Are you ready for football season?
Tailgating is like a sport all to itself. And the best part? Your car is front and center.
Now, of course, we’re focused on the game (and the nachos), but your vehicle is a big part of the experience.
So, if you want to throw an ultimate football tailgate party, you’ve got to cover all the bases.
Here are some tips for throwing the ultimate football tailgate party.
Set the right time
The best tailgate parties start a few hours before the game. Try for at least two or three hours to give yourself enough time to enjoy the party and the company you’re with. You’ll undoubtedly meet new friends, and you may even have more fun tailgating than you do at the game.
Get some auxiliary speakers
It’s going to get noisy in that parking lot, but you’ll still want to set the mood with music. So, to make sure everyone can hear your party anthems, get a good set of auxiliary speakers. The kind that connects directly to your car is okay, but for some next-level sound, opt for Bluetooth enabled speakers that you can place in the perfect spot.
Bring a power inverter
Yes, the quality of beer you bring matters. But does a tailgate party even exist if it isn’t shared on Instagram? A power inverter turns direct currents into alternating currents, which will allow you to charge your phone and other devices. And as a bonus, you may get to be someone’s hero as their phone struggles with low battery.
Pack the right gear
If you’re in the habit of tailgating often, assemble a tailgating tool kit with all the essentials. This will include things like tongs, a spatula, spoons, forks and knives, bowls, butane fuel, cooking spray, a lighter or matches, aluminum foil, and salt and pepper.
Organize your vehicle
What good is it to have all the right tools if you can’t find them? A good tailgate party requires a lot of tools. Have them at-the-ready by keeping your vehicle organized.
Consider getting a special car organizer for your tailgating equipment.
Get a hitch
Not everyone has the right truck or SUV for tailgating, but that doesn’t mean you can’t participate. All you really need is a good hitch and cargo carrier. These are easy to install and are made to fit on the back of your vehicle. You can get a hitch for about $100, and it’s well worthwhile.
You’ll also want to add a BBQ to your trailer hitch. You can snag a hitch that attaches to the grill or swings out to the side. They can be mounted to your tow or completely separate.
Now, you don’t necessarily need to take the extra step of getting the perfect tailgating grill, but you will want one that meets your basic needs.
After all, food is a major part of the tailgating party experience.
Have the best tailgating food
You’re likely not going to be the only group tailgating at the big game (and that’s part of the fun). But this will give you a unique opportunity to be the best.
When you have all the right food and are ready and willing to share, you’re likely to make a lot of new friends and exponentially increase the fun factor.
You can use your best judgment here, but the following are a few categories you’ll probably want to hit.
- A unique dip – If you have a dip recipe that everyone requests, now is your time to shine. A good dip can keep everyone coming back for more. If you don’t have a good dip recipe already, start experimenting with a few different things. Cowboy Caviar and this “cracked out corn dip” are good places to start.
- Appetizers – Be sure to stock up on finger foods that people can consume while mingling. Things like jalapeno poppers, loaded potato skins, and hot wings typically work well. And if you want to take a Mediterranean twist, add an antipasto plate.
- Main dishes – Kebabs are always a tailgate favorite because they’re broken down into bite-sized pieces. But you should also have things like burgers, hot dogs and maybe even steak. If you want your tailgate party to stand out from the pack, consider adding a vegetarian option like veggie burgers or grilled portobello mushrooms.
Are you excited for tailgate (erm… football) season yet? What are your favorite tailgate party ideas?