Football season is here and our Tailgate Guide is here to take the stress out of the season! With the excitement of game day, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when getting ready for kickoff. The key to the perfect tailgate is preparation! There are plenty of essentials when it comes to tailgating and it’s important to make sure everything is packed and ready to go in order to truly maximize the fun and the energy that is all around.
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Possibly the most crucial part of a perfect tailgate is, of course, the food. Whether you’re serving pizza, burgers, wings, or dogs, you’ll need these:
- Utensils/Serving Spoons
- Large plates/platters and bowls for spreads and meals
- Hand sanitizer
- Themed straws, paper plates, cups, napkins, and table decorations
- A grill, fuel, and lighter
- Coolers and ice – one for food and one for beverages
- Plastic wrap or foil
- Foldable tables for food and for people to enjoy it!
- Trash bags, paper towels, and wipes
- Bags and containers for packing away leftovers
- Bags for bringing dirty dishes home
When you’re getting ready for game day make sure you are doing all you can ahead of time to make sure that you have more time for fun. To make things easier, create a checklist and pack the car the day before with any non-perishable items that you’ll be bringing; this will eliminate the hassle of organizing your materials the morning of. With preparation in mind, a big part of a smooth tailgate event is packing smart. It is important to think thoroughly about what to pack to make sure that nothing is ruined before the fun even begins. You can pack smartly by using plastic Ziploc bags for anything such as meat, fruit, vegetables, frozen things, etc. You can also use Tupperware for anything such as dips, sauces, or even salads to ensure the freshest food is served. Use boxes or crates to make sure that nothing gets smashed on the way to the stadium. It is always smart to pack meat at the bottom of the cooler and then consider putting anything else such as vegetables on top. You could also work to pack things in the order that you think you may use them so that you are not digging around for that one container of sauce for hours.
Now that we have food and preparation covered, there is a whole other side to tailgating and that is dealing with various weather conditions that could arise depending on where you are. When thinking about how to best prepare and deal with weather conditions, here is what we feel is most essential:
- An effective cooler
- A battery-powered, shoulder fan
- Misting bottles
- A hat
- Bug spray
- Plenty of water
- Lap blankets
- Gloves, scarves, hats
- Hand and foot warmers
- Extra fleece/sweatshirts and socks
- A kerosene heater
Finally, what tailgate is complete without lots of spirit gear? This is one of the most fun ways to show your support for your team!
- Foam fingers
- Colored beaded necklaces
With these things in mind, we are confident that you will be set up for success when it comes to your next tailgating experience. Get excited to cheer on your favorite team this season and, most importantly, have fun!