This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.com.
For sports loving families there is no better way to spend the weekend than watching sports together. While most games are spent home around the television it’s fun to get out and actually go to a game to enjoy the fun in person. Today I wanted to share some essentials for parents who want to take their kids tailgating with them.
Living in Chicago means we never know what to expect during football season. It can be a warm day or it can be downright frigid like the last Bears game I went to. Because of this it’s important to check the weather and make sure you pack whatever weather appropriate gear you need from blankets and hand-warmers to ponchos to sun screen and hand-held fans. I’ve learned that anytime we have outdoor activities, if the children are either too hot or too cold, they won’t enjoy the day no matter what we are doing.
Simple football decor
I tend to go all out when I decorate for football season but when you are tailgating you’ll want to keep it simple. A disposable football themed tablecloth and tableware are perfect. You can even add a banner if you want to decorate your tailgate.
Grab and go meals
When you watch football games at home you can grill or slow cook your meal but when you are tailgating you want meals that are easy to grab on the way to the game. One of my favorite sandwich shops, Jersey Mike’s, makes it easy to order online and then pick up a catering box full of sandwiches everyone in the family will love. Even my little picky eater, Lucas, loves Jersey Mike’s sandwiches!
We ordered a catering box with four different sandwiches. We got my favorite sandwich, the Original Italian – a Jersey-style Italian sub full of provolone, ham, prosciuttini, cappacuolo, salami, and pepperoni- on their amazing Rosemary Parmesan Bread. We kept it simple for the kids with a Stickball Special sub, made with provolone, ham, and salami. And then of course we also got the Club Sub and Club Supreme because… BACON. We ordered all the subs with lettuce and then had them put all of the other ingredients on the side so that the sandwiches didn’t get soggy in transit. Plus, with the toppings on the side, everyone can customize the sandwiches how they want to which is perfect for groups. Add cookies and single bags of chips to your order and you have a simple tailgating meal you didn’t have to make… can’t get easier than that! (Learn more about Jersey Mike’s Catering here.)
Games and things to keep the kids busy
Football Sundays can be long and if the kids aren’t into football they may become bored pretty quick. Fun games like bean bags or even bringing a football to toss around can keep them occupied while everyone else is chatting and enjoying their pre-game rituals.
Cooler with cold drinks or a thermos with something hot on cold days
Don’t forget to bring the drinks to go along with those delicious sandwiches! There’s nothing better than a cold drink on a hot day (stock up on that water!) but on chilly days something warm in a thermos may be preferred.
Spiritwear and FanHeads Football Helmets
I’m in my Chicago Bears gear often, whether it’s football season or not, but for live games you’ll want to go over the top and I discovered a new must-have for fans to show their team spirit- FanHeads football helmets! Specially made from a strong and foldable laminate material, these helmets are perfect for wearing and display. They are also weather resistant, lightweight, and comfortable. My favorite feature of these helmets though is that they can be adjusted to four sizes so both kids and adults can wear them. (Learn more and order your FanHeads fan gear here.)
Folding chairs and tables
You’ll want a place to sit while you tailgate so don’t forget to put folding chairs (or camping chairs) in your trunk before you leave home. A folding table is also a nice addition so you’ll have a place to serve food from.
Portable phone charger
Whether you are playing music from your phone or checking your fantasy football player’s stats you’ll likely be draining your phone battery so you’ll want to bring a portable phone charger. This is especially important if your game tickets are on your phone because the last thing you want to do is miss the game because you can’t access your mobile tickets.