Delegate the Tailgate

Well y’all it’s the middle of tailgate season, and I’ve got a few hacks to help you remain the hostess-with-the-mostess, without breaking a sweat. Now, given that it’s been hotter than hell here in Tennessee the entire month of September, you’re still probably going to sweat, but hopefully none of it’s stress-related. I can tell you that by sticking a very thin panty liner in the armpit of your shirt, you can avoid those dreaded pit-stains. That little extra tip is for free from me to you- ha!

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Back to the tailgate décor. Clearly paper products here are the way to go when hosting a football-watching party outdoors or indoors. Of course, people use regular dishware, but that’s not going to work for me when we have to shlep all of our items from our car to our tailgate spot, and though it’s not terribly far away, it’s best to use light-weight items, but I’m not willing to sacrifice looks for function. With everything us southern ladies have access to now when it comes to entertaining, one rarely has to do this. Hell, they even make crock-pots with cute designs on them now. So, I went with some of my favorite paper-products for the tabletop. The plates, forks and knives are all from a brand I LOVE called Sophistiplate. Their unusual plastic flatware looks just like some of the rental pieces we offer at Please Be Seated, which are uber-popular right now. They come in a variety of colors and have a modern edge to them which I love. The plates also come a in variety of colors and patterns and the flared edge is my favorite part. They are very durable so they can hold a large amount of food without flopping over.

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The cups are from one of my favorite local shops, You’re Invited, and they offer a wide selection of Styrofoam cups with various football-related designs. They of course have cups for specific teams, but I chose a team-neutral cup for this set-up with footballs on them.

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The tablecloth is a just a cheap plastic tablecloth from Target (always check the sizes on the package to make sure you get the right one), and I “jazzed” it up a bit with this darling paper table runner from Hester & Cook. I kept the décor on the table simple to keep things easy and cost-effective, so I clustered small glass vases with white hydrangeas and red berries from Trader Joes. All the flowers cost me about $20. Thankfully my son has a stash of various colored footballs for me to choose from, so I added a small red football to the center for extra pizzazz.

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Y’all probably know by now that I don’t like to cook or clean, so I called in my dear friend Vince, who owns the Nashville Soft Pretzel Company to come and help me with food. By help, I mean do everything. He made the most incredible “bratzels” for guests to eat, which are basically gourmet hot dogs (bratwursts) wrapped in homemade pretzels with sauerkraut stuffed inside. We added spicy mustard for dipping and mini pickles to the side and called it a day. You can of course add potato chips, dip or anything else you want, but the main dish is done with this one mess-free delicious hot-dog on steroids.

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For dessert, I called my gal at Summers Sweet Shop, and she made the cutest football-themed iced cookies. She too can customize your order to be team-specific or anything else you can think of. I always go to cookies for a party like a tailgate where a grab-and-go, mess-free dessert is always a win.

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That’s all for now… Go team!

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