Tailgating Challenge

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Grateful Dead Tailgating Dallas TX

Posted by lukelorick on December 2, 2017 at 1:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Being the tailgating afficianado that I am, I love to check out a variety of different tailgating venues, outside of just football. Last night, I had the opportunity to attend the Grateful Dead show here in Dallas, TX at American Airlines center. I've never been to see THE DEAD before, but when offered the chance to go, of course I said yes. 

I pulled into the parking garage and there were some people here and there that were tailgating and drinking a few beers out the back of their vehicle, but really no tailgating gear, or big set ups in the garage. We met a few people that are all extremely chill and nice but, then it was time to explore the area to see what the Dead are up to. 

This was my first dead show, so I was set to learn quite a bit today. I learned the spot to head to was SHAKEDOWN. The Shakedown is where all the fans go to hang out before the show. The Shakedown is a large area that vendors and cars can park and have a big tailgate. The vendors were selling many food items. My favorite sign was the the grilled cheese vendor and from the sign it appears they use BACON in their melts: 

Everyone was decked out in their dead gear, which for most is brightly colored tie dye shirts. I even had one made for me in a polo style to be a little different (you know how I roll). In walking around the Shakedown one thing that was strange was there were NO BATHROOMS. We had to go across the street to CVS (shout out to CVS for letting everyone come over to use the bathroom). #HippiesUseSideDoor

In addition to the food vendors there were many shirts, posters and heck even cold beer being sold out of coolers. We came upon a full sized school bus that had the HIPPIE touch, shall we say. The owner was gracious enough to give me a tour and wow he spent some time and money on this thing. The funny part is he parks this in a VERY affluent neighborhood here in Dallas, TX. The neighbors love him, I'm sure!

I did a short walk around video to give you a perspective of what you can expect if you attend a Grateful Dead Shakedown: 

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It was then time to hit up the concert and see the Grateful Dead with John Mayer on the guitar! The Dead faithful showed up big time and almost packed out the arena. Beers were crazy expensive inside, to the tune of $24 for 2! People, this is why we tailgate before an event! An excellent show that lasted over 3 hours then transpired with Dead fans of all ages rocking the stadium. Literally, there were small kids, teenagers, young adults, and a more tenured bunch too. Throughout the show there were the Dead being the Dead and lighting up things that I don't believe were cigarettes LOL.

After the show we returned back to Shakedown to check out the after party and boy were they having a good time. The cool part about tailgating with the Dead is that everyone is happy. I didn't see one fight, argument or upset person. Unfortunately, when sports are involved that can't always be said. During the after party there were vendors placing a gas into balloons that people were going crazy for. I had never seen this before and learned that it was nitrous oxide or laughing gas (I did not sample one, but they were $5 bucks a balloon should you be around). It got even crazier as people came out with megaphones to announce they were selling 'special' brownies. This was shocking to me as we are in downtown Dallas, a place where these type of brownies are not yet legalized and they were announcing on a megaphone they were selling them (again I didn't buy one, but for those that are interested they were going for $10). 

It could be brownies, it could be the balloons or it could just be everyone there was just real chill, but I had a great time checking out the Grateful Dead and the Shakedown. I encourage YOU to try tailgating for more than just football games. This is Luke with Tailgating Challenge. Get out there and tailgate!

Texas AM Tailgating

Posted by lukelorick on October 2, 2017 at 10:40 PM Comments comments (2)

I was able to make it to College Station this past weekend to check out the tailgating scene at the South Carolina Gamecocks vs Texas AM football game. 

The kickoff to the game was at 6:30pm and I drove in from Dallas early that morning to get there around noon. I met up with some friends at a nearby hotel and we actually did some HotelGating for a couple of hours. No really, we set up camp in the Hawthorne parking lot and got down to tailgating!

