Photo by Scott Paulus/Milwaukee Brewers
Hold onto your hats, baseball fans! Baseball season has begun! And if you're anything like us, your mind is on tailgating! So as you dust off the last football season's folding chairs, the beer pong table, and tent (unless you've been using them to tailgate at a NASCAR race or two this season—and if you have, tip of the 'ol hat to you!), take a minute to review our quick guide on the do's and don't of tailgating, MLB-style.
DO'S & DON'TS
1. DO: Arrive early. The easiest way to snag the best spots for tailgating (or your usual spot) is to get their early and squat til your peeps arrive.
2. DO: Have your tickets ready. Many (if not most) stadiums require you to show your tickets to access the ballpark's parking lots. Save yourself and the people behind you in line some time and have those puppies out and ready to flash at the parking lot attendant.
3. DO: Bring sunscreen. Spring is upon us, folks! And hopefully this weekend will bring some great weather. While you're out soaking up rays and fulfilling your Vitamin D quota, don't forget your skin! The spring sun can still burn you. Lather up before you head out (40 minutes in advance) and pack the sunscreen to reapply every couple hours.
4. DO: Bring cash money. You aren't rollin' into the club, but you are rollin' into the parking lot and that costs money. Cash money. Most parking attendants/booths don't take plastic. Save that for inside the ballpark. Use your cash to nab a parking spot.
5. DO: Bring trash bags. Most ballpark parking lots have trash bins scattered throughout. Nonetheless, save some time schlepping back and forth and just bag all your trash in one or two bags before dumping it at the designated trash collection sites.
6. DO: Bring your grill. Nothing says tailgating like a good ol' grill, my friends. And nothing says game day like BBQ'd food. Mmm! Head up: most ballparks only allow charcoal or gas grills, though. Don't try to build a bonfire or other open flame. That probably won't go over too well. Do check ahead of time (try Googling your ballpark) if you have any questions before heading out there.
7. DO: Bring chairs, tables, canopies and other tailgating accessories. If you're anything like me, standing for hours hurts. And standing the sun for hours hurts more. I like to bring plastic folding chairs and tables to use as a buffet. And I like to house it all under a tent or canopy. You do you, but just a suggestion…it certainly makes tailgating more pleasant.
8. DO: Bring games! Cornhole, ladder ball, washers, flip cup/beer pong. It's all in good fun and will keep everyone engaged and in high spirits!
9. DON'T: Bring banned items. Again, check your ballpark's guidelines but most prohibit things like fireworks, deep fryers, weapons of any kind, your own porta-potties, etc. Also, drunken, rowdy behavior's usually a one-way ticket outta there. Have fun but don't go dangerous nuts!