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Themes for Parties

The best tailgating themes for parties held before and after a football game or any other sporting event naturally involve the favorite team. Next to the mutual admiration of a team connecting all those participating in a tailgate party, the food is the next best thing, followed by games and entertainment activities.

Sports-Oriented Items for Tailgate Parties


Visit any professional sports teams' website and you will find many items, novelties and clothing with the team's logo imprinted on them that help make tailgate parties fun and festive, such as:

  • Napkins
  • Foil or rubber balloons
  • Temporary tattoos
  • Paper dinner plates
  • Sheet cake or cupcake decorations
  • Tumblers and can holders
  • Tailgate party tape to wrap around your vehicle
  • Soft footballs
  • T-shirts, hats and headbands

Themes for parties based around the team's hometown reputation regarding food, weather and music would make for an appealing tailgate celebration. For example, a party held before a New Orleans Saints football game could have Cajun food, jazz music and Mardi Gras beads or masks. Jambalaya is a favorite food of southern Louisiana residents and few can resist a big plate of this spicy chicken and rice dish along with a glass of watermelon punch:

Jambalaya Recipe

  • Sauté two pounds of Italian sausage in large frying pan
  • Add 1/2 cup of chopped onion, celery and bell peppers to sausage
  • Brown the mixture and remove grease
  • Season with garlic powder and then add one can of stewed tomatoes
  • Pour in two cups of chicken broth, enough to cover sausage mixture
  • Simmer for five minutes while covered
  • Finally, add two to four cups of white or brown rice and simmer until rice is tender

Watermelon Punch

In a large mixing bowl, scoop out the flesh of a 15 pound watermelon and remove watermelon seeds. Add two pints of strawberries and three cans of the six-ounce frozen lemonade to the watermelon and mix with hand mixer. Use the empty watermelon rind as your tailgate party punchbowl!


Other themes for parties could involve a lazy, tropical ambience, such as when hosting a tailgate party for the Miami Dolphins. Decorations like a bamboo torch for card tables, fish net hanging around your vehicle or creating a grass table skirt from strips of green tissue or crepe paper.

While waiting for the Miami Dolphins game or engaging in post-game celebrations, you and your friends could eat fresh shrimp flavored with this shrimp dip:

  • 4 ounces of tiny shrimp
  • 8 ounces of cream cheese
  • 1 can of cream of shrimp soup
  • 1 pinch of garlic salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of lemon juice

Beat all ingredients together in one large bowl and refrigerate overnight.

Enjoying a tailgate party on a warm Miami night based on these themes for parties also means drinking fruity, cold rum beverages:

  • 1/2 ounce of light rum
  • 1/2 ounce of dark rum
  • 1/2 of coconut liqueur
  • Orange and pineapple juice

Mix liqueur and rum in a shaker half-filled with ice. Shake for a few seconds then pour into a glass of crushed ice. Add half orange/half pineapple juice to fill the glass full. Garnish with a little umbrella.

Other themes for parties involving tailgating include a picnic theme in which blankets would be laid on the parking lot, picnic baskets contained food and everybody could play picnic games like checkers or sports trivia.

Another one could be a Mexican theme involving fixings for tacos, sombrero wearing and everybody competing in a Mexican hat dance.

If the weather permits it, you might have a slumber party themed tailgating party for night games where everyone is instructed to don pajama wear, bring pillows and blankets and tell their favorite ghost story.

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