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What started out with a few sandwiches and a couple of beers before the game...has evolved into a great American sports tradition, among families, friends, and especially with the college football crowd and at top party schools.

A group of friends can drive to any outdoor setting, park their cars and pull down the tailgates - get out the grill and prepare a feast!

Hey, those stadium seats can be cold in winter, so what's a better way to warm up before the game? Before you decide to take your next party on the road, here are some tips for making your next tailgate party easy, fun, and affordable:

Tailgate party tips

tailgate party invitation ideaPrepare what you can the night before with some easy tailgate party recipes.

Consider one-pot make ahead dishes that not only travel well, but actually taste better the day after such as chili, taco fixings, Sloppy Joes, sausage & peppers, or even a pan of homemade lasagna.

If grilling's your specialty, remember -- safety first -- and when it comes to storing chicken, hamburger meat, hot dogs, and steaks be sure to keep everything in the cooler until it's time to fire up the barbecue. Also think about side dishes like quacamole, potato salad and cole slaw and keep those properly wrapped and stored until chow time.

And what's a tailgaiting party without the keg? Also be sure to have a couple of hot drinks ready in the thermos like hot chocolate for the kids, or hot mulled cider for the adults. Once you've donned the war paint in your favorite team colors, and decorated the car likewise with team banners -- you and the crew are ready to party!

Just in case, also check out this helpful tailgate party checklist to be sure you haven't forgotten any good stuff!

Whether you're a tailgating newbie -- or even if you're already an experienced stadium parking lot chef -- these sites have advice, recipes and tips than can make your next tailgate party the best one ever...

More about tailgate food & party ideas around the Web:

Tailgating Parties and Recipes - A motherlode of recipes from grilled steaks and burgers, to dessert squares, to enough mayonnaise and ketchup-laden salads to choke a quarterback.

tailgating recipes - Score big with tasty-sounding recipes for Kickin' Chicken Sandwiches, Touchdown Brownies, Tailgate Salad and lots more.

also see -> SUPER BOWL Party Ideas

Search for Football Party RecipesBrowse the recipe file

Suggested -> Buffalo Chicken Wings | Fried Chicken

Beer Batter Shrimp | Chunky Beef Crockpot | White Bean Chili w Chicken

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