Tailgating 2013: The Good Old Days

2013-09-27T12:00:00Z 2013-10-01T21:55:13Z Tailgating 2013: The Good Old DaysJoe Drozda and Bob Bley nwitimes.com
September 27, 2013 12:00 pm  • 

Joe Drozda and Bob Bley are writing the third edition of The Tailgater’s Handbook which will be published in 2014. Drozda is considered the “Father of American Tailgating” by many including The Wall Street Journal. Drozda and Bley both grew up in NW Indiana and attended Indiana University together.

For you members of the younger generation, here’s a little history lesson. There was a time when college and professional football games all started at 1 p.m. local time. Back then fans could sleep until they woke-up, without setting an alarm clock! Fans had their breakfasts at home and then leisurely traveled to the stadium, letting the game and autumn beauty of the day unfold naturally. Back then the college season started in September and ended in November; football games were the campus event on Saturday afternoon. For us “old-timers”, game-day memories are of blue skies and puffy white clouds above the changing color of the leaves. Unfortunately, things have changed and because of the dollars of television advertising, those days are probably gone forever.

TV sports networks, looking to maximize their audiences, now give us morning games at 11 a.m. or night kick-offs at 8 p.m. Now, we either leave in the dark or return home in the dark, or if we live far enough away, both! Those fall morning tailgates can be chilling and breezy so here are some simple suggestions to help make everyone more comfortable:

• Plan ahead when you park and setup - use your vehicle (or other available devices) as a wind screen

• Try to orient the tailgate setup so the seating will be in the sun

• Serve hot food and heat it at your tailgate to provide warmth

For a great breakfast recipe that will not only warm your guests, but also please their taste buds, try this favorite from Mary Dee Daily (Purdue University).

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