On the first Saturday in September National Tailgating Day reminds us what the autumn colors and scents already do. Those colors signal grilling time and a season of cheering on our favorite teams!
Tailgating is the custom of gathering outside the stadium before the game with fans of the same team for food, beverages and socializing. Gatherings often take place at the tailgate of a pickup truck or the trunk of a car. However, neither are required. Staples of a tailgate party include grilling and beer, though chili competitions and recipe challenges encourage friendly competition before the game. Come hungry!
The original tailgate is unknown. Many teams take pride in claiming this title, as they should. Some writers even suggest the many observers in attendance at the Battle of Bull Run in 1861 to be the very first tailgaters, with their picnic baskets and bottles of claret prepared to watch opposing teams. Perhaps this can be considered tailgating.
Today, tailgating centers around the sport of football. While football has its roots in the game of rugby, it is generally accepted that the first football game in United States history was on November 6, 1869. The match took place between Rutgers and Princeton Universities. On that day fans arrived early to enjoy each others company and some food.
Much like building a community, tailgating hearkens back to a time when pioneering villages would come together to raise the framework of a building. Often followed by a large meal and perhaps a sporting competition of sorts, communities looked forward to these harvest traditions year after year.
Those who tailgate come back every year, weekend after weekend. Couples meet. Families grow. Bonds are forged – all
through the community of tailgating.
With Covid19 this year there will be a lot less tailgating. You can still host a small number of friends even without a game. Make it a family night in your own backyard. Grilling and Chili and any other favorites help set the mood. For the adults don’t forget the popularity of beer. After all it would definitely be at a regular game.
If indeed there is no football choose a movie or even a board game. The importance here is who you make lasting memories with.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalTailgatingDay
Put on your team colors. Bring your game face. Whip up your best batch of jalapeno poppers and get outside to watch your favorite team play this weekend! Use #NationalTailgatingDay to post on social media.
Post your tailgating pics on one of Tailgating Challenge’s social media pages:
NATIONAL TAILGATING DAY HISTORY
Luke Lorick, president of Tailgating Challenge, founded National Tailgating Day as a way to share his passion for the sport of tailgating.
Tailgating Challenge is one of the largest tailgating companies in the world, and Lorick sees the joy and friendships tailgating brings to many Americans every day. To learn more about Tailgating Challenge visit the website at www.tailgating-challenge.com.