At first glance, tailgating might seem like a perfect event: a laid-back outdoor party hosted in your Jeep. But there is a great deal of preparation that goes into it. You will need to make sure your Jeep is up to snuff and to make sure you bring everything you need to party for hours.
Jeeps are built for adventure. What better time to show off your ride than while Super Bowl tailgating? Get your family and friends together and enjoy all that your Jeep has to offer. Just remember to come prepared for a fun-filled day.
Your Super Bowl party is sure to impress if you follow this tailgate guide, whether you are tailgating at the Super Bowl host city or a local party. Below, you’ll learn how to prepare your Jeep for the tailgate party of the year.
Clean Up Your Jeep
You wouldn’t show up to a party with stained sweatpants, so don’t bring a dirty Jeep to a tailgate. Make sure you give that perfect first impression with a Jeep that’s fit for a show and shine.
Before scrubbing the exterior of your car, hose it down to remove any dirt, mud, and grime that could scratch the paint. Then, add a mild detergent to a bucket of water and scrub down your Jeep with a soft cloth. For added effectiveness, you might also add some baking soda to the soapy water to help get rid of salt and grime.
If you are washing a Jeep soft top, make sure you read our rundown of proper soft top care. Soft tops are difficult to clean so that they look new, but there are ways. We recommend regular cleaning with water and vinegar but you could also splurge for a specialized soft top cleaner like Bestop, which is the manufacturer of factory Jeep Wrangler soft tops. You can also use any auto shampoo designed for soft tops.
To dry, buff your Jeep with a microfiber cloth until it shines. You might also apply some wax or polish. Bring your A-game. After all, this is no regular-season game. This is the Super Bowl party.
Don’t write off the interior of your Jeep. If you want to impress your fellow ‘gaters, your Jeep should be spotless inside and out.
Dashboard and Center Console
To remove dust from your dashboard, you’ll want to clean it first with a rag and water on your first go. Wet a cloth and rub it all over the dashboard and center console.
If this area is too dirty for just water to be effective, try a mild detergent. You could also clean it with a product like Armor All wipes. Meguiar also makes a variety of high-quality cleaning products for that just-detailed look. Be careful not to apply anything with ammonia as that could dry out and crack your interior. After the dust and debris are gone, add a little polish to make the surfaces gleam.
Before getting to work on your seats, vacuum up all of the dirt and dust. Then apply the right cleaning solution for your particular seat material. The user manual should provide guidelines for your specific seat. As a precaution, you can also test your cleaning solution on a small section of the upholstery and check the results before using it all over. Use a lotion-based leather cleaner for leather or vinyl. Make sure you wipe away all the moisture with a microfiber cloth.
Accessorize Your Jeep Tailgate
Jeeps look awesome enough the way they are. But one of the joys of having a Jeep is all the ways they can be customized. Tailgating provides a unique opportunity to add mods to your Jeep for the ultimate party.
One of the Jeep’s potential additional features is a tailgate table. It provides the perfect place for storing coolers and grills. Most require that you bolt into location for installation, but the Mopar tailgate table offers a convenient space-saving option that tucks into the back door of your JL Wrangler. If standard tailgate tables cost more than you want to pay, you can always bring a folding table from home.
With a tailgate cover, you can get yourself more storage space for all your party essentials. Your grill tools will fit snugly in this tailgate cover from Smittybilt. Or you might invest in this tailgate basket/shelf for added versatility if you can’t decide between storage or a spare table. Whatever you choose, it will provide added Jeep tailgate protection.
Tailgate Rack and Brackets
Adding a tailgate rack and brackets will tell the world that you’re ready for an adventure. They allow you to carry extra gear for your tailgate, such as a grill or a cooler with beer and burgers. You can never have enough storage.
Bring the Comfort With You
If you want the party to last, make sure you and your company will be comfortable. With all those commercials, football games can be long.
When it’s time for the biggest game of the year, you have to be ready for any weather. A February day in New England will be freezing, but one in San Francisco could be warm. With weather often on the fritz, you never know if you’ll be exposed to rain or snow. So how does a Jeep party animal prepare?
If you’re lucky enough to attend a tailgate in Arizona for Superbowl 57, you’re going to need to keep cool. Temperatures there can reach into the 80s, so make sure your AC is working. With that in mind, you might also bring a portable fan and a generator to keep everyone comfortable. In addition, you’ll want to dress in your favorite short-sleeved NFL gear, even if your team didn’t make it to the big dance. You can also just rep clothing that celebrates your Jeep, which will never disappoint (unlike your football team).
On hot days, you certainly can’t let your drinks warm up. Pack your cooler with the drinks on the bottom, then a layer of ice, and food on the top. This will ensure plenty of frosty beverages!
If you’re not in the south, chances are you’ll be contending with the cold. Make sure your Jeep’s heat is working properly. You might also want to switch out your soft top for your hard top, if you haven’t already. And dress for the weather with your Jeep gear: JEDCo’s ultra-comfortable hooded sweatshirts are made with heathered fleece and feature the iconic Jeep grille. Or consider the oh-so-soft Jeep Sherpa Fleece Vest or these lounge-ready JEDCo Joggers.
But sometimes clothing only does so much. You might also consider a forced-air heater. Liquid propane tailgate heaters can heat your whole body as well as your hands after holding those cold drinks.
You’ll want to keep your food warm, too, so get some crock pots. You can hook up a generator or get a crock pot that specifically runs from your Jeep battery. Warm up some dips, chilis, and soups, and keep grilling those burgers and sausages.
