Eco-Friendly Tailgating

Fall and football are still in the air. This year even tailgaters are going green and I don’t mean the school colors. With more awareness of environmentalism, it’s good to remind everyone to leave no trace and do it green from start to finish.

At Clemson University, a team of civil engineering and architecture students designed a clever and sustainable tailgating trailer pulled by a bicycle that transforms into a kind of front porch with all the tailgating essentials. Many schools have great programs in place to tackle the thousands of pounds of trash that surround stadiums after a game. Communities are getting involved as well by volunteering to pick-up the trash. Lots of folks opt into carpooling, biking, riding buses or walking to reducing emissions and traffic congestion near the game.

Ways for hosts to create the ultimate green tailgate gathering include firing up a greener grill. Try Greenlink's All Natural Briquettes made from environmentally friendly wood sources and renewable plant wastes such as coconut husks. Use a good-quality charcoal chimney to get the fire started. Gas is an even better choice. Be sure your propane tank has a trade-in option to exchange the empty for a full tank. Use solar energy to power your party. Larger solar power portable outlets will work for MP3 players as well as portable heaters. Have a solar powered radio nearby for your media junkies. Be a locavore and buy local organic produce, ethically-raised chicken, beef, pork and lamb to support local farming.  Serve organic beers and wine. You even can make more sustainable choices of your chips. Buy all natural from a company that knows sustainability is good business like Kettle Brand Chips. Use compostable or recyclable plates, utensils and napkins. Don’t forget reusable packaging. Set up a simple recycling station with bins so guests can leave your tailgate area clean. And, don’t forget to pick up after yourself inside the stadium by bring a small recycling bag to drop into a bin after the game.

The tailgating environment is a social event – a time to cook, talk, share tailgate recipes, tell funny tailgate stories and eat the great tasting fare. Try some of these helpful hints and you’ll be well on your way to making your tailgate less of a green disaster. Think tailgating but approach it in a more sustainable way.

What can you add to this list? I’d love to hear about your green tailgates. And, please feel free to share these resources.  You can comment here on the site, or connect and converse with a great site on Facebook – “Like” at:

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