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Extreme Tailgating Tips

Tailgating is an art form for us. We’ve been doing it for so long that we’ve expanded it into a big event starting before sunrise and ending well after sunset on Saturdays. Our groups has become die-hard tailgaters, so much so, that we purchased a used ambulance and repainted it and designed it for our events. It’s a great vehicle with lots of storage to keep all of our stuff together. Makes it simple to setup and breakdown. Now we know most tailgaters won’t go to these extreme lengths for their group.  To make your party go smoother, I’ve listed a few tips we’ve learned over the years from our experiences:tailgating


  • Multiple coolers are a must. You will need coolers for; fresh ice, which guests will use to fill drinking cups, raw food, prepared foods, non-alcoholic drinks, and alcoholic beverages.
  • Mark coolers so your guests do not have to hunt for their favorite drinks. i.e. “Cokes” “Water” etc.


  • Do not leave out for more than an hour. Keep a cooler on standby to cover and maintain the temperature.
  • Keep warm with chafing dishes.
  • If you use chafing dishes you will need to bring a couple gallons of water for the water pans.
  • Keep food cold by packing in coolers with plenty of ice. Keeping the temperature below 40F is best.
  • Keep raw foods and meat separate from prepared foods. Bring a cooler just for meat items, packed with ice.
  • Make sure you have a variety of foods for your guests including healthy choices such as fruit and vegetables.


  • Supply moist towelettes or paper towels for your guests.
  • Serving bowls with see through lids are recommended to keep bugs at bay.
  • Use a separate table for food and a different table for alcoholic beverages.
  • 9×9 tents with logos/banners are recommended to help keep your guests dry and mark your tailgate space.
  • Bring a few strings of lights for evening games. Be sure to hang them up during setup then when it gets dark all you have to do is plug them up.
  • Bring jumper cables-if you don’t need them you can bet that a novice fan who will.
  • Take a gas generator and pre-made house to put around it to keep the noise level down.
  • Use floor length tablecloths to hide extra chips and other packed goods under the table.
  • Bring extra trash cans/trash bags to keep your tailgate clean and trash free.
  • A separate container can be used for all dirty linens.

Other Things to Note

  • Please empty storage containers under the tables so you have one location for dishes after they are empty.
  • Organize your tailgate gear in color appropriate storage containers. This makes it easier for other people to help you set-up and clean up.
  • Using as much logo accessories and school colors as possible will help make your tailgate more festive.
  • Continually make rounds and keep your tailgate looking nice. Although it is an outdoor event, your guest will appreciate a clean environment.
  • Make sure an guest that smoke step away from your tailgate so they don’t infringe on other non-smokers area. Smoke is something that travels and you don’t want your non-smoking guests to worry about secondhand smoke!
  • If you use plastic/reuseable plates, forks, or cups provide a decorative storage container for guests to use after they finish eating. The deeper the better, it will keep down the smells of the dirty dishes.
  • Make sure you have games, such as horse shoes, bean bags, or washers available for the kids to play. Extra footballs to toss around are great too. You want them to enjoy the tailgate just as much as the adults do.
  • When your tailgate is over, make sure you clean up your space and keep in looking nice.

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