Everything I know about tailgating I learned in college. That was an amazing few years of being able to drop everything on a Saturday and gather with friends over a great spread of food, a cold beverage and the building anticipation of my Mizzou Tigers winning the game so we could continue the party afterwards.
…Fast forward a dozen years and things are quite a bit different with small kids and an early call time on Monday mornings. But what remains the same, is the desire to cheer on our team along with our friends and family.
Being a few hours away from my husband’s hometown team (Go Chiefs!) means our tailgate parties are usually at home. Our very small children still have nap times and high chairs to manage, so making our home into an indoor family friendly tailgate is something we did last year around the holidays and hope to repeat again this year!
Here are a few ideas to help you recreate a great no-fuss tailgate from those glory days, right in the comfort of your own home!
Find a Date
Check your favorite teams schedule and pick a date! I particularly like the Sunday afternoon & evening games, most people aren’t too scheduled with other activities. Also, with the holidays approaching, capitalizing on those weekends with family in town will make for an extended celebration.
Set the Menu
We tend to prepare food that many people can enjoy and easily serve themselves. Last year was a big pot of Chili and all of its fixin’s, this year I’m thinking a slow cooker pulled pork recipe with our favorite Kansas City BBQ seasoning and sauce as a nod to my husband’s hometown team & food. With the main dish set, let everyone know – Family and friends are great about bringing drinks, sides and snacks, so ask them to bring the rest!
Attire & Decor
Pull out all of your wearable gear for your favorite team! Set aside any extras for friends and family who are cheering on the team with you. As for decorations- we hang our large flag and this year I’ll have the small kids get out the crayons and make their own signs to hang around the house.
Relax and enjoy the game!
Put your feet up, play or color with kids during the game and enjoy cheering your favorite team on to victory! During halftime, a board game, a featured dessert or cupcakes can be served to energize everyone for the second half.
Enjoy your company
The one thing that stands out about tailgating to me is that ANYONE is welcome. I can remember being out of state as a visiting tailgater before a game and several people inviting me over as a complete stranger to enjoy a snack. There’s nothing like it. We continue welcome anyone into our home who is up for a fun time and a great game! I’m looking forward to continuing the tradition of a family football tailgate for years to come. I sure hope that my kids will remember the times we shared together with our family on Football Sundays and take the tradition along with them for years to come.
This post is sponsored by Football Matters, in partnership with City Mom Collective.