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10 Essentials for Tailgating Parties

Done right, tailgating can be just as fun, if not more fun, than the game itself. But tailgates require planning and an extensive packing list, and many tailgaters fail to bring key items that can push their party to elite status. Aside from your grill, spread of food and beverages and biodegradable trash bags, plates, cups and utensils, there’s a whole list of gear that is crucial to your tailgate, but often isn’t top of mind. Don’t worry — the EcoFlow Team is here to help! With these 10 tailgating essentials, even if your team doesn’t win the game, you’ll win the tailgate:

1. Coolers
What’s a tailgate without coolers? It’s important to bring multiple coolers to store alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages as well as separating pre-cooked and ready-to-eat foods from uncooked meats. Foodborne illness can strike from cross-contamination and keeping raw meat in its own cooler is essential. The Dometic CFX-35US is one of the best electric coolers on the market and can be powered with RIVER, and even comes an electronic thermostat with LED display, and AC and DC cords. Check out this link that has dozens of brilliant tailgating hacks, many of which involve coolers.

2. Make-and-take lawn games
Once the food and drinks are consumed, what better way to socialize and pass the time before kickoff than with do-it-yourself lawn games? Popular tailgating games include cornhole, bottle bowling, ring toss or horseshoes, lawn dominoes, and ladder golf. Look out for our upcoming blog post in a couple weeks highlighting the top 10 tailgating games and how to make and play them!

3. Small television
There are always good games on TV every college football Saturday or NFL Sunday, and a small TV is ideal for a tailgate because it’s portable, and will provide hours of entertainment for your guests! It will use about 100 watts of energy and RIVER will be able to power your small TV for about 4 whole hours! The TCL 32S305 32-inch 720p Roku Smart LED TV was rated the best small TV of 2018 by and is very affordable at only $150.

4. Laptop
Laptops can be used at a tailgate to stream games or movies, listen to the radio, play music, pull up how-to articles in case you forget how to do something like stuffing and cooking a sausage, and even play videos on YouTube or social media to hyped for the big game! You never know what last-minute information you might need at a tailgate party, and your laptop can easily be charged with RIVER. Apple just released the new MacBook Pro, which is arguably the highest-performing and most powerful laptop to date.

5. Portable bluetooth speakers and cables
Every superb tailgate party has a great vibe and atmosphere, and bluetooth speakers that play quality music are essential to enhance the experience of the tailgate party, and will stay charged with the EcoFlow RIVER. Make sure to create a playlist ahead of time with music that will appeal to everyone at the party and will get you pumped up for game-time. JBL just released an outstanding waterproof portable bluetooth speaker that is ideal for tailgating.

6. EcoFlow RIVER
And of course, you’ll need power! It’s all fun and games until the power runs out at your party. RIVER is the quiet, clean, portable generator replacement to power all of your game-day gadgets, like your TV, bluetooth speakers, everyone’s cell phones, electric coolers, radios, cameras, and more. Make your tailgate party the best in the parking lot!

7. Canopy or rain shelter
Canopies are great for protecting your crew and food from the harsh sun, which can be punishing in places like Arizona, Texas, Florida, and Southern California. You also don’t want to show up to the game with a bad sunburn because you didn’t have any pre-game shade protection. Likewise, rainstorms are no strangers to football games and other outdoor events and can make their presence known quickly and at any time, so it’s always best to stay safe and bring rain shelter. Bonus points if you bring a canopy or rain shelter with your team’s logo or colors. has canopies for nearly every major NCAA team and all 32 NFL teams.

8. Folding tables & chairs
Whether they’re for games of flip cup or keeping your food spread, plates, cups, and utensils easily accessible, tables are a must-have. It can be a long and exhausting process to set-up and cook food for a tailgate, so chairs are essential for giving yourself a much-needed rest after putting in all that hard work–not to mention providing your guests with a comfortable place to dig in. has nearly every NCAA and NFL team folding chairs so you can relax in a comfy chair while also repping your squad!

9. Sealable food containers & aluminum foil
Aluminum foil is versatile not just for cooking, but also for packaging extra food and equipment. Every experienced barbecuer knows to line the grill with aluminum foil so the meat doesn’t stick or even fall through to the bottom where the coals and ashes are. It’s extremely common for a tailgate chef to cook too much food, so store it for later with sealable containers stashed in coolers–or donate leftovers to your local homeless shelter!

10. Wet wipes & hand-wash station
Barbequed food is notorious for being messy and sticky, and wet wipes are great not only for cleaning your hands and face, but also for wiping down your tables and cooking equipment afterward. Cooks, servers, and people eating food should wash their hands frequently to prevent any foodborne illness, and tossing around a football, petting the dog, or picking up garbage will leave hands dirty as well. Once gametime approaches and it’s time to pack up everything, wet wipes will make the clean-up process painless and easy. Follow the link to find out what you’ll need for a portable hand-wash station. Hand-Wash Station

Tailgate parties are more than just events–for many sports fans, they’re a way of life, and an important way to build community, engender team loyalty, and create memories and traditions. Tailgates are great for socializing with family and friends, enjoying great food and beverages, and getting amped up to cheer on your team to victory. With these 10 essentials you will be set to have the tailgate season you have always envisioned. Just remember to be safe, drink in moderation and treat everyone around you (including opposing team fans) with respect and dignity. We at EcoFlow hope you have your best tailgating season yet. Clear eyes, full charge, can’t lose!

By Austin Hennen Vigil, Marketing Intern for EcoFlow