures drawn and compare at the end. For older children and adults, you can encourage them to find a phrase they loved from the speaker and write it next to the picture.
There are tons of printable games and activities designed for general conference – print a few! My mom usually puts together a few activities for the kids to choose from.
Meme Worth Quotes
Everyone loves a good meme, right? Have everyone write down the quotes they think will be the great “meme” quotes for this general conference, and then vote on them at the end!
Lego temple building
We have a lot of LEGO fans in our household so I think this would be a huge hit. Pull out all of the LEGO blocks and encourage everyone to build their own LEGO temple.
Temple guessing game
I don’t know about you, but I always think it’s fun to guess where new temples might be announced.
Work together as a family on a service project – tie a fleece blanket, put together hygiene kits, or find a project on Just Serve that you can do as a family while general conference is taking place.
New tie or new dress
General conference often happens around Easter (in fact, it’s the same day this year!) – you can combine your child’s new Easter outfit – if you get one – with general conference. Get your child or yourself a new tie or dress to wear on Sunday!
Jumping Jacks during the rest of the anthem
Okay, that might not seem like a great deal of awe, but I think everyone gets a little nervous sitting around for that long. If there’s an anthem of rest, have everyone stand up and do a few jumping jacks to get their blood pumping and waking them up a little!
General Conference on Food Traditions
Many people have general conference traditions dealing with food – while I certainly could never name them all, here are a few different ideas.
Is there anything that yells, “It’s general conference time!” than cinnamon buns? Whenever I happen to be on social media, I feel like my feed is suddenly inundated with pictures of cinnamon buns during general conference – and I’m not mad at it.
I’m not the best at making cinnamon buns, but sometimes I like to grab a pack of the Lion House Roll Mixture from Deseret Book, which is easy to make into cinnamon buns. Yum!
Picnic during the meeting
Have a Picnic During General Conference! Lay out blankets, pack your lunch in a picnic basket, and enjoy the food on the floor!
We always have a nice big treat on general conference Sunday mornings – breakfast casserole, muffins (usually bought from Costco), bacon, fruit, parfaits, juice … it’s a great way to start the morning.
We usually enjoy conferences with my parents and my brother’s family as they live nearby so everyone can contribute a little to the food.
Make your own pizza
The two-hour break between morning and afternoon general conference sessions is a great time for a fun lunch. We’re big fans of pizza here and I think it would be fun to have a “Build Your Own Pizza” bar.
You could have custom size pizza dough, English muffins or bagels, and lay out all the ingredients – pizza sauce, assorted cheeses, meat, vegetables and, if you’re like my kids – pineapple!
I would like to hear your general conference traditions! Comment on what you or your family are doing below!
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