Tailgating Ideas

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Featured Gear Friday: Tailgate Partymate

Posted by Dave On November - 18 - 2011

Since starting this tailgating blog back in 2007, we have tested, tried and demonstrated a lot of tailgating gear and written a lot of tailgating product reviews. Some good and some bad. But because we are a blog, a great product we discovered two or three years ago may be lost in the tons of posts we have published after discovering it. Maybe you are a new reader and haven’t had the time to pour through every single post we have done in the past four years. So in order to help out the tailgaters that might not have read about some of these cool tailgating products, we will be doing a feature on products we reviewed a while ago. We call it Featured Gear Friday and this week’s product is: The Tailgate Partymate.

Tailgate Partymate

We all could use some extra room to spread out while tailgating. Typically you have to bring multiple folding tables to get the adequate table space you need to serve food or to have a place to eat. Now comes a brilliant tailgating invention that provides two tailgating tables that attach to your tow hitch and ride safely outside your vehicle. No more hauling tables in and out of your car or truck. Simply lock it into place and drive it home. It’s called the Tailgate PartyMate. Check out the video to see how quickly the Tailgate Partymate sets up.

Necessity is the mother of all invention and the Tailgate PartyMate is no exception. The inventor of the Tailgate Party Mate, Corky Bless, created it in order to provide more flat surfaces while tailgating. While tailgating during baseball season, his grill and other items were taking up too much room on the unfolded tailgate of his truck. There was no room for his wife to prepare the other foods. He came up with the basic design and started welding in his shop at home. After a few prototypes, the Tailgate Party Mate is now in commercial production. The price has gone down drastically since the first prototypes were built and that makes the Tailgate Partymate quite affordable.

You can buy your own Tailgate Partymate directly from our online tailgating store, Shop.TailgatingIdeas.com. The Tailgate Party Mate runs $124.95 plus flat $25 shipping. Click HERE to see more photos and videos of the Tailgate Partymate.


Posted by Dave On August - 17 - 2010

Tablevogue while tailgatingMost of you tailgaters would like to have your tailgating space look as good and put together as possible. Just because you are in the middle of a parking lot doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice class while tailgating. We’ve all got that folding utility table that fits nicely into our cars and SUVs but normally it is just hanging out looking a little bare. Some may utilize one of those plastic or vinyl tablecloths but those can be a bit tacky. Introducing the Tablevogue.

I am going to come clean here. When I was first approached by the folks over at Tablevogue to give their tablecloth a try, I was a little skeptical. After all, what’s the big deal? It’s a table cloth that fits over a utility table. Well, I was right on that account that it is just that simple. When I actually used the product, I found it was very useful for tailgating. Take a look at the Tablevogue in use below:

As you can see in the above photos, the Tablevogue is tailored to the exact dimensions of a utility tables. Just unfold it and place it on top of your table and it fits perfectly. No more adjusting it to see if one side is hanging too low or one end is too short. Just make sure the corners are in place and the Tablevogue fits like a glove.

Another thing I like about the Tablevogue is that the sides act as curtains so you can use the underneath portion of your table for storing tailgating gear that needs to be accessible at some point, but out of the way for the most part. The Tablevogue covers those items up and gets them out of plain sight. For those tailgaters that like to live on the edge and bring in “tailgating contraband” such as beer kegs without a permit, glass bottles in a “no glass” zone, etc., Tablevogue provides the ultimate cover. (Not that I am encouraging any of you tailgaters to go out and break the rules but I do live in reality and know that some of you like to bend the rules.) Another great idea for the Tablevogue would be to hide DJ speakers underneath your table. That way if security is looking for amplified musical equipment (and you are playing your musical at a reasonable level, Snoop Dogg) there is no need for them to stop by and poke around.

We took the Tablevogue tailgating with us to the Chargers/Bears pre-season game this past weekend. Naturally, as you would expect, we used our table to hold a multitude of things including using it as a buffet table. We served up some great Carne Asada complete with guacamole and salsa. As with any tailgate, there are going to be some drips and spills on your table. While at the parking lot, we would spot clean the spills with either a paper towel or one of those pre-moistened anti-bacterial wipes. The food drips and spills came right up and didn’t leave anything behind. Upon returning home, we put the Tablevogue in the washing machine and we couldn’t tell where there was previously a drip or spill. So we just folded it up and placed it back in the tailgating kit and now it is ready to go for next weekend’s football game.

The Tablevogue comes in a variety of colors including lots of neutral colors. You may want to get a neutral color Tablevogue if you go tailgating for college and pro football and the teams’ colors you root for don’t match. The Tablevogue comes in three sizes to accommodate whatever length utility table you use for tailgating. They offer a 34″ x 34″ square Tablevogue for card tables, 30″ x 72″ size to handle the most common tailgating table, the six footer and they also have a 30″ x 96″ Tablevogue to cover up those eight foot tables. All Tablevogues go “floor length” which on these standardized utility tables is 29 inches. For those tailgating, these go to “asphalt length”. The card table size is priced at $39.99 and the 6′ sized Tablevogue is priced at $49.99.

To see all the colors Tablevogue has to offer or to buy one of your own, visit: tablevogue.com. If you don’t find what you are looking for on their website you can email them at: [email protected] or call toll free at 1-888-41TABLE. For those of you social media types, you can also connect with Tablevogue on Facebook or Twitter.

Z-Bench Special Football Season Pricing Announced

Posted by Dave On August - 11 - 2009

Back in June we told you about the Z-Bench and how it serves four functions as a bench, table, step and a cargo hold for the bed of your pick-up truck. In an effort to “stimulate your tailgate”, pricing on the Z-Bench has been cut drastically.

For a limited time until the NFL season kicks off, you can buy your own Z-Bench for $349 and that price includes the shipping. Take a look at the Z-Bench video and see how many different ways you could use a Z-Bench.

Special pricing on the Z-Bench ends on Saturday, September 12, 2009. The vast majority of the NFL regular season football games kick-off on September 13th so make sure to get your Z-Bench before then.

Tailgating Gear Review: The Z-Bench

Posted by Dave On June - 25 - 2009

The Z-BenchAs a tailgater, you have probably seen tons of products designed to give you more space and functionality by utilizing the 2″ tow hitch on your truck or SUV. When it comes to tailgating accessories designed to make your tailgating experience better, most pick-up truck tailgates are left alone. That was the case for the longest time until I discovered the Z-Bench.

The Z-Bench is a lightweight yet sturdy aluminum bench that attaches to a pick-up truck tailgate. It unfolds off of your tailgate and provides seating for three adults. The Z-Bench can handle over 1,000 pounds and does not put any stress on the tailgate or suspension of your truck. All the weight you place on the Z-Bench is distributed on the sturdy legs that easily unfold when deployed. It is not only a bench but has other functions including a tailgate step, a picnic table and can also work as a cargo holder. The best part is when not in use, the Z-Bench folds up and takes up less than 3 1/2″ of space. Take a look at this video to see how you would use the Z-Bench while tailgating.

If you skipped the video and like to read, here are the four main features of the Z-Bench:

  • A Bench – Instead of using your unfolded tailgate for a seat, the Z-Bench allows you to sit comfortably with your feet on the ground and not dangling in the air. It accommodates three adults and can handle over 1,000 pounds. So go ahead and invite the left side of the offensive line to have a seat and enjoy some ribs.
  • A Step – The eleven inch deep bench makes entering your truck bed a whole lot easier and safer. Just grab the corner of the truck bed, step onto the bench and walk on up. The ribbed surface of the Z-Bench provides a safe, skid resistant surface for confident entering and exiting of your truck bed. You don’t have to jump or crawl out of your truck bed anymore. Just hold on to your bed rail and step up or down. When used as a step, the Z-Bench Makes loading and unloading of your tailgating gear much easier and faster too.
  • A Table – By sitting on the Z-Bench and facing your truck, your tailgate becomes a table. Table space is always at a premium while tailgating and by using your Z-Bench in this fashion you have now handled table space and seating for three people.
  • A Cargo Holder – Open the Z-Bench when the tailgate is closed and you have an excellent cargo holder. Perfect for holding propane tanks, coolers, generators, grills, etc. up against the tailgate. No more worrying if your tailgating supplies will roll around the bed of your truck on the way to game.

Take a look at a few photos of all the different ways you can use the Z-Bench whether you are tailgating or doing some other activity. (Click images for a larger, more detailed view.)


I personally tested out the Z-Bench and installed one on my friend’s Ford F-150 pick-up. I found it to be sturdy and convenient and when my friend drove home after the installation, he reported that there was no annoying rattling. He even drove home on a notoriously bumpy freeway with his radio off and listened for any hint of a rattle. He heard nothing and told me that he would have never known it was there based on the way his truck drove after the installation. I was also told that you can easily remove the Z-Bench from your tailgate by taking out the hinge link from the mounting plates. The Z-Bench comes off quickly and easily and when removed, the mounting brackets are out of the way and hardly even noticeable. There is also an option that you can use a small padlock instead of the hinge links for extra protection against theft.

The icing on the cake with the Z-Bench is that it installs in about 10 minutes. If you can use a measuring tape, drill a hold and turn a screw, you can install a Z-Bench. As we were installing the Z-Bench on the Ford F-150, we put together an instructional video that takes you step-by-step on installing one.

We’re confident that you’ll find the Z-Bench to be an invaluable tailgate accessory for your pick-up truck tailgate. That’s why we have chosen to offer them for sale on our online tailgating store, Shop.TailgatingIdeas.com. The Z-Bench normally retails for $399 with $50 flat rate shipping to the continental United States. In celebration of the upcoming football season, we are offering the Z-Bench from now through the September 12, 2010 for $349 with shipping included. (That saves you $100 for those that are math impaired.) Make sure to get your Z-Bench before the season starts for only $349 shipped.

If you purchase a Z-Bench via Shop.TailgatingIdeas.com, please send an email to David answering a few questions. These questions will help us send you the exact parts and pieces so that your new Z-Bench will fit your pick-up truck perfectly. Please include answers to the following questions:

  • Year, Make and Model of your truck?
  • Does your truck have a bed liner? If so, what kind of a bed liner; plastic drop-in or spray on?
  • Does your truck have a carpet kit?
  • Does your truck have a lift kit? If so, how many inches?
  • Does your truck have a Roll-Along kit?

Get A Tailgate PartyMate While The Price Is Still Low

Posted by Dave On May - 15 - 2009

If you haven’t seen the Tailgate Party Mate before, it is a unique tailgating table that attaches to your tow hitch. TailgatingIdeas.com was one of the first to discover this innovative piece of tailgating gear and offer it for sale. Now it appears the Tailgate PartyMate has caught the eye of major media and investors and is ready for the Big Time. Take a sneak peek at the new commercial that you should be seeing on TV coming soon.

Did you notice the new price of $299 + shipping mentioned at the end of the video? So did I.

The good news is that you can still get the Tailgate Party Mate from TailgatingIdeas.com at the introductory price of $249 + $20 flat rate shipping. That price is valid  from now until June 15, 2009.

If you have been on the fence on getting a Tailgate PartyMate, now is the time to buy. Plus you can get your own Tailgate Party Mate well before everyone else sees the commercial on TV and will want one of their own.





About Me

TailgatingIdeas.com is a tailgating blog dedicated to bringing you the latest and most intriguing tailgating ideas out there. Whether it is the latest tailgating gear reviews, a great new recipe or a funny list to make you smile, our goal is to inform and entertain the avid and the casual tailgater alike.

Started in August 2007 by tailgating enthusiast Dave Lamm, TailgatingIdeas.com has evolved into an advocate for tailgaters rights and is not afraid to touch on controversial issues confronting those who frequent the tailgating parking lots.

To learn more about TailgatingIdeas.com and our team of writers, reviewers, cartoonists and contributors, please visit the About Us page.