It is Football time in Tennessee! We hear that phrase a lot around here because of the Tennessee Vols in our area. So if you are hosting the watch party for game day at your home, here are a few things to consider to prepare for game day.
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The big game is on and you have an entire house of people coming over to eat, drink, and watch their team win. Although your guests are going to bring a lot of stuff with them, as the host, you are going to have to have a lot more prepared just in case. With so many different personalities, you are going to have to have a little bit of everything, so here are a few tips as to what to prepare and have for Sunday Funday Football.
Plenty of Space to Watch the Game
The first thing you need to do is prepare the space where you are going to watch the game. If you are hosting because you have a TV screen that is large and everyone will have a good seat, get to organizing your room around the screen. First thing to look for is a glare or reflection in the screen so make sure blinds or curtains are closed to make the lighting of the room as optimal as possible. Nothing will get a die hard sports fan more upset than trying to see the game with an obstructed view.
Last weekend right before the big TN vs FL game, I could hear my neighbors in their outdoor pavilion struggling with how to set it their chairs so that everyone could see the screen. It was loud and a bit combative in that everyone had an opinion on where the chairs went and who got the best view. I am not sure who finally won the argument or the best chair locations.
It is a good idea to set up the chairs before guests arrive if possible.
A good suggestion is to set up the chairs, couch, and any other type of sitting apparatus up in a way that everyone will have a clear view of the screen. As people arrive, they can claim their spot and they can switch anything around if need be so that you can rest assured there is no bad seat in the house.
Have Arrival Snacks
People will show up hungry because they have been saving their appetites for the huge spread they know you’re going to have.
Quick and easy bites to prepare are anything that you can just pop in the oven and serve warm.
There are plenty of frozen foods like spanakopita that are light, healthy, and delicious that you can serve to your guests. You can also get old favorites like cocktail hot dogs, cheese puffs, and mac and cheese bites. Snacks like potato chips and pretzels are good to have out as well as corn chips with dips and guacamole. These are all easy to set out and prepare and they are good to hold over your guests until the real food is ready. These game day appetizers from Grits and Pinecones will help give you some ideas of what to prepare.
Provide Drinks and Storage
People are coming to drink, and since you are home, you can have a full bar for your guests. There are some obvious spirits that you must have like vodka, tequila, and bourbon. These three spirits will help you make a wide variety of drinks for your guests from old fashions to martinis to margaritas.
In my home it is more likely to be a wide choice of soft drinks, lemonade, and water.
If you want to have less to clean up and more to recycle, you can get pre-made cocktails in a can and keep them in the fridge or on ice. You can get hard seltzers in a variety of flavors that everyone can choose from, and you can get a wide variety of beers, some seasonal, that will give your guests the full experience.
A lot of your people are going to bring what they want to drink, so make sure that you have plenty of room in your fridge to keep everything cold, or get yourself a cooler that you can fill with ice so that everyone can use that ice for drinks or storing their beverages.
I don’t watch football or any sports really. So on game days I need to find a different source of entertainment.
Not everyone is showing up to watch the game. A lot of times, friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, and family members show up for the food, the atmosphere, and the drinks. This is definitely going to be the case, so if you can set up something for the non-sports watchers to do, that will make your party a huge success.
If you have another room where everyone can watch something else that would be key.
You can set aside some food and drinks for that room and the other group can have just as much fun. You can find a card game or other kind of game to play that is out of the way of those watching the game and this sets up an atmosphere where everyone is invited and included.
It also gets the non-sports watchers out of the room leaving the sports fans free from questions and being bothered. This also breaks things up for you as the host as you can go back and forth between rooms and keep yourself busy and feeling useful.
Thankfully I have a another living space in my home that I can watch something different during game days. But that is not an option for some. I have also lived in a home where the only TVs in the house were the living room and the bedroom. Well since you don’t really want to invite guests to lounge around your private spaces, then you need to find a different solution.
And outdoor patio is a great place to hang out for some great conversation. Or your front porch.
Conversation around a small breakfast table is a great solution as well.
Sometimes, though, you just need to leave the host house for the game and enjoy a movie with friends at another host house. Coffee shops and restaurants are also a great way to divide and conquer the different tastes in entertainment on game days.
However you decide to celebrate game day or not, I hope everyone enjoys the time spent with family and friends.