As we all know, the fall sports season won’t be the same this year. But there’s no reason to cancel that tailgating party. You can still capture that same spirit of game-day fun in the back yard or front porch. (Or, for an even more authentic tailgating experience, set up the pre-game party in the back end of your car or truck. Why not?) Whether football, soccer, UFC Fight Night or a sports documentary is on the roster, stay tuned for some tips on making your homegating party something to cheer about.
CREATE A SAFE ZONE
If you’re planning to invite a few people from outside your household, be sure to check your local government’s COVID-19 guidelines around gatherings. And make sure everyone at the party feels comfortable with the game plan:
- Keep the party outside
- Arrange chairs six feet apart for easy social distancing
- Set out bottles of hand sanitizer for your guests
- Hand out sports-themed masks for your guests to wear and take home after the party (who doesn’t love a door prize?)
WAYS TO WATCH
Viewing the game on a big screen from the comfort of your couch might be just the ticket. But if you’ve got guests, or you want to channel that outdoor-stadium feeling, here are a few ways you can catch the action:
- If you decide to wheel your TV outside, you’ll definitely need to shelter the screen from the sun’s glare. If you don’t have a shady spot, you can create one with a tent or patio umbrella. Just be sure to bring your TV back inside as soon as the party’s over to protect it from the elements. Leaving it outside could shorten its life or fry the circuitry—not to mention voiding the warranty.
- Another outdoor viewing option: Set up a couple of laptops and stream the game.
- For the ultimate in social distancing, ask guests to bring their own devices. (Of course, you’ll need a fast connection and a strong Wi-Fi signal.)
- If you’re a big-time homegating fan, consider investing in a projector or an outdoor TV.
GAME DAY IS ALSO FOOD AND BEER DAY
Even if cooking isn’t your thing, we’ve got you covered with these easy-to-make, oh-so-delicious recipes to kick off the party—and keep it in play.
BBQ BEER MEATBALLS
- 1 lb ground beef
- ½ lb ground pork
- ½ lb ground bison
- 2 eggs, whipped
- 4 cloves garlic, pressed
- 2 tbsp chives
- 1½ tbsp onion powder
- ½ cup potato chips, finely crushed
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp butter
- Splash of beer (Märzen or other malty beer)
Spicy BBQ Sauce Ingredients:
- ½ cup ketchup
- 1 tbsp hot sauce
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp white vinegar
- In the 3.7-qt. pot from the Base Camp Cook Set or 4.75-qt. pot from the Even Heat Camp Pro Cook Set combine all meatball ingredients and mix thoroughly. Form meatballs, 1½ inches in diameter, and chill for at least 20 minutes before cooking.
- Add oil to frying pan and heat. Add meatballs and cook over medium-high heat until the internal temperature reaches 160F (about 4 minutes per side). Remove meatballs, place in the Stay Hot Camp Crock, and cover.
- Deglaze frying pan with butter and a splash of beer. Stir and let simmer for 1 minute. Combine BBQ sauce ingredients and add to pan. Simmer over medium-high heat until reduced by half, about 7–8 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent burning.
- Remove pan from heat and pour sauce over meatballs. Garnish with more chopped chives. Keep meatballs in the Stay Hot Camp Crock for easy transporting and serving. (Meatballs will stay hot for 12 hours.)
STANLEY’S BOMB BEER CHEESE
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 8 oz Cheddar cheese, shredded
- 8 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 cup beer
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- Melt cream cheese in a large saucepan over medium heat.
- Stir in remaining ingredients. Continue stirring until melted.
- Pour mixture into a Stay Hot Camp Crock to keep things at the perfect temperature for 12 hours.
- Serve with pretzel bites, tortilla chips, bread, or sliced veggies.
Options: Add caramelized onions, crispy bacon bits, salsa, or sauteed hot peppers.
- Porter beer
- Cold brew coffee
Options: Try a flavored porter, like vanilla, chocolate, or pumpkin. You can also add a splash of cream.