As the weather cools, it just feels good to be outside grilling, laughing, relaxing, and cheering on your favorite team. Tailgating season means good food, good friends, and good games. Let the tailgating begin! Whether you camp out at the arena, the campground, or just out in your yard, the spirit of tailgating makes any sporting event more fun.
Chances are someone you know tailgates, whether it’s for the kids’ soccer game or the NFL playoffs. Tailgating is all about indulging in those extra accessories that make outdoor dining and entertaining so much fun. Consider gifting your tailgating friends something they’ll really use. Or put a few of these items on your wish list.
Here is our favorite gear for tailgating.
Tailgating starts and ends with the RV. For this kind of camping, a toy hauler is one of the best. Drop down the rear garage and you’ve got yourself an awesome indoor-outdoor entertaining space. Set up two TVs, one inside and one outside, so guests can watch the game wherever they want. Or, stream two different games at once. Deck out your patio space with plenty of seating and tables, so everyone has somewhere to put their drink. When you need a refill, just head inside and grab a cold one from the fridge.
Tailgating food often overshadows the main event–the game! Hearty and satisfying, tailgating food should be full of fresh flavor: smoked meats, savory dips, salty finger food. Level up your menu with the camp cooking trifecta: a smoker, grill, and griddle. A set of grill tools and a digital thermometer complete your chef set up. Keep it all organized in a grill caddy or basket stocked with your favorite seasonings and rubs. Feeling rusty cooking over the flame? Brush up on barbecue tips with NFL’er and RVer, Keith Sims. Don’t forget to keep the bugs away from your food with bug repellent products designed to create an invisible barrier around your campsite.
When tailgating, the patio is where the action is. It’s where people eat, sit, laugh, and enjoy the game. To make this space ultra-comfortable and inviting, get it set up right. Start with a patio mat, which helps delineate space and prevents dirt from tracking in the RV. Adorn the mat with a variety of camp chairs, like rockers, hammocks, club chairs, bean bags, and floor poufs. Create extra shade for guests with a pop-up canopy. Make the space feel festive and spirited with themed decor, like an American flag tablecloth and patio lights.
When tailgating at events like NASCAR and others, it’s unlikely you’ll have full hookups for your RV. You might be parking the RV in the center field, outside an arena, or just in the parking lot of the little league game. You’ll need an alternate source of power, like a generator, to run things like your TV and fridge. Portable RV generators set you up so you can power what you need to keep the party going.
Use our guide to finding the perfect generator for your RV.
Don’t let the weather get you down if it’s not blue skies for the game. Prepare with canopies in case of rain. Canopies with netting help keep bugs out. If the temperature drops unexpectedly as the sun goes down, be prepared with a portable heater. If it’s still unseasonably warm, stay comfortable by running a cooling fan. Get a small one that runs off a USB connection for yourself at your chair. Set up a bigger fan over the patio for the comfort of your guests.
Sure, watching the game is fun, but so is playing a game, too. Keep everyone entertained with things to do and games to play around the campsite. Any tailgating party isn’t complete with a game of corn hole (or bags). Set the boards up 9 long paces apart (about 27 feet). Paint your corn hole boards with your team colors, or use this football themed corn hole for added fun.
What do you want to get the tailgater in your life? Leave a comment below!