A GREAT TRADITION OF TAILGATING!
Parents, family, friends and fans of Amherst football gather before, at halftime and after all games – home and away – and we would love to see you at the tailgates. Whether able to make all the games or a single game, whether you’re planning a big tailgate party or just coming to watch the game, you are welcome and encouraged to hang out on the sidelines at any and all games!
PLEASE come by and introduce yourself!!
***FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS***
(1) What is the player tent and is it where we tailgate?
- Player Tent. The player tent is the large white tent (home games only) located on the lip (closest to the Field House) of Pratt Field. Families are invited to gather here before and during the game; it is also where the players eat after the game.
- Tailgating. We love to see families tailgating around the Player Tent! Feel free to catch some shade or have a seat before and during the game in the player tent but once the game is over we make room for the boys.
(2) Is there a Player Tent at away games? How about Tailgating?
- Player Tent. There is no large white player tent at away games but there is always an away game player meal. The host school lets us know where we can set up our tailgates and the player meal area. Maps to these areas are available on the website and you will receive them in our weekly game email newsletter.
- Tailgating. Families are ALWAYS tailgating at away games.
(3) Who provides the food for the player tent and away game player meals?
- The food in the home game player tent and the away game player meals is strictly for the team and coaches, paid for by your family dues donations.
- If any incidentals are needed (ice, water, desserts, etc..) we will send an email via Sign-Up Genuis
(4) Do I need to bring my own food and drinks in order to tailgate?
- If you would like to eat and drink, then yes. Each family is responsible for bringing their own food and drinks to their tailgate but everyone mingles once we are together. You DO NOT need to bring food and drink to socialize with the group. Stop by and say hello even if you are not planning on bringing your own tailgate spread!
- Some families enjoy, and are able, to bring food to cook for the players after the game. Please don’t go overboard as the AFPA makes sure the boys are well fed, especially at home games where we have contracted a caterer.
(5) What do people bring to a tailgate?
- Food. Tailgates range from all-out tailgates (pop-up tents, tables, grills, coolers and all the fixings) to others who prefer a simpler approach and just bring sandwiches and cooler. Don’t feel like packing anything? No problem, