Football, friends, food, and beer – together, these four things almost guarantee a good time. So, it’s no wonder that hundreds of thousands of Americans tailgate all over the country every weekend during the fall and early winter. But, as with anything, if you’re going to do it, you should make sure you do it right. With that said, here are the five best cities to tailgate. If you can’t make it to one of these locations to celebrate our country’s favorite sport, at least take some notes and adjust your routine accordingly.
No. 5 – Los Angeles, California
L.A. might not be known as a football city and USC is suffering from the consequences of their recent string of NCAA violations. That doesn’t mean Trojans fans don’t still love their love their football team, and they definitely still know how to party. With some of the country’s most beautiful weather…and coeds, L.A. is easily one of the best spots to party before kickoff. As an added bonus, Pasadena is only 20 minutes away. It might not be within city limits, but it’s close enough to lump the Rose Bowl in here too. Who knew pigskin and palm trees could be such a good combo?
No. 4 -Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Even when the Eagles aren’t winning, their fans still show up passionate as ever. Passionately angry, but hey, it’s still passion. Rain, snow, sleet, horrible team…doesn’t matter; there’ll be a party outside of the stadium well before game time. Add in the prospect of the perfect cheese steak, and you can’t go wrong.
No. 3 – Gainesville, Florida
Chances are if you live in an SEC state, college football is probably pretty high up on the list of “things you live for”. That definitely translates over to the tailgate scenes outside of each of the conference’s stadiums, every single Saturday. Florida fans take their zeal for tailgating to a whole new level though. Ask any student, and they’ll tell you that party really starts after the first class ends on Friday. The fact that a good chunk of Gainesville picks up and goes to Jacksonville for “the world’s largest outdoor cocktail party” for a weekend in late October every year proves two things. Florida fans love their football, and they know how to tailgate.
No. 2 – Green Bay, Wisconsin
A small town in the middle Wisconsin might not seem like a likely contender for the country’s best tailgate spot, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Rooting for the Packers is one of the few things to do in Green Bay, and the locals embrace it every chance they get. It probably wouldn’t be crazy to say half the town shows up outside Lambeau to support their team every week. Beyond its love of the Pack, the state of Wisconsin is famous for three things: beer, sausage, and cheese. If that doesn’t sound like a solid foundation for a tailgate, what does?
No. 1 – Austin, Texas
If you live in Texas, there’s a 90% chance that you love football and barbecue more than life itself. Those two things also happen to be the two most important factors to a successful tailgating experience.
On football Saturdays, the entire town of Austin becomes one of America’s biggest parties. The fans bleed burnt orange, and I have on good authority that they teach proper grilling technique as a high school elective in Texas…Okay, that might not be true, but it might as well be. The perfect combination of good football, voracious fans, and great weather make Austin America’s number one tailgate spot. It doesn’t matter what team you root for, one Saturday of partying in Austin will be enough to have you yelling, “Hook ‘em”.