For now college football tailgating expected to make a comeback at Mississippi State
Many people can't wait to pack the stadiums; while others are ready for the pregame
STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI)- Many people can’t wait to pack the stadiums; while others are ready for the pregame.
Before the first kickoff in front of a packed crowd takes place there will be people packing the grove in Oxford or the junction at Mississippi State. After a year of no tailgating at all, an area tailgating owner and restaurant have their fingers crossed that nothing will prevent them from giving people the best game-day experience.
Orders slowed down at the peak of COVID-19 last year at Slim Chickens in Starkville, but franchise owner David Bagwell said they already have an order for the first bulldog football game, and they’re setting their starting line-up for the home opener.
“We schedule everybody that we can get scheduled we really beef up on the game day because the catering comes in hot and heavy and we just really have to make a good plan for that,” said Bagwell.
Things weren’t just slow at Slim Chickens. Tailgating was nonexistent last year, forcing companies to close down all season. Brad Vickers, owner of Southern Tradition Tailgating, the wait had been even longer.
“We were completely shut down the whole year we have not set up on campus in 21 months. Some people look at that and say well you know coronavirus was only you know 2020, but the last tailgate that we did on campus was the egg bowl of 2019, ” said Vickers.
Vickers said business is booming now.
“We’re about at our max capacity we’ve got about 90 to 95 percent of our tents sold so I think there’s a lot of excitement and a lot of energy around.. people want to get out,” said Vickers.
Southern Tradition Tailgating is one of many vendors for Ole Miss and the only one for Mississippi State. Vickers said it takes a 35-40 man team to set up for each of the home games and his excitement for the first game has been building for a while now.
“For the last 21 months I have been coming out here, daily, and just like checking things, reorganizing things, creating new ways of how we can set up and take down in a more efficient manner,” said Vickers.
There are still a couple of spots open if anyone wants to set up through Southern Traditions for the bulldogs home opener on September 4, 2021.