NFL football season kicks off this weekend and football festivities are in full swing. Many people, including myself, are planning tailgate parties, even if they are enjoying the game in the comfort of their living room, or sitting in their own backyard. Several factors determine how successful your gathering will be. Here are a few tailgate party tips to keep the party rolling along.
- BYOB. Bring your own ball. Throwing around the football adds a little excitement to the party and keeps the kids involved. Rather than borrowing your child’s football to play catch with the adults, bring your own and maybe a few extra.
- Serve delicious food. Part of the fun of a tailgate party is going through the buffet line. Have plenty of food, snacks and a variety of different beverages. Encourage your friends to bring their own favorite tailgate dish along with a recipe to share. Here is one of my personal favorites, courtesy of Kiolbassa Sausage.
- Bring an extra set of clothes for the kids. Kids always find a way to get dirty. One of the often overlooked tailgate party tips is to keep a change of clothes handy. When your 5 year old comes running up covered in mud this will keep you from having to leave the party early.
- Inventory your tools of the trade. By now your tailgate checklist should be in place. Among the list; barbecue pit, charcoal (unless you have a gas grill), matches, serving platters, cooking utensils, sturdy plates, paper towels, coolers with lots of ice, bottles of water, an assortment of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, folding chairs, bug spray and sunscreen. Of course, there are more, but you get the idea.
- Dress to have fun. You can’t catch a football in platform shoes. Dress cute, but comfortable and sport your team’s colors.
- Be considerate of your neighbors. Be aware of your volume, whether it’s from your party’s screaming fans or the loud celebratory music. Your neighbors may not have a problem with the festivities, especially if they are part of the guest list.
- Have fun. Win or lose, make it a point to display good sportsmanship and have a great time spending the afternoon and evening with your friends.