Tailgating 101

It’s back to school time. What better season to get schooled in the basics of tailgating? While it may seem easy, pulling together a great tailgating event takes some serious effort. Start your season off right with a little planning help from the merchants at Point Shop Mall:

Prep. There’s nothing worse than realizing you’ve forgotten something that is key to making your tailgate a success. Can tailgaters even live without wet napkins? Start the party off on the right foot a few days before leaving the house by putting a plan on paper so nothing is forgotten.

Food. No, seriously. People will expect it. So, why not surprise them with some unusual fare they don’t typically see at the average tailgate party? Of course, we’re talking things that can be grilled, just shake it up a little. From reindeer sausages to smoked Alaskan salmon, Alaska Sausage & Seafood is full of unique tastes that will have your guest’s mouths watering until the next big game. Aim to have it ready 1 hour before game time so there’s plenty of time to eat, clean up, and get to your seats.

Paper products. Make it easy on yourself by packing all of your paper needs ahead of time. From plates and napkins, to trash bags and towels. Make a list of must have items and get them ready to go. Don’t forget a first aid kit, with plenty of bandages for those big kids who like the relive the game play by play.

Comfy places to sit. From the perfect tailgating blanket, to roomy chairs that allow for hours of catching up before the big event, don’t forget to pack a place for everyone to sit, plus a few extra for wandering tailgaters you might meet along the way.

A cooler full of drinks. Make an event special with a fun libation that goes along with your outing. And, plan for every age group. Festive cups or ones that boast team colors will help make the party special.

Games to play. From a simple game of catch to a well-planned corn-hole tournament, adding some extra activities to the day will help you connect with your crowd, and keep them entertained for hours.

Cheer gear. Ok, so you’re not the average cheerleader, but you certainly want to represent your team, right? From a jersey bearing your favorite players number, to face paint that will spell out your love for your team colors, be sure to cheer them on in style.

Timing. Parking at large events can easily eat into your tailgating time if you don’t plan for it in advance. Plan to arrive 3 to 4 hours before the event, allowing plenty of time for traffic. There’s nothing worse than planning a tailgate bonanza, only to realize it’s a bust because of time.

Parking. Note: not all tailgating spots are created equal. That’s right. If given a choice, choose an end spot, one with shade, or one near a grassy area. Once everyone’s hunkered down, you’ll appreciate the extra space.

A friendly face. What makes tailgating great? Meeting people that love the same things you do! Allow time between cooking and hosting to meet your fellow tailgaters. Next game, you might combine efforts for even more fun.

Tailgating is one of the best things about fall. Spend more time enjoying your tailgate event, and less time worrying about having it all together with these helpful hints. It's easy with help from the merchants at PointShop Mall.

Posted: Wednesday, August 06, 2014