Saturday is National Tailgating Day in America, just in time for the 2016 football season! The holiday of sorts, which celebrates the time-honored custom of gathering outside a stadium before the big game to drink, eat and celebrate with fellow sports fans falls smack dab in the middle of the first weekend of college football this year -- some of the first games of the NCAA football season kick off Friday. While tailgating is not exclusive to any one sport, no fans tailgate like football fans and college football fans take things to another level. Ole Miss, the nickname for the University of Mississippi, is the crown jewel of tailgating. Centered on "The Grove," a ten-acre lawn lined with oak, elm, and magnolia trees, Ole Miss fans dress up for games like they are headed to fancy dinner party.
Robert Sosa has been going to soccer games at the StubHub Center since it opened in 2003, and he has some advice for fans who will be going there to watch the Chargers. "Get here early," he said before a recent Galaxy game. Sosa typically arrives as many as five hours before kickoff to scout out tailgating spots in the northwest parking lot.
One by one, Fred Easter ushered a steady stream of cars festooned with gold and blue Los Angeles Rams flags into a lot behind a two-story apartment duplex just a half-mile walk from the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. For the fans heading to the team's first home game of the season, the price he was charging to park was a steal: 50. Along nearby Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Vermont Avenue, parking lot operators Sunday were asking up to 180 for a single parking spot that didn't even allow tailgating. Online, the prices were even higher. One parking pass a short walk from the stadium was going for 1,000 on StubHub.
There's only one reason waking up early on weekends is acceptable, and it's to load a bunch of beer and meat into a car, drive to a giant parking lot and stand outside for hours on end in all kinds of weather before watching 22 people fight over an 11-inch piece of pigskin. And that's why tailgating season -- and football season as a whole -- is the best part of the year. Whether you've been tailgating before stadiums had video boards or you're going to your first big game this year, you need to make sure you're doing it right--and that's where we come in. Here is your ultimate tailgating guide with the tools, the tastes and the tips to make the next five months of football fantastic. We broke it down into five different parts to cover it all: -Our top-rated tailgate gear -Amazon's top items -Gridiron grub -Grilling how-tos -Tips and tricks To throw the perfect tailgate, you need the right equipment, from grills and accessories to coolers, coozies and cornhole.