Tailgating- cool weather, loud music, the smell of hotdogs being cooked on the grill. This is how sports fans everywhere prepare to watch their favorite team out on the field, and hope they run away with a victory.
People stake out early the morning of game day and set up grills, games and televisions for a day filled with football.
“Collegiate or professional tailgates are different because everyone comes together to get excited, it’s so fun,” senior Maddie Simonds said.
At the Ohio State University’s Stadium, fans from all over Ohio (not just college students), stake out their place in parking lots all over downtown.
“The Buckeye tailgates are really fun because you’re on campus and there’s a ton of people that go. My family and I like to meet up with friends and set up all of our favorite foods and we also like to set up a TV and watch different football games before the Ohio State game,” sophomore Katy Schroeder said.
Tailgates can come in all different sizes and while some people tailgate at stadiums, others host their own weekly “football watching” parties at their house.
“I love having family and friends over on game days, especially when it’s a big game. We always have the classic football party food like chips and dip and we like to grill out for all the games,” Schroeder said.
Most devoted football fans have their own traditions- they gather in the same place, they wear the same jerseys, and they never miss a game.
“Usually for the Buckeyes games we have family over and we all like watching the games together. One of my favorite traditions is my mom’s buffalo dip, she makes it for every game,” Schroeder said.
What about high school tailgates? The student section leaders, Frankie Rivelle and Kevin Burt, host tailgates before every game.
“Orange’s tailgates are so fun because you get to go with all of your friends and everyone in our class and get excited for the game,” Simonds said.
Most of the people that attend the tailgates are seniors who are trying to make the most of their last year as high school students.
“It’s a lot of fun to spend time with people in your class outside of school, and for seniors to celebrate their last year here at Orange,” Simonds said.
So, why do we tailgate? Fans tailgate to show their devotion to the players and their love of the game, showing off their spirit is something they live for.
“I like to tailgate because it gets my sprits up before the game and gets me excited,” Schroeder said.