Extensive research shows that tailgating has been participant-tested and proven to lead the way to a better, more user-friendly world.
It is also a cure for upset stomach, runny noses, irritable bowl syndrome and dandruff.
Tailgating at Southeastern football games is several notches ahead of your average tailgating that takes place elsewhere.
Don’t take anybody’s word for this: Check it out for yourself Saturday at Southeastern’s first home football game.
Coach Ray Richards’ 1-0 Savage Storm play host to the Muleriders of Southern Arkansas in a 6 p.m. Great American Conference shootout at Paul Laird Field.
Mark Webb is president of the Southeastern Alumni Association and tailgating is his baby.
“There has always been limited tailgating at Southeastern games,” Webb said, “but we pushed it really hard last year. Tailgate Alley opens three hours before kickoff at all home games. Some folks even resume their tailgates after the games are over.”
There are only four home games for 2012 and Webb has already secured entertainment for all four.
Webb said, “Strongwood is a classic rock band from the area that played for us last year and is scheduled for two performances this year. Texoma favorite Rocky & the Bullwinkles will play at the other two games.”
Fans are encouraged to bring grills, lawn chairs, tents and anything that goes along with high-level pre-game tailgating. Don’t forget the appetite. It’s better not to eat anything after Thursday night in preparation for the main event.
Some prefer to eat without cooking and Sodexo, Southeastern’s food service, will have a grill and be selling food and drinks.
“We want to encourage folks to bring food and drink for their party, but the fun in tailgating is when you “compare recipes” with other tailgate camps,” Webb said.
Many folks last year showed up not to tailgate, but to get free food from those who were tailgating. The Blue and Gold Nation is a friendly bunch, so most requests were accommodated. This year, Sodexo will be available for the non-cooking crowd.
Gary Arnett (former SE Alumni Association president) and the Sig Taus always have a big tailgate with good support from fraternity alums and current members.
Unofficially (no records are kept), Southeastern’s Eddie Harbin is the king of the tailgaters. He put out some of the best BBQ last year with ribs so tender one almost had to eat them with a spoon. The Shamrock Bank grill is a regular at each home game and the pulled pork sliders were a big hit.
Webb said, “Everyone is welcome and space is free. Some choose to tailgate in the new parking lot at the corner of First and University. Most of the activity, however, will be on University between 2nd and 3rd streets.
“University will be blocked off there and tailgaters can use the grassy area on the south side of the street. If you have a grill on wheels, you can also park it on University Boulevard.
“No reservations are necessary, but space is available on a first-come, first-served basis. I sincerely hope that becomes a problem and we have to find more space.
“Tailgating shuts down about 20 minutes before kickoff with the Marching Savage Storm band appearing about that time in Tailgate Alley.
“Coach Richards then leads his team through the fans up on the sidewalk in a great new tradition called “The Walk.” That leads the team into the field house and sends fans into the stadium … you know what happens next.
“This is our first home game of 2012. The Storm went on the road and kicked the season into high gear with a big win at the University of Texas-Commerce.
“We encourage all Storm fans to join our tailgate party, enjoy great food and fellowship and help us make it 2-0 with a win over Southern Arkansas.”
All tailgaters and Storm fans are wanted for Saturday’s first home football game.
Experience not necessary.