Get to the Game: Avoiding Ticket Scams

ticketsThere’s nothing that beats a good football game, and while watching it at home with friends is great, going to the games is even better. Unfortunately, you can’t trust every ticket source these days.

Many times, scalpers will try to sell you tickets that are no good. This doesn’t just apply to the guys who stand outside the stadium or walk around the tailgating area, either. Sometimes online sources are less than trustworthy. It can be difficult to navigate this confusing area of football ticket purchases, but with a few tips, you’ll be okay.

Mixed Drinks to Spruce up Your Tailgating Experience

sangriaThere’s no question that beer is often the beverage of choice when tailgating. The reasons is simple- beer is easy. Simply pop a top and refreshment awaits you. Sometimes, however, we want a little bit more from our tailgating experience. With just a little effort, you can create a cocktail masterpiece. Here are a few excellent mixed drinks for your next tailgate party.

College vs. Pro: Who Tailgates Better?

3920356908_9a75563780Tailgating is a time honored sports tradition. From college campuses to professional football stadiums, it’s all about food and fun- and bragging rights. So, who offers the best tailgating experience- college or pro football?

Atmosphere

The college football atmosphere is completely different from that at an NFL tailgating experience. Sure, each individual school and team has their own nuances and traditions, but generally speaking, an NFL tailgating experience is focused more on comfort and fun. A college tailgating atmosphere, however, is much like college

The Five Best College Tailgating Experiences

6120292541_030541af7dCollege campuses offer a variety of tailgating traditions and experiences. While some are extravagant displays of culinary expertise, others are more focused on the basics, consisting of little more than a few fold-up chairs and a six-pack.

If you’re looking for a college football tailgating experience to rival all others, here are five of the best pregame entertainment experiences college football has to offer.

Tailgating With Pets

tailgating_dogBringing your favorite animal with you to tailgate can make for a very enjoyable experience. If you’re not careful, however, it can turn into a nightmare. A lot of it depends on how well behaved your pet is, and the rest is a matter of how prepared you are.

Variety is the Spice of Tailgating

tailgating_spiceIf you have a large group when you tailgate it can be difficult to please everyone. But it is possible with a little planning and a lot of flexibility. The most important thing to remember is that different people will have different tastes. You won’t be able to make everyone happy unless you have a diverse offering of food and drinks.

As far as drinks are concerned, you need a wide range. Beer is always a good choice, but you should have a few different kinds. Some people like ale, some people like lager. Some people like light beer, and some people like dark beer.

Healthy Tailgating Options

healthy_tailgateIt almost seems like there’s no place for the health-conscious football lover these days. Every time you go to a tailgate, you’re likely to be surrounded by alcoholic beverages, greasy hamburgers and wings. It doesn’t have to be like that, though. If you take matters into your own hands, you can enjoy a healthy tailgating experience.

What About Drinks?

3337299224_161a1e398cAlong with food, drinks are vital to a successful tailgate – without drinks it’s hardly even a tailgate. But what is right to bring, and how much? As with any other element of the tailgate, figuring out what you will need to properly stock the coolers is an important consideration which you definitely do not want to overlook

Feeding Your Fellow ‘Gaters

Cal Tailgate PartyThe two staples of tailgating are burgers and hot dogs; however, these are not the only options. Many people opt for something with a bit more flair, such as brisket or some kind of sausage. I’ve even seen people bust out a portable Teppanyaki grill in the parking lot!

The Tailgater’s Essentials

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Every great game is preceded by a great tailgate – however, how many times have you arrived at the stadium only to find that you’ve forgotten an essentialelement of the tailgate formula? Below is a complete checklist of everything you should need, so as to ensure that these avoidable disasters become a thing of the past.

Watermelon Makes a Perfect Tailgate Dessert/Drink

WatermelonWhen it comes to selecting a desert for your next tailgate party, is there anything more American and tailgate appropriate than watermelon?

A distant cousin to the cucumber, pumpkin and squash, watermelon is delicious plain or gussied up and loaded with healthy attributes.

Tailgating at Minneapolis’ Target Field

Target FeildAlthough the area surrounding Target Field, home of the Minnesota Twins, is not the ideal set up for a tailgate parting, there are lots within the ballpark’s vicinity that allow pre-game congregations of eating, drinking, playing catch and talking hardball with friends.

Dry Rub 101

dry rubDry rubs are seasoning mixtures that are massaged onto various meats before they are cooked. They have become popular as a way to add flavor and help the meat retain its natural juices during cooking. They also have become as essential to the tailgating experience as charcoal, ice cubes and tickets.

Any rub should be applied to the meat well before it is to go on the grill – 24 hours is ideal, although an hour or two would suffice if time is a factor. Make sure all sides of the meat are covered evenly, then cover and refrigerate the meat until it is time to go on the grill.

