How to throw a legit Superbowl XLV party

NFL SuperbowlSuperbowl Sunday (Sun. Feb. 6) is the most anticipated Sunday of the year. Superbowl is also a great excuse to throw a party. And no, NFL football and the Superbowl are not just for guys.

The key to a successful party is a winning game plan (sorry, just had to make that analogy). If you haven’t already sent invites, go for the fast easy method and send out themed evites.

Next most important item for a Superbowl party is a television set. Big HDTV is the best way to go, but as long as there is a decent sized screen, you’re set. Tivo (or DVR) is also preferred so you can rewind to go back to key points in the game, and re-watch the best commercials.

Pre-game: Create a good game watching atmosphere. Deck out the house with pennants and other things game-related. Team colors for the Green Bay Packers are green and yellow and the Pittsburgh Steelers are black and gold so incorporating the color scheme shouldn’t be too hard.

If you’re rooting for one team over the other, support your guys by wearing their jerseys. If you don’t have a favorite team, a fun way to stoke the rivalry is to put a line of tape down and set up fan zones where team allies can trash talk to their opponents. It might be a good idea to hide any breakable items, because you never know what kind of calls the ref could make.

To jump start the spirit of the party, provide guests with team memorabilia like banners, or pom-poms. You can even take it one step further by providing face paint.

Offense vs. Defense Depending on your guest list, it might be a good idea to create two different party spaces — one for the die-hard fans and another for the social butterflies. Make sure the major football fans have premium seating in front of the screen. For less serious fans, set up a TV in another area so they can mingle without catching any dirty looks.

Kick-off: In order to achieve the perfect party, yummy snacks are a must. Finger foods, such as buffalo wings, popcorn, chips and dip, veggies and cold cuts, are always great to eat in front of the TV. Wisconsin traditions using good old Wisconsin cheese (Fondue anyone?) or bratwurst dishes show support of the Greenbay Packers or try some Pittsburgh-themed food like kielbasa, chipped ham or pierogies while rootin’ for the Steelers.  For snacks, a fun idea is to get customized m&ms in your team colors.

Halftime: Many of your guests won’t be interested in watching halftime so have other things ready for them to do. These activities can range from trivia or cards to video games or a football toss outdoors. You can also set up a voting pool so partygoers can pick the game-winning play, most valuable player (MVP) and of course, best Super Bowl commercial. You might want to give away small novelty prizes to the winners.

Post Game: Keep plenty of paper towels and garbage bags ready because there is sure to be plenty of spilled drinks and trash around. Disposable containers are also great for splitting up the leftovers and sending them home with your guests.

Remember, on the West coast, the game is usually on at about 3:30, so you can pretty much eat dinner while the game is on, but on the East coast you should probably start eating before the game.

Not a football fan? Don’t know anything about holding penalties and blitz packages? If you don’t know about football but want a crash course or at least want to be able to impress the other people watching the game with your knowledge, check out our Football Basics.

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