So you are not a football fan, but everyone you know is a die-hard fan? This is a party for you. If it’s homecoming weekend andyou feel slightly pressured to show some school spirit, hosting a tailgate is the answer. You can enjoy delicious food, plenty of drinks, and good company all while supporting (or pretending to support) the team. Whether your team manages to score a big win or not, a tailgate complete with the above essentials will prove to be a winning solution. And no tackling is necessary!
What: Homecoming Tailgate (in the Parking Lot)
For: Your fellow fans – including classmates, dormmates, alum, and newly made friends in the parking lot
When: On Homecoming Weekend, beginning a few hours before kickoff so you can eat, drink, be merry and still make the game or the first big play.
What to Eat: Guacamole and bean dip are crowd-pleasing appetizers that are easy to prepare and serve (no plates required). For fancier fare, make sides such as pasta salad or corn pudding. If you are dining with tailgating pros then a grill with burgers is a must. Finally, desserts such as simple No Bake Peanut Butter balls or Peanut M&M Blondies will make a win only sweeter. If possible, make food in your school colors.
What to Drink: If you are getting started early for a noon kickoff, consider serving guests Mulled Pear Cinnamon Cider or a Pick-Me-Up Coffee treat (both of these hot drinks travel well in a large thermos). For an afternoon tailgate, Rosemary Sangria is not only a pretty drink, but packs a powerful punch. Of course, a variety of beers and wines are sure to be a hit.
How to Set the Scene: Have plenty of chairs and tables available along with a cooler or several coolers… and for the true tailgaters a grill is necessary. Throw in a couple of fleece blankets (preferably in your team’s colors) to use as a picnic blanket and later as a stadium blanket. Pompoms are optional, but recommended.
Attire: Your team colors –show some team spirit! Face paint is not a bad idea. At least try to avoid wearing the opposing team’s colors!
Caroline Ariail is a senior at the University of Georgia where she studies journalism. She would rather tailgate (with delicious food and good company) than attend the game any day!