Hosting a Tailgate Party for Your Favorite Football Team

For many, the best part of going to a football game happens before the game even begins -- the tailgating party. A tailgating party is part pep rally, part garden party and part barbeque. A good party for tailgating for your favorite team should include some team-specific decorations and game-specific fun to rouse up some animosity for your opponents. Through building up excitement for the game you're about to watch, you'll build up unity among your circle of friends.

Plan your meal

Think about the kind of food you want to prepare. You may want to go traditional -- burgers and dogs and chicken on the grill. You may have some exotic ideas for grilled fish tacos or the like. Check your guest list, find out what they enjoy (or what their limits on experimenting are) and go shopping. Even if you do decide to go exotic, keep a few sausages or some ground beef on hand for the football purists.

Get your gear

You'll need everything you'd need for a barbeque -- a grill, utensils, seating and some bags for garbage. Perhaps the most important item for the guests will be the coolers for the alcoholic beverages, something big with wheels.

Yet your tailgating party is a prelude to another event. You'll want to keep that in mind as you plan. Your gear list should include plenty of decorations representing your favorite team, and perhaps even a physical reminder of your team's opponent for the day.

For those who find the actual game of more interest than the pregame festivities, you should consider providing a portable television or radio so the fanatic can get all the inside scoop on the game. Have a football on hand to toss around.

Don't forget your camera!

There are games, and then there are games

It's likely everyone at the tailgate party will be stuffing their faces and downing brews while chatting with each other. But part of the fun of the tailgate party is getting excited for the game to follow. With that in mind, consider some events or games to get everyone ready for the contest. Get everyone cheering for your favorite team and booing the opposition.

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Tailgating has become a national pastime for sports lovers everywhere because it gives you the opportunity to show off your team spirit, not to mention your grilling skills. Knowing what to expect and being ready for the weather conditions will help ensure that you have a good time.

At a tailgate party, people congregate, grill food, drink beverages, and play some picnic games. Sometimes the guests have the tailgate party a few hours before the sporting event, go to the event and then go home. Other times, the whole event takes place at the tailgate party, including listening to the game on a radio or watching the action on a portable TV.

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Big or small, your tailgate party needs to be well-planned in order to succeed, so start by creating a list of tailgating supplies. Go beyond setting up lawn chairs and eating sandwiches, and get the right accessories to make a truly memorable party atmosphere right before the big game.

Cheering your favorite sports team on with a tailgate party can be a lot of fun, and you may be surprised to learn that it doesn't have to cost a lot of money. For fun ways to turn your next tailgate party into a thrifty affair, consider the following.

There is a giant misconception that to have a great tailgate one needs to have a $5,000 grill, Omaha Steaks, and beer that is imported. That is not the way to have a great American Tailgate. There are a few necessities needed and a few luxuries that are often overlooked.

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