Get in the Game with Tailgating Tips for Football Season

You’ve waited all year for it, and it’s finally here! Football season has arrived, and that means weekends of tailgating with family and friends.

Entertaining from the back of your vehicle may seem challenging, but with a bit of forethought and some clever ideas, your tailgate party is sure to be a touchdown. Take a look at some winning ideas for your next football party.

Food Prep:

Your favorite team has done plenty of work before they ever step foot on the field, and the same goes for any great tailgating meal. You’ll want to do as little cooking and assembling on-site as possible, so think about what you can do ahead of time.


gift baskets from hickory farms

Photo via Food Network

Sides and salads are easy to make beforehand, but you can also pre-cook meats, which are then easy to finish off on the grill at your tailgating site. Of course, you can also skip the grill and go with easy, crowd-pleasing options like sandwiches or gourmet meat and cheese gift baskets. Beef Summer Sausage, smoked cheddar, and hot mustard are a hearty combo and perfect for casual snacking. You’ll have less work to do and more time for fun!

summer sausage and cheese gift basket

Summer Sausage and Cheese Gift Basket


Let’s be honest; a parking lot and the back end of your vehicle do not constitute the most attractive party venue. A little tailgating décor can go a long way towards setting a festive atmosphere, and there are so many fun and easy ideas to choose from.


tailgating decor from hickory farms

Photo from Scrappy Crafty Happy

Bunting is a great way to add a pop of color and team spirit to your party, and is easy to hang from your vehicle or pop-up shelter. This tutorial from Crafty Scrappy Happy is endlessly customizable and easy to make from materials you may already have.


tailgating decorations from hickory farms

Photo from Hostess with the Mostess

This football centerpiece seen on Hostess with the Mostess is super easy to create and adds a dose of whimsy to your game-day table.


tailgate party decorations from hickory farms

Red Balloons by Technicolor 76

We love this clever idea from Martie Knows Parties for a tailgating decoration that is both festive and practical. Tie a cluster of helium balloons in your team’s colors to your vehicle or tent so friends can find you in the crowd.


football party games from hickory farms

DIY game from Lowes

Pass the time, keep the kids busy, and maybe even make some new friends by bringing a few games to play at your tailgating party. Cornhole (or Bean Bag Toss as it is more commonly known outside the Midwest) is a classic choice, but don’t be afraid to get creative. This turf table idea from Lowes is not only easy to make, but it also doubles as party décor and a place to lay out your tailgate buffet filled with your variety of Summer Sausage, gourmet nuts and other gift basket items.

Every family has their own tailgating traditions; what are yours? Leave us a comment sharing how you have personalized your tailgating routine to create the perfect party, and be sure to check back soon because in our next post, we’ll be sharing some easy tailgating recipes, crowd-pleasing snacks and delicious serving ideas using Hickory Farms meat and cheese gift baskets.