Getting Started…The Basics

Tailgating has always been fun and exciting, but there is a big difference between simply tailgating and hosting a tailgate.  Hosting is not for the weak or faint of heart.  It takes quite a bit of energy to get up early, drive to the stadium, and set up.  Every stadium has different rules regarding what times and where you are allowed to set up, so it is important to look up the stadium rules if its your first time tailgating in that stadium.  In my case, since I mostly tailgated at Darrell K Royal – Texas Memorial Stadium, I would arrive the night before at 6pm to tape off my spot (it was first come first serve) and then I would be back the next morning at 6am to set up and fire up that grill for breakfast.  Fortunately I always had some help as I have a handful of friends that are just as crazy as I am for loving this stuff.

Anyways, what all do you need to get started??  At the very minimum, you will need:

Tailgating Necessities

  • Grill
  • Chairs
  • Coolers
  • Food
  • Beer/Liquor
  • Friends and Family
  • The above items are what I consider to be essential, without any of the above (except maybe chairs) its not a tailgate.  Lets take a deeper dive and review some available options regarding the tailgating necessities.

The Grill

When it comes to the grill you have two main choices; Gas or Charcoal.  There are some purists out there that believe that Charcoal is the only way to go.  While I’m inclined to agree with them when it comes to the backyard, at the tailgate site where you want ease and cleanliness I would highly recommend a propane grill.  My personal favorite is The Weber Q.  You can’t go wrong with the Weber brand.  Although not the cheapest option around, I’ve found that with the real low end models I end up replacing them at the end of the season.  This grill should last you a while if you properly maintain it.



The Chairs

Depending on how early you arrive and how late your game starts, you will presumably be doing quite a bit of sitting.  You’re going to want a nice comfy chair presumably with Blog Post 2_Chairyour teams logo on it.  My preferred place to purchase chairs is Amazon.  The biggest thing I look for is to make sure they are sturdy and have cup holders.




Theres not much to it with regards to coolers.  As long as it keeps your beer cold it works for me.  Some things to take into consideration are size and portability.  The amount of Blog Post 2_Coolerbeer you are  looking to store will dictate the size and how from your vehicle you’l
l be tailgating will dictate how portable you need it.  I’m a fan of the wheeled Igloo coolers.




Food and Beer

Your food and beer choices are strictly up to you.  You’ll need to be sure to plan ahead  because there’s nothing worse than running out of either….especially the beer.  I like your classic light beer since you are out there all day and they are less filling.  With regards to food the options are endless.  Be sure to check out our recommended tailgating recipes for ideas or feel free to share your own in the comments section.


Blog Post 2_Tailgating Pic

Next week we’ll get into some of the fun extras to really kick your tailgate up a notch.

Happy Tailgating!

The Introduction

Welcome to my first blog post.  I’m Luis De La Fuente, a 33 year old tailgating enthusiast and father to be other known as The Tailgating Dad.  Prior to learning about baby Frankie’s arrival, I had never missed an opportunity to light up the grill and tailgate before any big event.  Now, well…we’ll see what happens.  The purpose of this blog is to chronicle the adventures of tailgating while dealing with the joys of being a new father.

My passion for tailgating started back when I was at The University of Texas.  I graduated in the fall of 2005 and the five football seasons) I got to experience as an undergrad (I took a victory lap, but who doesn’t these days) planted the seed for what would end up being a passion.  The first ever tailgate I hosted was in 2009 when we played Alabama for the National Championship.  There alongside me was my mother who was kind enough to wake up at 4 am and leave by 5am to make the 2hr drive from Bakersfield California to Pasadena to ensure we got a prime parking spot.


Although it was nothing fancy, it did set up the foundation for what would later become University Tailgaters