Rain and Snow
Sometimes the weather does not cooperate. If there’s a downpour, you’ll want a poncho or rain jacket. For snow, get out that parka. A Jeep blanket might also come in handy. For added protection, consider investing in a canopy tent or Jeep awning for added shelter from the elements.
Other Items to Bring
To make the most of your tailgating experience, don’t forget some chairs. Thankfully, there are plenty of Jeep camping chairs to choose from.
Make sure to bring a camera or a smartphone with a good lens. If you’re at the big game, you might be lucky enough to get a photo with an NFL player. But you’ll at least want to capture all the awesome memories you’ll make partying with your friends.
Pick the Best Food and Drinks
Super Bowls last for hours, and that’s not including all the pre-game festivities too. You’ll need to be fueled up for fun to have a truly VIP tailgating experience. So, what should a party animal bring with them to turn their Jeep into a veritable food truck?
You’ll want to focus on a killer entree, so give yourself a break on sides, snacks, and desserts. Provide a range of flavors but keep those extras easy to prepare. For entrees, the New York Times recipe archive has a ton of intriguing options. We especially love this Slow Cooker Chili or these Italian Subs with Sausage and Peppers. Your friends will love them, too.
Keep your sides simple. Mix up your dips with a baked potato dip. Just add sour cream, cheese, scallions, and bacon. Dip your potato chips and enjoy comfort food in an easy-prep, easy-serve form.
Grilled veggies may be the only healthy food on your menu, but they pair well with barbeque dishes. Plus, they’ll give your stomach a welcome break from heavy dips, snacks, and beer.
For bite-sized snacks, consider the following:
- Jalapeno poppers
- Tater tot sliders
- Playoff meatballs
- Chocolate-covered pretzels
There are many cookies to keep your friends and family happy while you’re heating up the grill, including:
If you want something different, bring some fudge bars, mini strawberry cheesecakes, popcorn balls, or cookie dough bites. And if you want to pull out all the stops, make some crème brulee and finish it with your own portable hand torch.
Most tailgating involves quite a bit of drinking, so don’t forget a beverage package. To save time and hassle while Super Bowl tailgating, make the mixed drinks at home and pour them into mason jars. In addition to beer, try mixed drinks such as:
- Jungle Juice: the classic party drink
- Buffalo Bloody Mary: a tailgating twist on a favorite
- Andy’s Shandy: a beer mixture that adds flavor and a kick
Remember that everyone will need to rehydrate, so bring lots of water. Sodas, Gatorades, and juices can be used as alternatives to alcoholic beverages for underaged tailgaters or anyone who doesn’t want alcohol.
Food & Wine
Be sure to consider which wines will pair well with your food. Reds like Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah pair beautifully with cheeseburgers. If you plan to have chips and guacamole, try a semi-sweet Riesling or a crisp Sauvignon Blanc.
Create a Fun Space
Creating a VIP tailgating experience doesn’t have to start with the game. Energize your company from the beginning of the day through kickoff to the trophy ceremony with these party king hacks:
To play your favorite jams, bring a Bluetooth speaker, which packs a lot of sound in a little package. A curated playlist on Spotify or Apple Music will have you rocking through the festivities. If you choose your music right, you might not even need the halftime show.
You can also turn to TikTok. For the past two years, the NFL has paired up with TikTok to provide a special-edition show, NFL TikTok Tailgate. You can stream live music for an hour before kickoff with famous musical acts, TikTok creators, and NFL guests. Familiarize yourself with the performing band so that you can sing and dance along.
Food and music are important to your tailgating success but at a certain point, you will need to break out your tailgate games. Try out some of the following:
- Corn hole
- Kan jam
- Giant Jenga
- Beer pong
- Spike ball
No matter what happens to your favorite team, you can make the most of this annual pre-game party. Before Super Bowl tailgating, clean your Jeep, pack everything you need to be comfortable, make some amazing food and drinks, and have a plan for music and games. Take this year’s Super Bowl by storm and be a true party king. And if the game sucks, you can always just go off-roading.
Do you still have questions? Keep reading.
Is tailgating allowed at the Super Bowl?
Unfortunately, Super Bowl tailgating on stadium grounds has been banned for the general public. The event in Los Angeles for Superbowl 56 in 2022 was exclusively for ticket holders and was a catered event. However, you can get a group of fellow fans together to hold tailgate parties elsewhere and make your own fun.
How much does a Super Bowl ticket cost?
An average ticket for the title game costs between $4,000 to $5,000. Keep in mind that you and your company may also need to purchase parking passes for your parking space. Some parking lots provide free access, but they often have limited space.
In the unlikely event that there are security threats at these games, the police will provide a security briefing. Bear in mind that security checkpoints make it difficult to move people in and out of the stadium, and police may suggest public transportation if they shut down on-site parking.
When and where is the Super Bowl?
Super Bowl 57 is scheduled to be held at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, on February 12, 2023.
When is the Super Bowl tailgate party?
Typically, the Super Bowl tailgate party takes place in the parking lot of the host stadium the day of the big game. While tailgating is now almost banned for the general public at the host stadium, you can still find your fun tailgate party in a nearby lot or at a parking lot of your choosing.
What are some must-have Super Bowl snacks?
Football can be stressful. That’s why you need snacks. Snacking at a Super Bowl tailgate party is a must. Some of the go-to choices include nachos, chips and guacamole, Chex mix, meatballs, potato skins, and Buffalo chicken wings. To get your party started right, check out this comprehensive list of quality snacking grub from Serious Eats. Have fun, you Party King!