When planning a tailgate party, Extension educators say people should plan to have a large enough vehicle to bring everything -- not only will food items be needed, but also things like lawn chairs, a portable grill and maybe a few games.
Decide how many people are coming and ask everyone to bring food and other items to the party. This makes the planner's job easier and allows everyone to feel like part of the party.
When selecting food items for people to bring remember to select foods that are either ready-to-eat or take only a short time to cook. Examples include:
When grilling, get to the parking lot early to set up. Start the charcoal so when people arrive, they can begin using the grill immediately.
Plastic totes are a great way to organize paper goods and miscellaneous items such as, napkins, paper plates, plastic silverware, paper towels, plastic cups, garbage bags, bottle openers, and leftover containers.
At the end of the party don't forget to clean up. Use plastic garbage bags for trash and repack food in coolers or discard if there isn't enough ice to keep it at a safe temperature.