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Onward State’s Tailgating Essentials Survival Guide

Think you’re ready for Penn State football? Even if you’ve been around the block a time or two, you might think you are, but are you really ready?

As a senior tailgater, I know the essentials to bring with me for every game. Over the years, I’ve been burned by the sun, had my phone die in the seemingly service-less tailgating fields three hours before kick-off, and felt the dehydration of a hangover mixed with excessive heat and continued binge drinking.

Essentially, I’ve been there and done that. So, help me, help you, help yourself, by giving you a couple of tips and tricks to survive a Saturday of college football in Happy Valley.


By November, the thought of applying sunscreen for any tailgating extravaganza will be obsolete, but until then, it’s best to lather up.

There’s nothing worse than spending hours outdoors soaking up the sun in a slightly inebriated state, unable to feel the sun’s rays beating down on you. Of course, that is until you wake up the next morning with the outline of a pawprint sunburned onto your cheek.

Do yourself a favor and lather up on the sunscreen. You’ll only need it for a few weeks anyway and it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Portable Charger

With the new digital student ticket process at Beaver Stadium for students, ensuring your phone is charged is a must. A dead phone doesn’t mean you’ll be barred from entry, however. Instead, you’ll need to verify your identity at another location with your ID, but it’s still a hassle.

Bringing a portable charger along with you to the fields is easy and potentially life-saving. It ensures that you’ll be able to use your phone to locate friends and tailgates all day long. Not to mention, most portable chargers fit easily in your pocket.


While it might seem silly to bring snacks along with you to the tailgates, it’s actually not that absurd of an idea. Most family tailgates are stocked to the brim with hot dogs and burgers, but student-run tailgates are often only stocked to the brim with alcohol.

Of course, you could always purchase a chicken basket inside the stadium or get something at one of the food trucks lining Curtin Road, but that can be expensive if you aren’t on a meal plan. It’s often more cost-effective to bring along a couple snack packs for yourself and your friends just in case.


This point is especially relevant for any mid-day games early in the season. As the sun starts to set, usually about half of the South End Zone are thrown into the grips of blinding sunlight.

Sunscreen might protect your skin from the sun’s rays, but without a hat or sunglasses, nothing will protect your eyes. Plus, after spending $239 on season tickets, who wants to miss half of a football game because of the sun glare? It’s an easily avoidable issue if you’re thinking it through.

A Jersey Of The Other Team

To burn. (Just kidding, we don’t promote violence or pyromania).

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About the Author

Emma Dieter

Emma is a senior from the ever-popular "right-outside" Philly area studying labor employment relations and PR. She's also the Student Life editor for Onward State. She has been a Penn Stater from cradle and will continue to bleed blue and white, 'til grave. She loves trashy romance novels, watching Netflix, and crying over cute videos of dogs. If you ever want to talk more with her about how great she is, or simply have other inquiries, feel free to email her at [email protected]


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