Home » How to throw a Game Day Party for fans and non-fans!

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So, I have a confession to make. I’m not a football person. I know, I know.. Gasp, what wicked-words do I speak! No hate mail please, because I don’t hate it, it’s just that it’s not… hockey.

I’m not a total loss, though. For starters, I know the big game is coming. The big game is the one I like to watch. But even that game requires survival skills on my part. To survive a game, or even more so, a football-related party, I strictly adhere to the following rules:

  1. I never mistake the American version of football with football from every other part of the world. Football isn’t football. It’s football.
  2. Although I understand that each team has to get the ball to their side of the field to score a touchdown (and yes, I know what that is), I pretend to understand why they need to do this in 10-yard increments, and I nod over the whole switching directions at half- time.
  3. I know that the commercials are the best part and that half-time show is a close second.
  4. I don’t cheer when the referee comes out, despite the fact that I love an outfit with stripes. I know his appearance is never a good sign.
  5. I use phrases like “I know, right!” and “tell me about it” whenever someone tries to engage me in conversation about football, for fear I may confuse football with football.
  6. When cheering, I limit my outbursts to “YEAH!” to avoid cheering for the wrong team.
  7. If all else fails, I say, “More seven layer dip?” Good thing I always have some on hand.

I have friends that love football. I love my friends, despite their love, and, I live in a house of occasional football people that I love, too. They are almost equally divided into three camps – The Cowboys camp, the Green Bay camp, and the Seahawks camp. No surprise that we have a pretty excited third of our household these days! But, me? Long hair, don’t care too much. I don’t love it.

A Cowboys lover and my Superman

But, what I do love? A party. Even a game day party. That’s one thing we can all agree on. Sweets, spicy and savory junk food, fun and festivities? Oh, yeah. That I can get behind!
The best way to plan a party like this, especially an impromptu one, is to keep it simple. Simple decorating, simple menu, simple games… believe me, it’s enough for me to follow the game!

Decorating

My simple decorating started with this easy football table runner that I made last year. One of these days I’ll get around to adding yard lines..  I think it would be so cute that way! For now, it sets the mood nicely just as it is.

Tutorial

I use what I have. Over the years I’ve collected many, many of the galvanized tubs, buckets and hit up the Target dollar aisle for way more mini metal buckets than I can ever use. Truthfully, though, I use them for EVERYTHING.
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In this case, all that metal gave the food table a fun industrial look that had my husband not complaining that I was “girling up” football.. at least until I pulled out the mini serving forks.  A fun bunting, also from the Target dollar bins, gave the display a fun look without a lot of work. Add in a football, and you’re good to go!

Food

Our menu? A taco bar, featuring an assortment of Tex-Mex goodness. Rather than talking about it, let me show you!

Walking Tacos – a selection of corn, sun and tortilla chips. Fill your favorite fixings, and add a choice of:
Tex-Mex chicken  @ knockitoffcrafts ||
Smoky shredded pork @ Cooking Light ||
Chipotle Fish @ Cooking Light ||
Individual Five Layer Dip @ knockitoffcrafts
A choice of three salsas –
Pineapple salsa recipe @ skinny mom – I substituted mango for the pineapple||
Just like Chipotle’s Corn salsa @ howsweeteats ||
Lime-cilantro crema @ Cooking Light ||
Tomato Salsa (I use Jack’s Special Mild Salsa – Yum!) ||
The usual fixings – guacamole, shredded cheddar, Monterey jack, sour cream, chopped tomato, shredded lettuce, onion, bell, and hot peppers
Desserts
Empanadas @mycolumbianrecipes – I substituted half of a Werther’s soft caramel, added toasted coconut and nixed the marshmallow to make my somoa version

 

(Idiot Proof) Snickerdoodle Peanut Butter Chocolate Chex Mix Bars @ Half Baked Harvest ||

Drinks

For the adults, of course, there is the obvious – a good craft beer! We often include children in our parties, and therefore include a fun carbonated beverage as well.  For something more personal, punch, alcoholic or not, is my go-to beverage choice for a party of any kind. It’s cheap, easy to make and serve – can’t beat self-serve – and I love the idea of serving a signature drink or two that goes along with my theme. Here are a few ideas for a game day punch.

Touchdown punch @ thissillygirlslife ||
Red White and Blue Sangria @ knockitoffcrafts||
Fruit punch @ ||
Homemade Cherry Soda @ Southern Living.com

Games

At a game day party, there is often little need for additional entertainment for the adults, what with an abundance of good food, good drinks, and good conversation, but if you find a lull in the action, or, if you’re looking for ideas to keep the kids busy, I found some great resources and ideas!

Pin the football on the Goal Post @ crazyloucreations ||
Superbowl commercial bingo @ stylemepretty ||
Tailgate word search and printables @ forrent.com ||
Football trivia and mascot match @ momsandmunchkins.ca ||
Commercial rating signs @ studiodiy ||

Crafts

One of my favorite things to have a party is a craft idea for small fries. Kids know if they are visiting that I’ll have a craft put together for them!

Game Day Penants @ Sheknows.com ||
Your own personal player @ teachingheart.net ||
Paper football and goal post tutorial @ allfortheboys.com ||

Party Favor Ideas

Send your guests home a small token of your appreciation.

 

Football M&M bags @ chick-n-scrap

 

So, I’ve had enough football for the year. With all of this party fun, I’d almost forgotten I have a bathroom in shambles and owe you a big update on our progress! More on that soon!
23-34- Hut! Hut! (Is that even a valid call?)

Other parties you might be interested in:

 

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