RVs have everything one could want or need to enjoy pregame activities - a kitchen, bathroom, AC/Heat, power - so it's only natural that tailgating would expand to RVs.



How An RV Enhances Your Tailgate

The American Tailgating Tradition Should Be Done Right Or Not At All. That Means Gather The Crew, Your RV & Grill..For Starters

Winter tailgating in parking lot with RV [Photo Credit: Jim Kelly]

A History Lesson

There are many theories on how tailgating started.  Here is a stretch, but an interesting one:  In July of 1861, Washington D.C. had a buzz in the air with talk of the Civil War.  Many people did not know what battle looked like and, fueled by newspapers of the time, decided to go and see it in person. On the morning of the 21st of July, hundreds of people went to witness the Battle of Bull Run by carriage with picnic baskets to spectate the battle between the Union and Confederates.  This did happen. And can be related to what diehard sports fans do today, but perhaps a bit of a long shot from the modern day tailgating experience.

Most folks say that tailgating started on the backs of horse carriages in an 1869 football game between Rutgers and Princeton.  Others say that it started at Lambeau Field in 1919 when fans would bring their trucks and sit on their tailgate for seating, bringing food for nourishment.  As the years moved on, the technology and atmosphere around tailgating advanced dramatically and now includes a whole other event to the actual game that is being played.  

Fans grab some grub before the game [Photo Credit: US Army]
Lazydays' custom-wrapped Forest River Dynamax RV at a Bronco game [Photo Credit: Lazydays RV]

RV’s and Tailgating

It is only natural that tailgating would expand to RVs.  RVs have everything one could want or need to enjoy pregame activities - a kitchen, bathroom, AC/Heat, power, and so on.  "They have everything you need to have a great tailgating experience," explains Glover Howard, salesman at Lazydays RV in Denver, "Many have an outdoor kitchen where you can have everything you need right there."  Lazydays made a custom-wrap Forest River Dynamax RV that they take down to the Broncos games.  “We go have fun and hand out refreshments and cards and things,” Howard explains. 

A lot of things that make a tailgate party a great party are native to an RV.  Most importantly, there is power.  RVers can use their generator to power their big screen TVs, keep beverages cold in the kitchen and have a place for tailgaters to cool off or warm up.  “The models that have bunkbeds are really great for tailgating because it’s a lot of space for storage,” Howard explains.

Essential Products

Beyond the usual products like grills, meat, beer, and chairs and all the things native to an RV, such as TV and refrigerator, there are a few things that can make an RV tailgating experience even better.  For a generator, RV Tailgate Life, a website devoted to the hobby, recommends getting a GenTuri RV Generator Exhaust Venting System. The product moves the exhaust from the generator to above the RV, thereby making sure fans have a better time by not breathing in so much carbon monoxide.  Another essential is an RV flag pole so one can fly their favorite team.  Also, especially if the plan is to keep the party at the RV instead of go view the game from the stadium, getting an RV tailgating antenna can make sure the party lasts for the long haul.  All these things can ensure a great time for all those in attendance, and even the passerbys who get lured in. 

RV setup with games for the pregame festivities [Photo Credit: Lazydays RV]

Who Tailgates?

Tailgating happens most at football games, particularly college games.  There are unique traditions that RVers can participate in at a lot of these schools.  At Texas A&M in College Station, there is the Midnight Yell.  The night before each home game, at midnight, fans come out to practice their cheering.  There are generally about 20,000 people that come out.  Going to an Ohio State Buckeyes game, one can make Ohio State Buckeyes - a chocolate and peanut butter dessert that looks like a buckeye.  If one happens to be in Jacksonville for the UGA vs Florida, RVers can attend “The World’s Largest Cocktail Party” (a term coined by a sportswriter in the 1950s who went to the game and watched a drunk person give a drink to a uniformed police officer) where thousands of tailgaters come together and have fun before and during the game on neutral ground in Jacksonville. 

Whether one decides to go around the country seeing unique tailgating ideas and experiences at different colleges or simply support the local team, an RV is a great way to accommodate that party and show your fellow supporters that you mean business.

Andrew Malo

A graduate of Northeastern Illinois University in Education, Andrew has taught for the past decade in Chicago, New Mexico, and Japan.  He  enjoys tinkering with trucks and motorcycles, woodworking, reading and computer programming.  

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