Cool Tailgating Gear to Step Up Your Gametime Party

Cool Tailgating Gear to Step Up Your Gametime Party

By:

Dave Joachim

Tailgating is kind of like car camping. You need most of the same stuff–except maybe flashlights and sleeping bags. But if you’re planning to party into the night, bring those too! And that’s the biggest difference between tailgating and camping: tailgating is a party! For a full checklist of essential tailgating gear, click here. If you want to take your party up a notch, check out our picks for cool extras below, courtesy of our chief Fire Starter, Paul Sidoriak.

Aurosports black high powered binoculars

Compact and high-powered, these binoculars will easily fit in your jacket pocket and still leave room for tissues if you’re in the nosebleed seats. At less than 30 bucks, they’re great for zooming in on the quarterback, people watching, and scanning the stadium for friends.

Click here to buy the Aurosports 10×25 Folding High Powered Binoculars on Amazon

WZK Portable Wireless Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker black

You got the food, now just add music, and it’s a party! Perfect for average size tailgates, this portable outdoor wireless speaker syncs up with any mobile device so anyone can play their music. It’s waterproof so you don’t have to worry about passing rain showers or the occasional spilled beer from an enthusiastic tailgater.

Click here to buy the WZK Portable Wireless Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker on Amazon

Crown Shades 10x10 Pop Up Shelter white

A good sturdy pop up shelter may seem pricey, but spending little more than $100 can really take your tailgate to the next level. With a pop up shelter, you’re ready for any weather. This 10×10 unit sets up quickly so you can get on with the festivities. It doesn’t need staking, which is impossible on asphalt surfaces, and if wind is a factor, you can simply tie water jugs or sandbags to the legs. It comes with a convenient roller bag, and shades or additional shelters can be purchased separately to expand the possibilities of your party space.

Click here to buy the Crown Shades 10×10 Pop Up on Amazon

Chinet Classic White Fiber Plates with sandwiches on them

Flimsy paper plates can easily ruin a tailgate party. Who wants to spill chili all over their favorite gameday jersey? These eco-friendly plates from Chinet are cut and leak resistant and even microwavable. Plus 100-pack costs less than 10 bucks. You’ll have plenty to feed the whole crew.

Click here to buy the Chinet Classic White Fiber Plates on Amazon

Arctic Cove 18V Fan and Water Mister

Be cooler than your neighbors this season with a portable misting system. This setup sits on a 5 gallon water bucket and mists cool moisture into the air so you can stay cool during hot weather tailgates. Battery operated and portable, it mists for up two hours on a single charge. Or hook it up to a standard garden hose if you have access to one.

Click here to buy the Arctic Cove 18V Variable Speed Fan and Water Mister on Amazon

Tailgating Pros Cornhole Boards and bags

This regulation size cornhole (bag toss) game comes with a convenient carrying case, and you can choose from over 150 color designs for your personalized bags. You can even choose custom colors to match your favorite team’s color. The precision cut boards weigh about 15 lbs each, so they are sturdy and built to last but not too heavy to toss in the car.

Click here to buy the Tailgating Pros Cornhole Boards on Amazon

Bulzibucket game

Want to amp up your pregame activities? The Bulzibucket game is part skiball, part cornhole, part hacky sack, and all sorts of fun. Just throw the bag toward three tiers of landing areas to score points. This game is lightweight, portable, sets up in seconds, and sure to get you a line of tailgaters ready to take on the next winner.

Click here to buy the Bulzibucket game on Amazon

Chinet cut crystal stemless wineglasses

Keep it classy at your next tailgate by using disposable wine glasses. Of course, they’re perfect for beverages but also hold all kinds of desserts and salads.

Click here to buy Chinet Cut Crystal Stemless Wineglasses on Amazon

10 gallon galvanized steel trash can

If you are charcoal grilling, don’t forget to dump the hot coals out of the grill so they can cool safely while you watch the game. A small galvanized steel ash can is an easy way to prevent a dumpster fire, literally.

Click here to buy the Behrens 10 Gallon Galvanized Steel Trash Can on Amazon

Kidde Pro 210 fire extinguisher

Accidents sometimes happen when cooking outside. It’s always a good idea to keep a fire extinguisher on hand–even if it’s just to keep your neighbor’s overheated tailgate party from setting yours ablaze!

Click here to buy the Kidde Pro 210 Fire Extinguisher on Amazon

Tailgater's Cookbook cover

And if you really want to dig deep into tailgate history, trivia, planning, and more than 75 tried and true gameday recipes for both the grill and the cooler, pick up a copy of The Tailgater’s Cookbook by our own website editor, Dave Joachim. This book contains everything you need to cook up a great party in the parking lot and the Kindle version is only $3.50!

Click here to buy The Tailgater’s Cookbook on Amazon

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Published On: 7/1/2019 Last Modified: 3/12/2021


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These are not ads or paid placements. These are some of our favorite tools and toys.

These are products we have tested, won our top awards, and are highly recommend. Click here to read how we test, about our medals, and what they mean.

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Finally, A Great Portable Pellet Smoker


Green Mountain’s portable Davy Crockett Pellet Smoker is one mean tailgating and picnic machine. But it’s also gaining popularity with people who want to add a small, set it and forget it pellet smoker to their backyard arsenal. And with their WiFi capabilities you can control and monitor Davy Crocket from your smart phone or laptop.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order


Surely you know somebody who loves outdoor cooking who deserves a gift for the holidays, birthday, anniversary, or just for being wonderful. There he is, right in the mirror! Here are our selections of best ideas, all Platinum or Gold Medalists, listed by price.

Click here to see our list of Gold Medal Gifts

Bring The Heat With Broil King Signet’s Dual Tube Burners


The Broil King Signet 320 is a modestly priced, 3-burner gas grill that packs a lot of value and power under the hood. Broil King’s proprietary, dual-tube burners get hot fast and are able to achieve high, searing temps that rival most comparatively priced gas grills. The quality cast aluminum housing carries a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

Click here to read our complete review

Heat Resistant Gloves With Extra Long Sleeves Hold The Hot Stuff

If you’re using oven mitts at the grill, it’s time to trade up. Say hello to these suede welder’s gloves. They’re heat resistant enough to handle hot grill grates, and flexible enough to handle tongs. The extra long sleeves even let you reach deep into the firebox to move hot logs without getting burned. Our Fave.

Click here to read our detailed review

Click here to order from Amazon

The Cool Kettle With The Hinged Hood We Always Wanted


Napoleon’s NK22CK-C Charcoal Kettle Grill puts a few spins on the familiar kettle design. In fact, the hinged lid with a handle on the front, spins in a rotary motion 180 degrees. It’s hard to beat a Weber kettle, but Napoleon holds its own and adds some unique features to make the NK22CK-C a viable alternative.

Click here for more about what makes this grill special

GrillGrates Take Gas Grills To The Infrared Zone


GrillGrates(TM) amplify heat, prevent flareups, make flipping foods easier, kill hotspots, flip over to make a fine griddle, and can be easily moved from one grill to another. You can even throw wood chips, pellets, or sawdust between the rails and deliver a quick burst of smoke.

Click here for more about what makes these grates so special

Digital Thermometers Are Your Most Valuable Tool And Here’s A Great Buy!

A good digital thermometer keeps you from serving dry overcooked food or dangerously undercooked food. They are much faster and much more accurate than dial thermometers. YOU NEED ONE!
Click here to read our complete review