Unlike last year, when kickoff times were unpredictable and so were the so-called tailgating policies, Appalachian’s home schedule appears to be a tailgaters dream. Fans of Appalachian football have been blessed with six home football games, all on Saturday. Two games have announced kickoff times; Old Dominion on September 10th at 3:30pm and Miami, the following weekend at noon. The remainder of the schedules kickoff times will be announced usually the Monday the week before the game. We might have to adjust our menu on the fly if needed. The last game of the season has started earlier in the afternoon than the usual 3:30pm kickoff.
For those who are familiar with our process, you can probably skip this paragraph. For those that are new to the tailgate, and there will be several new faces, here is the deal. For six home games, a $50 donation, per person, $100 per couple, covers everything. A main course and everything that comes with it from propane to paprika. A full donation or as we prefer to call it “tailgate dues” are always appreciated at the beginning of the season. For those who prefer to spread it out throughout the season, no worries, we are flexible. For those are coming to one or two games, just ask on gameday, and we’ll give you a fair price. Bartering is encouraged and expected.
The first game of the season brings on the Old Dominion Monarchs. This was one of the tougher games to come to a theme for the tailgate. Monarchs are pretty boring overall. They sit on their throne forever until they die, or someone kills them. What do we make that smokes on a grill for a long time before they are destroyed? Our baby back ribs is what. Easily the most popular meal we’ve made over the years, it’s fitting for a king.
How do we welcome five-time national champion Miami to Boone? With our rendition of the Cuban sandwich. We’ll use five toppings, ham, salami, Swiss cheese, pickles, and our secret ingredient, a Carolina style smoked pork tenderloin to give the famous Cuban sandwich a local twist. For the less hearty appetites, we’ll also fry some eggs for a more brunch-like feel for a high noon kickoff.
Black Saturday will greet Georgia State for this third home game of the season. The leaves may be turning or the weather could be rather warm for October 1st, so we’ll change it up from our typical championship chili. The last time Georgia State came to Boone, we all experienced a nice snow storm that left the Panthers with zero points on the scoreboard. Chicken and blueberry waffles were a hit two years ago, and they will make their second all-time appearance on the menu.
The Homecoming opponent is Idaho and we all know what that means. The tradition of a Thanksgiving meal for Homecoming has been in place since at least 2002. We see no need to change what has been working for such a long time. If you remember, the last time Idaho was in town, loaded baked potatoes with the championship chili was served.
The first weekend of November brings in a new Sun Belt opponent for the Mountaineers. Texas State will make its first visit halfway across the county with a new coach, Everett Withers, who was formerly the coach at James Madison and also spent time in Boone as an assistant. For the inaugural game against the Bobcats in #FunBelt play, we’ll try our hand at a Texas favorite; brisket. Some take their brisket(the chest muscle of the steer), with a savory sauce and others prefer it dry.
Concluding the same home slate, we’ll finish with a familiar recipe, but not so much for the locals. Louisiana is known for the French dishes, and nothing beats a piping hot bowl of jambalaya in mid-November. The UL-Monroe Warhawks also have a first year head coach in Matt Viator, who spent his previous ten seasons as head coach of his alma mater, McNeese State.