Pin The Tail on the Donkey Games and Variations

Pin the Tail on el Burro

Pin the Tail on the Donkey has been one of the most popular birthday party games for generations. Everyone knows the rules - you put the blindfold on the child, put a paper tail in their hand, spin them around a few times and point them in the direction of a cut-out paper donkey taped to the wall. The child that gets their tail the closest to the donkey's hindquarters wins. But did you know you can take this premise and create variations for almost every party theme?

You can purchase the classic Pin the Tail on the Donkey Game or some of the variations and suggestions, listed below. Use one of the pin games that we have created or get some ideas that you can use to create your own.

What You'll Need:
  • A large poster board and marker to cut out and design your desired pin theme. You can also use a store bought poster or take a picture to the copy shop and have it enlarged.
  • construction paper or other material such as felt or balloons to create the item that gets pinned
  • Double sided tape
  • A Pen or Marker
  • A blindfold

Before The Party:

Create enough "tails" for every player and write their name on it so you can easily keep track of whose tail is whose.. Tape the poster to a wall in the party area, keeping the height of your guests in mind.

At the Party:

Choose a child to play first, and blindfold him or her. Place a piece of tape on the back of a "tail", and hand it to the player. Depending on the age of the player, have him or her stand anywhere between 3' and 10' away from the poster on the wall. Spin them around a couple of times (you can omit this if you like), let the player walk forward and try to correctly place the pin. Repeat until every player has had a turn.

Whoever places their tail closest to the correct spot is the winner! If you wish, you can award all players a small prize, such as a sticker or piece of candy, and award a larger prize to the winner.

Animal Pin Games

There a all kinds of animals that you can pin the tail on. You can use them for a variety of party themes. Remember, we give you the general idea and you can make it your own to suit your birthday party perfectly.

Pin the Bug on the Flower

Pin The Bee on the Flower

This fun variation can include a ladybug on a daisy, a bumble bee on a colorful flower or even a fly on the pie. It is a great idea for spring and summer parties and garden birthdays. The winner will be the one that gets closest to the center of the flower.

Pin the Frog on the Lily Pad

Are you having a princess party and you need a few frogs to turn in to princes or do you need a frog for an amphibian birthday party. Either way you can create the appropriate giant lily page and frog cutouts for this variation. To determine the winner choose the frog that is closest to the center of the lily pad. To mark the spot you can draw the outline of the frog in the appropriate place.

Pin the Horn on the Unicorn

Pin The Horn Game

Every fairytale birthday or pony party would benefit from a round of Pin the Horn on the Unicorn. You can use poster board to make a profile of a horse head or find a poster of a beautiful horse. Mark a spot on the horses head where the horn should go. The winner will be determined by who comes the closest.

Pin the Tail on the Dalmatian

Dalmatians are the mascot of the firehouse so this would be the perfect variation for a Fireman party. A puppy birthday theme would also be great. For a general dog theme, use the printable and color any way you wish. Dalmatian Body as well as Dalmatian Tails

Pin the Tail on the Rabbit

Depending our the way you create your rabbit cut-out, this idea could be used for an Easter party, an Alice in Wonderland theme or a Brer Rabbit birthday. You can use puffs of cotton instead of paper cut-out of tails. For this option, large cotton balls, small white blown-up balloons, or puffs of pillow batting work great. Our bunny template can be easily customized to your theme

Pin the Tail on the Zebra

Pin The Tail on the Zebra

Every party is a lot more fun when you incorporate animals into the there. For a jungle birthday, or a zoo party. This Pin the Tail on the Zebra game is a great variation on Pin the Tail on the Donkey. You can use a similar shape but the difference is in the stripes. To make things easier, simply use our Zebra Printable


Disney Pin Games

Pin the Tail on Angus

Princess Merida's horse, Angus, is her best friend and closest confidant! Pin the tail on the horse in this Disney's Brave party game! Draw Princess Merida's horse, Angus, on the butcher paper with markers or paint and make enough tails for every player

Pin the Eye on Mike

Pin The Eye On Mike

If your child loves Monsters Inc., they will love this twist on a classic pin game. Use your expert scarer skills to hit the target in this Monsters Inc. party game. It is pretty easy to make Mike Wizowski out of poster board, or you can buy Pin the Eye on Mike from Birthday in a Box.

Tangled Pin Game

Tangled is fun because you can pin the tail on Maximus but you can also pin the braid on Rapunzel. If there are boys invited to the party they might prefer to play Pin the Nose on Flynn. In this case you can use the fun Wanted Poster and draw a picture of Flynn or print one from the internet. Then you can trace his nose and make as many as you need.

