Hosting a NCAA Title Game Party

By Ian Acosta on April 3, 2017

The end of March Madness is fast approaching. With many championship games come numerous opportunities to host a party or get together with friends, and the NCAA title game is no different.

Why bother going to a crowded bar or restaurant to wait around for what often seems like an eternity just to get a drink or even food? Stay away from the hassle and headache of going out and instead host an equally fun and exciting party. Even better, you decide with whom you get to watch the game, i.e. no loud or rowdy strangers to get in your way of enjoying what is sure to be a great game.

Here are a couple things to keep on your list and to keep in mind when planning and throwing a party for the game.

 

Timing

Timing is everything. Tip-off is scheduled for around 9 p.m. EST. Even though the game is on a Monday, it should give your guests some time to get off of work and head over to the party. For those on the east coast, 9 p.m. may be a bit late while on the west coast, tip-time will be around 6. For those in the Midwest, count on an 8 p.m. start.

How can you time the start of your party just right? If you are planning on starting your party around 8 or 9 local time, have some dinner spread locked and loaded for when friends stop by. On the west coast and planning on enjoying the game? Lay out some appetizers just in time for the start and have some dinner items prepared to serve during halftime. Timing the start of your party just right can allow you to throw a party your friends will be talking about until next year’s title game.

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Supplies

The proper supplies are key. To keep it easy on everyone, stay away from anything that can crack or break by dropping, i.e. glass or porcelain. What is the best alternative? Stock up on paper plates and solo cups. This way, cleanup is quick and convenient while not having to worry too much about an out of control mess.

Remember to stock up on koozies and coasters to reduce water damage on your couches, tables, and anywhere else. Also, don’t skimp on the napkins and paper towels!

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Food

The age-old question: what is the best party food for the big game? Ideally, finger foods or snacks which do not require much concentration or distraction from the game at hand. Because let’s face it, that is the whole reason people are there (to watch the game)!

My personal favorites are also quite easy to prepare and serve. Chili cheese dip requires a stick of cream cheese and a can of chili to prepare in the oven that goes great with chips. Chicken wings can be picked up at the store or quickly baked in the oven and covered with your favorite sauce. Who doesn’t love chips and guacamole? Pick up a packaged guacamole recipe that requires a couple avocados and you have simple and delicious guacamole in minutes. Pizza is also a necessity. Don’t want to make your own? No problem. Pick up your favorite brand of frozen pizza so that everyone can get a piece.

My all-time favorite finger food for a big game? Sliders. Prepare these mini burgers with a packet of French onion soup mix to make them extra savory. Top with a slice of cheddar cheese and they will fly off the plate faster than you can replace them!

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Drinks

Get a sense of what your guests want before they arrive. Shoot a text, send an email, go by carrier pigeon, whatever it may be! For those who prefer to keep it non-alcoholic, stock up on a few liters of soda or iced tea. If you do choose to have some beers or mixers, remember to be responsible and hold others accountable as well. Keep it a make-it-yourself style bar. Let your guests prepare what they wish but keep a decent selection on hand for all to enjoy. Remember, make sure your guests act responsibly!

The title game is sure to be a blast. Between Gonzaga and North Carolina battling it for the biggest prize in the spring, every minute will be must-watch TV. The only thing to complement a fun-filled game is an equally exciting and entertaining party. You can be the host that everyone talks about for your party-throwing prowess. The biggest factor to keep in mind is timing. Expect some guests to be late but that is alright. Have everything laid out and prepared so that your guests can grab a snack and drink and kick back and relax. Have a great time!

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