iStock_000026997887MediumAlthough you wouldn’t know it from the 90-degree weather we’re having this weekend, fall is just around the corner. In East Tennessee (as in many other areas of the country) that means one thing — it’s football time.
If you’re worried about missing the great fall weather because you’re inside watching the big game, consider moving the party outdoors. Here are a few tips to help make your next outdoor football party a success:

The Broadcast

The first thing you’ll need is a TV (I know, that’s obvious!). Although there are many options for outdoor-rated TVs, the luxury can come with a hefty price tag. For more affordable football-watching, consider purchasing a regular flat-screen TV. There are many wall-mount options that make it easy to attach the TV when you want to use it and take it down in inclement weather. When selecting a location for the TV, keep in mind that you’ll get some additional glare being outdoors. Find a shady spot, preferably under some protective covering such as a roof overhang or pergola.

The Best Seats in the House

WP_20140816_10_46_43_ProSeating is another important element to consider. Depending on how many people you’re entertaining, you’ll want space for a table or bar and chairs that would be conducive to eating tasty (and messy) tailgate foods from the grill. You can also add additional built-in space such as seat walls, steps or stadium seating so that you’re prepared for a crowd. We recently visited Norris Dam State Park and saw a great example of amphitheater or stadium seating. You can adapt that idea for your yard by creating levels of built in seating around your fire pit or other focal point. Check out this great example from Belgard.

The Half-Time Games

An often overlooked element when planning a party space is the lawn. Although plants around your patio are great for creating a cozy space, when you’re planning to entertain a crowd you’ll want to consider leaving some lawn to extend the space, both physically and visually. Lawns are also a perfect set up for tailgating games such as bag toss, or for a quick pick up game of football at halftime.

The Tailgating Food

Harmony_Bristol_Chicago_Brick_Oven_supplied_1The last thing to consider is food. You can’t watch football without tailgating food. Some popular choices for outdoor cooking include grills — freestanding or drop-in — and Big Green Eggs. Both of these are fantastic options but if you want the grand-daddy of outdoor cooking options, consider a wood-fired pizza oven. Chicago Brick Oven makes a great one that can be incorporated into a hardscape surround for a look that has some real wow-factor. Check out this demonstration video below:

If you need help creating the perfect space for your fall football parties, now is the perfect time to get started. Fill out our contact form to set up a free consultation or call me at 865-765-5550. You can also check out our Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter pages for other landscaping tips and inspiration.

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