I learned that while its called tailgating at Texas AM you can't actually have a tailgate around the stadium as you can't park and tailgate out of your vehicles, like I am used to. We took a LYFT from our HotelGating to the stadium to walk around and ensure we got the full game day experience at Texas AM. 

There are white tents all around the stadium where tailgaters can set up shop and enjoy some pre-game festivities. There was no shortage of tailgaters around, heck Texas AM boasts one of the largest stadiums in college football and the fans show up to have a big time before kickoff. 

Everyone is nervous when traveling to other stadiums that they may meet some aggressive, drunk or down right mean fans...That was not the case in College Station! The fans were awesome and there was not one fight, altercation, or really anything negative from anyone that we came across that day. 

While there, we did walk around the stadium multiple times (over 8 miles of touring tailgates on foot to be exact) and saw tons of tailgates and there was a great BBQ food truck in front of the stadium that had a bbq sandwich that was on point. 

With having no vehicles it made it challenging to take around some product samples and keep beers cold so we were outfitted with a few backpack coolers to make this easier and the Polar Bear Cooler backpack did a great job of keeping the beers cold!

Hours before game time there were fans all around the stadium...I see why they call them the 12th man!

You know you're deep in the heart of Texas when horses are a part of the tailgate. There were many horses ready to help patrol the tailgates as seen in our quick video when we stumbled across where they kept the horses in the tailgating scene:

https://youtu.be/ed9IuYUN8FA" target="_blank">https://youtu.be/ed9IuYUN8FA

As game time approached we ran into a small problem: what were we going to do with the backpacks? We didn't have a vehicle or anyone tailgating that we could leave them with, so we had to improvise! We found some bushes near the stadium and tucked them in the bushes hoping they would be there when we returned (also was hoping no one thought we were planting a BOMB!) 

From there we entered into the massive Kyle Field stadium to watch some SEC football on a Saturday night. Check out the inside of the stadium and the video on the team entrance!

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It was a tight game that Texas AM pulled out in the 4th quarter and the fans were LOUD! They also have a cannon that fires everytime the Aggies score that will literally shake you! Texas AM does not have female cheerleaders, but male Yell leaders that do an amazing job of getting the crowd going!

After the game was over we exited in the sea of people and were happy to find out backpacks still in the bushes. We hopped a LYFT to go back to the hotel and crashed after a long, fun filled day in College Station. 

Nice job Texas AM. You throw a fun tailgate! Only feedback.. let me bring my truck to tailgate:)

Special thanks to Blowfish for Hangovers and The Restroom Kit for providing samples that some lucky fans got to use. 

Hawaii Tailgating, Grilling and College Football

Posted by lukelorick on July 6, 2017 at 9:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Hawaii is the ultimate vacation destination, but to me there is so much more to Hawaii than just beautiful beaches and tropical drinks. When I go I'm coming with a tailgating perspective. I want to drink local beer, see how they grill and check out the college football stadium!

First off lets touch on the BEER.

Hawaii has some fine breweries that I had the pleasure of either visiting of finding the beers on the shelf at the grocery store, so I could try as many as possible...to be educate of course. My goal was to find the top 3 beers and then do a blind taste test to determine which one won my distinction as best Hawaiian beer. There were many great beers I tried from companies like Kona Brewing, Maui Brewing Company, the original brew "Primo" and much more. I always drink local beers when on vacation to get a true flavor for the city and culture that I'm in #DrinkLocal

I filtered it down to my top 3 (your individual results may vary)

Kona Brewing: Longboard Lager

Maui Brewing: Bikini Blonde My Winner!

Maui Brewing: Pineapple Mana

On to the the GRILL.

I went to a FUN restaurant on the island of Kauai that knew what time it was on the grill. They did a wood fired grill but they did it right beside the road. What better way to bring customers in?

It was fun to see, but I learned more about the wood they smoke with in Hawaii too, as it is different from where I live in Texas. They use Kiawe Wood that is native to that area (makes sense use the wood you got around you) it is similar to mesquite and gave the burger and tuna a nice smokey flavor. You can see the wood below: 

If you're ever out in Hawaii or see this wood for sale in your area give it a shot. 

