Autumn is noted for the color and delight found in the changing of the seasons! But change also arrives in the form of the colorful masses that gather and celebrate…..around football stadiums. It happens around high school games on Friday nights and on crisp cool Saturdays around colleges and universities. It happens on Sunday afternoons, Sunday Nights, Monday Nights and all the other times that they squeeze in days and times for professional football. From amateur to professional contests, upwards of 50 million people annually enjoy tailgating.

Tailgating refers to the custom of arriving to games many hours before the scheduled event's beginning, lowering vehicle tailgates and enjoying food, drinks and recreational activities! Tailgating began simply enough with socializing among folks who came to game locations early enough to secure scarce parking. The socialization was enhanced by food and drinks, then the events became more elaborate involving bring your own pitch-ins, barbecues, concerts, recreational sports, etc.

• Sadly, most activities that involve large crowds are too frequently accompanied by various dangers. Of course, it makes sense to reduce the chance of injury or loss by taking precautions such as the following:
Avoid using breakable containers for beverages or for any food service items. Dropping items is unavoidable and glass shards can cause serious injuries during a time where getting quick medical assistance can be difficult
• Carry a well-stocked, comprehensive first aid kit, especially to handle burns, dehydration, sunburns, cuts and bruises
• Restrict games and activities to larger, clear areas that minimize the chance of injury to non-participants
• If games or activities are near high-traffic areas, use spotters, persons situated to warn those passing by such areas.
• Be very careful with cooking areas, never leave them unattended, keep them away from pedestrians (especially children) and be sure to have safety gear, such as fire extinguishers
• Keep an eye out for thieves who often target unlocked vehicles for valuables

It is also very important to make sure that you are properly insured to handle possible damage or loss of your property. It is far more important to carry insurance coverage to protect you for injury or loss you may cause to others. Tailgating can be enormous fun, but with great fun comes great responsibility. Protect yourself and others.

Be safe, have fun, and go out and cheer on your favorite team!

Source: ©The Rough Notes Company, Inc.

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