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When we moved into our new house in the summer, we were thrilled about finally have a large enough space to host friends and family for events like the Big Game. We have yet to host friends for a big occasion, so we would like to take the opportunity for the game! While we’ve hosted parties in the past, we haven’t had a chance to host one for a football game, so lately I’ve been thinking of and researching ways to make such an event easier and fun. I hope these inspire your own Big Game parties!
First-time homegating party tips:
Cater to both meat eaters and vegetarians. This is my biggest tip for any party. I have been to so many events where I have no vegetarian options to enjoy, so I try to always have something for everyone when I host. This is why I suggest heading to Jewel-Osco. The deli has game-day staples like a bucket of wings.
For vegetarians, I made a three-ingredient recipe for Coke Red-marinated BBQ meatballs. With veggie meatballs from Jewel-Osco’s frozen meatless section, a bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce and a Coke Red bottle, you can make a delicious entree that vegetarian and meat lovers will both enjoy.
To make the veggie meatballs, you need:
- Frozen veggie meatballs (I made 16.)
- 16 ounces of barbecue sauce.
- 8 ounces of Coke Red (Cola-Cola Classic).
Place all ingredients in a slow cooker for 30 minutes and enjoy! I made sliders with mine by cutting rolls in half.
You can’t go wrong with dips. Jewel-Osco’s deli also offers a delicious taco dip and buffalo chicken dip. The dips come in various sizes so you have enough no matter the size of your party. Other game-day favorites to consider: spinach-artichoke dip, guacamole and salsa, as well as queso. Don’t forget to pick up Jewel-Osco tortilla chips! All of these dips pair perfectly with Coca-Cola products.
Have a variety of drinks from the range of Coke products to cater to all tastes. I also choose the Coke Red (Coca-Cola Classic) along with options like Sprite and Coke Zero Sugar. Always have water available, too! I don’t mind serving beverages in my own glassware, but choose paper cups if you prefer. You don’t have to walk far because Coca-Cola products are also available in the deli in the 1.25L size. Other sizes are in the beverage aisle.
Set up activities for kids to make it family-friendly and pick easy-to-eat snacks. You can use a table for children to color or play games while adults watch football. If the budget allows you can also have a sitter to entertain kids so guests can enjoy the party worry-free.
Set up a bingo game to keep the game-watching interesting. You can either search for printable bingo cards online or create your own. You could also give out prizes!
Dress for the part. Go all out with your game-day gear. The local team may not be in the big game, but that doesn’t mean you can’t wear the colors or your favorite jersey! You can also paint your nails in team colors.
Set up a fondue/dessert station for a sweet treat to end the day. It doesn’t have to be fondue, of course, but it’s so easy! Treats can include marshallows, graham crackers, strawberries, brownie bites, apples, bananas, krispy treats, pretzels and waffers to dip into the chocolate. Otherwise provide your favorite desserts. This dessert bar can cheer up anyone disappointed by the game’s outcome.
What tips do you have for first-time homegating party hosts? Share them with me in the comments!
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Marette Flora is the founder of Floradise blog and personalized gift shop. Marette is a passionate storyteller and creator. She attended the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University and obtained a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication.
She is passionate about creating helpful and meaningful things.