Finally, Football!

Everytime I go to a place with a major college football team I always have to see the stadium and my trip to Hawaii was no different. I took the afternoon to check out the Aloha stadium, home of the Hawaiian Rainbow Warriors! When I arrived there were actually football games going on, so they let us in to see the stadium and get a few pics. 

Around the entrance to the stadium they had some palm trees to give it the Hawaiian feel. 

They were doing a swap meet when I arrived so the parking lot was filled like it was a game day. It was sunshining one moment then rained briefly. I was hoping for a rainbow, but no such luck on this trip. 

We hope to make it back for a tailgate in the future. University of Hawaii let me know if you're ready for a Tailgate Challenge!

Overall, Hawaii was a blast and there is so much more than just sitting on the beach with a tropical drink in your hand.

This is Luke with Tailgating Challenge Aloha and Mahalo!

South Carolina vs. Missouri Tailgate 11/5/16

Posted by lukelorick on November 7, 2016 at 7:40 PM Comments comments (2)

Fall tailgating in the South is about as good as it gets. The weather is beautiful and the football and tailgates are amazing. I traveled to Columbia, SC to check out how the Gamecock faithful tailgate at Williams Brice stadium. 

I haven't been to a game at South Carolina in over three years and one of the words I could use to describe how it was in years past was "industrial" as there were many warehouses and things around the stadium that never gave it the amazing game day feel you should get from an SEC stadium. 

Its obvious that South Carolina has spent MILLIONS to help beautify the tailgating area around the stadium and make it much greener as well. It looked amazing, but I'm getting ahead of myself. 

We set up our tailgate with some local South Carolina fans who had multiple tvs with the games going, a delicious food spread and obligatory USC tailgating tents (they were everywhere). Soon after getting into a few ice cold beverages the boiled peanut man pulling a wagon full of coolers came up to us. I love boiled peanuts, so of course we got some, but he asked if we needed anything else and proceeded to open a secret compartment in a cooler with mini bottles galore....thats my kind of peanut guy:)

After this interesting exchange we then had to go check out the tailgates around the stadium to see how the Gamecocks and the atmosphere compared. If you haven't heard the word 'Cockaboose' then its about time I got you up to speed. These are old railroad cars that are beside the stadium. They have been totally tricked out on the inside and have a rooftop patio on each one. Tell me it wouldn't be fun tailgating beside the stadium in one of these

As we walked around the stadium we saw the Gamecock mascot "Sir Big Spur" in his tailgating mobile. Check this thing out. This Gamecock knows how to get around:

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We later made it to the best place to grab a burger and drink at the stadium: Jacos. This is the claimed oldest bar in South Carolina and they serve a mean cheeseburger. If you're ever at a game in Columbia you have to stop by Jacos

As we continued around the tailgating spots we saw unique games, a cornhole trophy, grills with smokey aroma and even a CockaBoat. Thats right a tailgate boat and no there is not a lake or river by the stadium.

There was even the Fireball fire truck that showed up at the game. How great is a fireball shot, am I right? 

Watch a stroll through the Fair Grounds parking area to see tailgating at South Carolina up close and personal: 

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The game started and it was a great game with South Carolina pulling out the win over Mizzou. We hung around afterwards and saw the stadium from the ground level, saw the players got huge plates of chicken wings after the game (weird right, with Gamecocks being their mascot) and even seeing the Cockaboose up close and personal. 

Overall, South Carolina has come a long ways with their tailgating and they have some amazing fans. I'm not ready to call this the best tailgating in the nation, but if they keep improving on their tailgating like they have over the last three years watch out!

LSU vs Ole Miss Tailgating Trip

Posted by lukelorick on October 24, 2016 at 10:30 PM Comments comments (0)

I've been to a few tailgates in my day and know a  good tailgate from a GREAT tailgate. I had the chance to attend the LSU vs Ole Miss game on 10/22/16. I've heard that LSU fans tailgate better than any other school, so I had to verify the same. 

