Tailgate Survival Pack

Me sitting on a field of green on game day.

There’s excitement in the air, and that’s because it’s homecoming season. The fall feeling is in the air, and football season is in full swing. With that comes tailgate, and I am so excited to go.

All of the posts that I’ve seen on social media makes it look so fun, but I’m also trying not to die when it’s all said and done. Because I want to be prepared while carrying as little as possible, I’ve compiled a list of my essentials.

Minimize Your Wallet

There are stadiums that don’t allow big bags, so I try to bring as little as possible. Tailgate is a time when those phone cases that double as a wallet are very useful. I pick one photo ID and one credit card to bring with me.

Pro tip: Cash can go inside your shoes without causing too much discomfort. You’re probably making a disgusted face, but if you imagine all the places that dollar bill could’ve been…

My fanny pack and a cute pair of sunglasses.
I like a simple black fanny pack because it goes with every color.

Fanny packs are acceptable to bring out for tailgate, but I’ve never found them to be a necessity for me. I try to fit my phone and keys in my wallet, so it would probably be useful for me to make sure my outfit had pockets…

Cute and Comfortable Tailgate Attire

Like I said, most of what I’ve seen about tailgate is from movies and social media, so I definitely want an Instagram photo of me looking cute in a team jersey. However, because I live in the sweltering state of Florida, I have to be apt with what I choose to wear.

I am going to want shorts, because I don’t want my legs to get toasty in long pants or jeans. A long-sleeve shirt is also not an option, because I would drench it and myself in sweat. That means that it would be smart to choose shorts to go with my jersey, or a tank top if I don’t have one. No one wants to have a heat stroke outside.

Me in shorts and a school spirit sweatshirt outdoors.
Go Knights! I’ll charge on all day.

That brings me to my next point…

Outdoor Necessities

Being outside means plenty of sunshine, which means that you should remember to apply sunscreen every two hours. I have seen too many people the day after a football game red as a tomato from being burnt by the sun. I don’t want to go through that pain, and I’m too paranoid that I’m going to get skin cancer to forget about sunscreen.

Sneakers will be another necessity for this section. If you’re going to be on your feet all day, you’re going to want optimal support. You can bet that my feet are going to be comfortable in my shoes whether I’m trampling across a field or walking across a lot.

Optional outdoor items: a pair of sunglasses and a hat. I personally don’t like the tan left behind by sunglasses, or the hat hair that I get from sweating (pictured below). However, these things do give me the ability to handle the sun, which is why they are optional.

Here is my preferred sunscreen, along with a pair of comfortable shoes I like to wear.
Here is my preferred sunscreen, along with a pair of comfortable shoes I like to wear.

Not optional: This is probably said often enough that people hear it and forget they heard it, so I’m going to say this with high, high hopes. Hydrate yourself. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. The sunlight is beaming down on you and dehydrating you while you have fun. Your body will thank you for staying on top of your water intake by not passing out in the middle of the fun. Water is your best friend on tailgate days, so you don’t want to forget it.

Good Company

I believe that the people that take part in a memory have the ability to make or break it.

Honestly, the better your feelings toward a person, the more positive your experience will be. The people you want at tailgate with you are the people you feel comfortable kicking back with. You should be able to have fun with these people, but you should also trust them to take care of you if you go too far. You want to enjoy yourself, but you also want to be sure you don’t die afterwards.

Me at the first game of the season with my friend Gil. Excuse the hat hair.
Me at the first game of the season with my friend Gil. Excuse the hat hair. Note: Our school won this game 62-0.

Tailgating is something I’ve been talking about for so long, and I can’t wait to experience it for homecoming week.

Are you excited for tailgate season? Do you have a team you cheer for? What’s your favorite homecoming memory?

At the end of the day, if you go to tailgate, I hope you make some unforgettable memories and stay safe so you can tell the stories afterwards.

Love Always,

Kristi My

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