15 People You’ll Meet Tailgating

15 People You’ll Meet Tailgating
Atlanta, GA, USA - December 6, 2014: Female University of Alabama fans dressed in crimson pose for a photo as they walk toward the Georgia Dome to watch the SEC Championship game against Missouri. (Photo by: BluIz60/iStockPhoto)

Tailgating is a sacred experience where you’ll meet fans of every stripe. Almost as important as the main event itself, tailgating has become a beloved American institution that allows people to loosen up before the game with a little grilling, drinking, and socializing. Tailgaters come from all walks of life and seem to eat, sleep, and breathe tailgating in their own very special ways. Next time you’re in the parking lot with your friends, see if you can spot these 15 tailgating fanatics.

1. The rival fan
This one’s perfectly happy receiving shade from everyone around.

2. The grill master
Might as well call it the Holy Grill. And ah, don’t touch it!

3. The proud alum
Keep your eyes peeled for people drenched in the logos of their alma mater and regaling anyone who will listen with stories of their glory days.

4. The person wearing a random costume
Who can argue against a super hero running around the parking lot? When it comes to tailgating, we say let your freak flag fly.

5. The amateur tailgater
There’s a first time and a first-timer for everything, so make these newbs feel welcome.

6. The organizer
These people usually like to pretend they’re stressed out by the tailgating logistics, but we all know they enjoy keeping us in line.

7. The gourmet chef
If only Yelp indexed tailgate master chefs.

Grilled fruit sangria? Yes please! Courtesy of the Homping Tailgating Grill. #tailgating #camping #sangria

A video posted by The Camping Authority (@50campfires) on

8. The diehard fan
You know them, you hate them, you love them. They may be a lot to handle, but there’s no denying their passion is admirable.

9. The local
These social butterflies add a welcome dose of local expertise and flavor to the mix.

Making friends #openingday #greencollar #letsgooakland #banjo #tailgating

A video posted by @hotrodhair on

10. The veteran
At this point, they could tailgate in their sleep. They basically have a beer koozie permanently glued to one hand. And they always get there early to snag the best spot.

Its starting #BigA#tailgating #BBQ #Puroparty.

A video posted by Chenzo (@cruzzer69) on

11. The vegan
The one who brings meatless hot dogs to the game. Don’t worry, it just means more all-beef franks for you.

12. The lost
Getting lost in the crowd can happen at any age — even grown-ups lose their way sometimes.

13. The freshmen
These freshies are, like, so stoked to be here right now.

14. The police
Keeping the rowdiest of us in check. Yes sir, officer sir.

15. The entertainer
Someone’s gotta appease the crowd before the big show or game.