There are several basic seasonings that are found in many simple dry rub recipes, many of which can be found in almost any cabinet or pantry. Preparing the dry rub and applying it on the meat is best to do before heading to the tailgate. Some of the most common dry rub seasonings are salt (go easy here, too much can make the meat dry), garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, thyme, pepper (black, red, white), sage and even brown sugar.

10 Tips for Throwing the Perfect Tailgate Party

tailgate partyAre you are the go-to planner when it comes to putting together a successful tailgateparty? With a chill in the air as the football season winds down, it is more important than ever to have all the details down for your next tailgate.

It might be stressful having everyone depend on you to plan everything, but if you want it done right you have to do it yourself. Throwing the perfect tailgate is easier than it looks especially if you follow these 10 tips.

Navy Veteran Says, “Leave The Grill At Home”

Chances are if you attend any kind of sporting event you like to enjoy yourself a little before the game. But with that enjoyment comes the hassle of lugging large and heavy equipment to the stadium followed by the frustration of packing it all back up again just to clean it when you get home.

Retired Navy Lt. Cmdr. Andy Macias is here to tell you “leave those hassles at home.”

Macias launched “Andy’s Tailgate Cruiser,” after leaving the Navy and has been providing customers with a convenient and affordable alternative to purchasing, transporting, and cleaning cumbersome tailgating equipment such as grills, tents, coolers, tables, chairs and games.

Marinade Injectors: How They Work

Brisket_marinade_injectionThroughout this summer barbecuing season, many will be out with their portable grills, tailgating and attending barbecue competitions. And with all the travel involved with these summer events, it’s important to understand all the different possibilities when it comes to flavoring and marinading your meats. Barbecues everywhere are always looking for a new way to enhance the taste and quality of their meat, especially ways that cut down on mess and hassle. Whether that be keeping the meat tender, moist, or just full of flavor, there is one method that is often under-utilized: the marinade injector.

Essential Gear: The Fork Thermometer

fork tailgatingTailgating brings about its own set of challenges. Cooking from the back of a truck takes a special kind of skill and expertise- and a whole lot of practice. If your meats don’t reach proper temperatures while cooking there is a real risk of bacteria born illnesses, some of which can make you deathly ill. Knowing how to properly use the grill you have goes a long way in food safety but there is a cool little gadget every tailgate grill master should own, a meat fork thermometer.  Knowing that your meat is too cold, can really prevent poor

Jarts: Abolished 1988, In Our Hearts Forever

JartsJarts were banned from sale in the United States of America on December 19, 1988. A cold (and cold hearted) December day that will forever live in infamy. I was born just a few months earlier, in July of 1988. While I’m sure at some point I was cradled in my father’s arms during a light game of Jarts during those 5 months, I’ve never had the pleasure of playing the game myself.

Many variations have tried to take the place of Jarts over the years, but none seem to have the mystique of this once universally adored game. Why was the game banned? Who would ever do such a thing? We may never know the full extent of its eradication. Some critics contend that the game was too “dangerous”.

Cornhole: The Game Outside the Stadium

cornhole boardsSports and competition are at the heart of the tailgating experience and nowhere is this more evident than in the games we play between beer and brats. ATA will be covering all the tailgate favorites in new our series, The Sports Outside the Stadiums. First up, Cornhole.

The origin of Cornhole is murky. The earliest recording of any version of the game comes from the high seas, not the heartland of America. Some suggest that the pirate Blackbeard, whose real name was Edward Teach, tied victims at opposite ends of the ship and had his men lob 18-pound bags of barley onto their heads.

It first showed up as an organized game during the Civil War. According to a confederate soldier’s completely falsified diary entry dated April 12, 1861, Gen. P.T. Beauregard after three days of siege, challenged Union Maj. Robert Anderson to a contest of tossing small bags of corn into the mouths of cannon. The winner, Beauregard offered, would take control of the island fort. The game went on for a tense 15 hours with neither side able to win by the requisite 2 points until Anderson claimed Beauregard had stepped over the pre-determined throwing line. Incensed at the insult to his honor Beauregard opened fire on Fort Sumter in a flurry of poor sportsmanship.

Hot Spots for Family-Friendly Tailgating

family tailgatingRemember the good ole days when you and your friends packed up the grill – and the cooler – before heading to the stadium? Maybe you had a few too much to drink or bet a few too many dollars on the game.  Man that was fun! Fast-forward a few years to spouses, children and accountability. Are those days over? Absolutely not. Family time and tailgating time are not always polar opposites. There are myriad options to still get your tailgate action on with the family in tow. Check out these family-friendly hot spots next time that tailgating bug bites.