Planning a Football Party

football, pennant, coolerScore a touchdown with family and friends by hosting a football party to cheer on your favorite college or pro team. These parties and tailgating are amongst the easiest to host because the entertainment is already provided! Many people routinely have parties for just about every game, others prefer to wait for a championship, bowl game, or the Super Bowl. Whatever your choice, these tips will help you organize and plan your best football party ever.

Being prepared is part of the game. First off, make sure you have a fine, working television and reception. Find out if you receive the channel that the game is being aired on and/or if youíre willing to pay the price if itís on pay-per-view. You may want to have an extra room and T.V. available for children and those who do not wish to watch the game. Board games and puzzles will also provide entertainment and keep the kids occupied while the adults are glued to the game.

Party Decorations

To get into the team spirit, decorate with memorabilia and collectibles. Your guests will enjoy viewing any pennants, jerseys, trading cards, football gear, and signed merchandise youíve collected over the years. If youíre just getting started, team colors and a football will suffice. You can look for decorations with a football theme at a local party supply store or online. Many of these stores sell cool football field tablecloths, napkins, plates, and football-shaped chip dishes for munchies that can be used over and over.

Food

Most people begin feeling a bit hungry around half time, which is the best time to serve up a quick meal. Crock pots will come in handy for cold-weather food such as chili or soup, baked beans, barbecue chicken or sloppy joes. If the weather is a bit warm, sandwiches and salads are quick and easy to serve. Since you probably donít want to miss much of the game, prepare as much of the food as you can in advance and consider asking your friends to bring a side dish or dessert. If your party is impromptu with little planning time, you can order take-out and ask everyone to pitch in. Just make sure that the food can be delivered unless someone is willing to miss part of the game and make a pizza run.

Whatís a football party without snacks? Ask your guests to arrive about a half-hour before kick-off so that everyone can get situated. Appetizers, nachos, chips, dip, a meat tray, and any kind of munchies can be available before and throughout the game for those who like to graze. Remember to be safe and keep the hot food hot and the cold food cold. Some foods will probably need to be stored in the refrigerator but try to keep out food that wonít spoil until the end of the game. 

Beverages

Football parties are usually very casual and itís okay to have adults B.Y.O.B. (bring your own beer or beverages.) Regardless of whether theyíre bringing their own drinks, you should have everything that they will need to feel right at home. Clean glasses, beer mugs, straws, and plenty of ice will help them mix their drinks. Always have extra beverages and beer on hand for those who come unprepared. Soda pop is versatile because kids love it and it can also be a mixer for adult drinks. Remember to be a responsible host and do not let anyone who over-indulges in alcohol to drive home. Either call a taxi or have a sober guest take them home. (They can always retrieve their vehicle the next day.)

If children will be attending your party, you can serve them punch, pop, fruit juice, or Kool-Aid. Keep in mind that they may be spilled so you may want to keep the drinks light in color to protect clothes and furniture. Lemonade, 7-up and Sprite are great alternatives. Itís a good idea to buy cups with lids and straws for younger kids and place napkins and paper towels strategically.

Games - Team Trivia

Of course, the football game is the main event but you can but you can liven up your party with a little football trivia between commercials. Do some research online and find out later on which guest knows the most about your teamís history. Interesting questions include those about bowl games, mascots, coaches, players, and records. Need more ideas? Consider other games such as charades that you can easily transform with a football theme.

Last but not leastÖ Football parties can get quite loud and boisterous, so record the game to capture moments you may miss. This could end up being a historic or record-breaking game, or one with controversial calls by the referees. Win or lose, thereís always someone who will wish to review the game.