By Shontel Cargill (BS ’10), secretary of the UGA Black Alumni Leadership Council, and David White (ABJ ’10), member of the UGA Black Alumni Leadership Council.
Tailgating looks different this year. We’re not on campus, we’re social distancing from many friends and family members and honestly, we’re just grateful to have a football season. Still, Bulldogs have never been ones to give up—especially when it comes to spending time with fellow alumni and fans. With Homecoming approaching, it’s time to once again rally our enduring spirit of camaraderie and pride. And there’s one event that is sure to do this …
All Bulldogs are invited to UGA’s annual Black Alumni Homecoming Tailgate. This year, we’re taking the reunion virtual. If you haven’t registered yet, it’s not too late. Be sure to order an official Homecoming box (you can always use it for future games if it doesn’t arrive in time) and tune in to our pregame show at 4:30 p.m. on Nov. 21.
No matter who you’re with or how you’re celebrating Homecoming this year, you can still plan a winning tailgate with these top ten tips:
- Never Bark Alone, but get that mask on!
You want everyone to have a fun and safe time at your tailgate despite the pandemic. So, make sure to limit the number of guests you invite and have your favorite Bulldog masks handy (check these out from the UGA Bookstore—which also support UGA students!). If you’re not eating or drinking, keep that mask on! Alternatively, you can host a virtual tailgate to cheer on the Dawgs with friends all over the country.
- Make a grocery list and plan ahead.
You can’t wait until Saturday morning to start planning—and don’t forget the essentials: food, beverages, water, plates, and don’t forget the ‘Ice, Ice, Baby!’ Now, it’s a lot more complicated than just “food” so be sure you …
- Create a menu.
Expert tailgaters know that the food can make or break a tailgate. Put in the work on Pinterest ahead of time to create a menu that tastes good and can be enjoyed throughout the game. And remember your vegetarian/vegan friends and others with dietary restrictions. Share your menu on social media and tag us @ugaalumni ahead of the game.
- Prep food in advance.
Make sure your food is well-seasoned! Consider marinating your meats (or jackfruit, tofu, etc.) the night before. And hey—go ahead and set up as much as possible on Friday night.
- Remember the coolers.
Some Bulldogs focus on the food and drink, but completely forget one essential item: ice! That little cooler that holds three drinks is not going to cut it if you’re hosting 2+ people. Consider ordering a larger one from the UGA Bookstore or your local sporting goods store ahead of time.
- Hydrate and hydrate some more!
You can never have too much water. Fill one of your coolers with bottles of water and leave some out for the end of the game. If a guest hasn’t had a sip of water by the second quarter, you might need to throw a flag and call for a water break.
- A sensational setup!
Ensure that your TV and speakers are setup for a front-row experience. Provide comfortable seating options with a good view of the game for each guest. Don’t forget the decorations and your best Georgia gear. Bonus points for setting up games like cornhole to enjoy before kickoff and during halftime.
- The perfect pregame playlist!
Make sure to swag when you surf, tote that Georgia-Florida Line and get ready to Hail to Georgia before kickoff. You are welcome to listen to the playlist we created just for this occasion. Maybe even assign someone the role of drum major—it’s their job to queue up Krypton Fanfare at the beginning of the fourth quarter.
- Don’t forget to show off your hard work! #UGAHomecoming
If we didn’t see it on social, did it happen? Share your tailgating talents on social media with #UGAHomecoming and tag @ugaalumni!
- Bring your best Bulldog touchdown celebrations!
What is a Bulldog tailgate without celebrations? We expect Bulldog fans of all ages to come ready with a touchdown dance. Need an easy one? Just channel your inner Sony Michel. 🤗
We wish you a happy Homecoming and hope to see you for the virtual Black Alumni Homecoming Tailgate on Nov. 21. As always, Go Dawgs!