Neverland Pirates Pin Game

Neverland Pirate Pin Game

Pirates use lots of tools to go on their adventures. Jake and the Never Land Pirates use their special tools to help solve pirate problems. Pin a sword on the pirate poster to win this Jake and the Never Land Pirates party game! Use the image shown here and copy it or you can also use our ready-to-play Pirate Pin Game for more pirate party game fun!


Sesame Street Pin Games

Pin the Nose on Elmo

Pin The Nose On Elmo

La la la la, La la la la, it's time to have fun with Elmo! Using red poster board, orange poster, white construction paper and a black marker board you can easily create Elmo adorable face. Cut out lots of orange Elmo noses for this fun game. As an additional variation you can cut out the same of a large fishbowl and lots of little gold fish and play Pin Dorothy to the Fishbowl.

Pin the Star on Abby Cadabby's Wand

Pin The Star on Abby's Wand

For this game you'll need a poster of Abby Cadabby holding her wand or a cut out picture of you that you draw onto poster board or butcher paper. For a fun touch you can put spray glitter on your star cutouts. After the game, add some extra double sided tape and this kids can wear their stars.


Planes and Trains

Pin the Tail on The Airplane

airplane pin game

If you child is fascinated by Jets then this pin game is a great addition to an aviation themed birthday. Other variations instead of pinning a tail are to pin the propeller to the nose of the plane or to pin the logo on the plane.

Pin the Smokestack on The Train

Train Party Pin Game

To play this pin game you will need our Train Poster as well as the Smokestack Pieces. If you are having a Thomas the Tank Engine Birthday party then use an image of Thomas but remove the black smokestack from the image and cut them from black construction paper, making one for every kid at the party.


Hello Kitty Pin Game

Hello Kitty Pin Game

For the easiest way to make a Hello Kitty Pin game we suggest purchasing our Hello Kitty Party Pinata Kit and taping the large, empty Hello Kitty pinata to your wall. All you'll need to do is cut out pink bows in the same shape as the one she is wearing. Put every child's name on a bow so you can keep track of the players. After the game is over you can stuff the pinata full of the candy that comes with the kit and have another fun game to play. Of course, you can always draw an image of Hello Kitty on poster board and use that instead.


Karate Pin Game

Pin the Black Belt on the Ninja

This game is fun for karate birthday parties and karate tournament parties. You can find templates online that are very easy to replicate. If you child belongs to a dojo you can even print the name of it on the belts. If you are having a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles party a great variation would be to Pin the Mask on the Ninja Turtle. You can make one face and cut our masks in purple, blue, green and red.


Olivia Pin Game

Olivia the Pig Party Ideas

If you don't think you can draw a picture of Olivia we suggest using the Mylar Olivia Balloon and taping it (not inflated) to the wall. Then create tiaras and red bows from construction paper to pin on her head.


Plant a Kiss on the Rock Star Pin Game

Kiss a Rock-Star

This is a fun game that girls and pre-teens will love. The best part is that you can alter this game to any pop star. All you need is a poster and a bunch of lip shapes cut from red construction paper. Do you have a Belieber in your house? Love One Direction? Here's their chance to plant a smooch on the singer of their dreams! The one that pins their "kiss" closest to the pop star's lips wins!


Pin the Nose on the Snowman

Photo of Child Playing Snowman Pin Game

Pin the Nose of the Snowman can be played and winter birthdays as well as Christmas Parties. Additional variations of this idea can include Pin the Hat on Frosty and Pin the Nose on Olaf for a Frozen Party.


Pin the Symbol on the Transformer

Transformers Symbols

The battle between the Autobots and the Decepticons rages across the galaxy! Pin your symbol on the Transformer to win this Transformers party game! You can create a Transformer from poster board, use a pre-printed poster or you can even tack a Transformers costume to the wall.


Pin the Eye on the Muno

Pin The Eye On Muno Game

DJ Lance wants to challenge all of the kids to a fun game of Pin the Eye on Muno. As you know Muno is a one-eyed red monster but he is as sweet as can be. All of the kids can have a chance to pin his eye as closed to the center of his head as possible. Muno is a very easy character to create for a Pin Game. All you need is some red poster board and some black and white construction paper. Use the image we show here as your guide and this will be one of the easier games you organize for you child's Yo Gabba Gabba Party.


"Pin the Tail" games can be created for any theme. Nearly every character that you like can be made into a pin game. That goes for all ages as well. You can come up with creative pin games for bachelorette parties, retirement parties and even baby showers just to name a few. If you have any suggestions feel free to let us know about them and we can add them to our list. Contact us at

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