We arrived to the lots about 6 hours before a night kickoff and there were already THOUSANDS of tailgaters set up and having a great time. I first walked through what I'll call the RV village as there was row after row after row of high dollar RV's with tv's set up, grills a blazing and music pumping.  

We walked closer to the stadium to try to get our hands on some tickets and saw lot after lot of full parking with fans dressed in yellow and purple having a blast. We were able to get our hands on some lower deck tickets at face value and then could really begin to get into tailgating mode. 

I saw a couple walking their dogs and both dogs has 'LSU' shaved on both sides!


Even Donald Trump made an appearence;)

There were so many tailgating groups that were doing things that would make all of us proud I couldn't name them all, but this one picture sums up how they do their tailgating: 

Did I mention how beautiful the LSU campus was? There were massive oak trees throughout campus that gave it an awesome feel: 

We then entered a fun local bar "Barcadia" that had great prices on delicious drinks and plenty of TV's and music to keep us entertained. 

From there it was on to get a local bite to eat before kickoff. We found a great place called Roul's deli. I had the obligatory Tiger Burger that was a large hamburger loaded with cheese, beef, bacon and SHRIMP!

Afterwards it was off to the game. We started walking towards the game a little over an hour before kickoff and appears that everyone had the same idea. It was Insane. Think 100,000 people all converging to the stadium, frat guys holding bottles of vodka over their heads and giving anyone that came up and did the tiger chant a BIG shot of liquid fandom. It was great but likely intimidating for the few Ole Miss fans that attended the game (they didn't travel well)

We find our seats and get ready for action. There are fans filling up the stadiums and people pulling out flasks and filling their gameday drink up with a nice shot of Whiskey before the game starts. 

The LSU entrance to the game is pretty special. You can see for yourself with our video: 

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Overall, it was an awesome day and thoroughly enjoyed by all. I haven't been to all the college tailgate towns, but LSU will be hard to beat. 

Think your school can beat the LSU tailgating atmosphere? Let us know your school and why its the best....

South Carolina vs Liberty Tailgating recap

Posted by lukelorick on February 18, 2013 at 9:30 PM Comments comments (1)

Showed up for opening day for the South Carolina Gamecocks baseball team and of course had to get there a few hours before first pitch to enjoy the tailgating festivities.  It was a beautiful day for baseball with highs nearing 70 degrees and plenty of sunshine to go around.  The first pitch is at 3pm and we show up a little afternoon 12. There were already a sprinkling of other vehicles around when we pulled in.  Little did we know that this game was a sellout and tickets were going to be HARD to find for 6 people!  

We parked in an open field next to a China Buffett and a gas station. Parking in walking distance of a gas station is an obvious tailgating win, since you can get any drinks or snacks you may need throughout the day.  The gas station came in handy for some other fun, more on that later.  

We conclude the normal tailgating festivities and as 3pm approached figured we could walk up to the stadium and find some last minute tickets.  We were wrong! There were many people looking for tickets but very few selling them.  After determining that we would not be able to get 6 tickets we headed back to the tailgate and decided to roll our ticket money into buying some scratch off tickets.  This is where a gas station comes in handy yet again.  We send 2 of our tailgaters to the gas station with some funds to buy some lottery tickets with the intention that if we won we would all split it.  Well we got a handful of tickets and won a few dollars the first time, went back cashed those in for more, won a few dollars, went back for more, etc.  You can get the picture.  We did not win any large money on this day, most we won on a ticket was $7, but man it was fun to listen to the game, drink an adult beverage, and have the chance to win in it big all with your best friends.

All in all a fun and slightly different tailgating experience.  If you are ever in Columbia on opening day....get your tickets in advance and I don't mean lottery.

Until next time happy tailgating to all!!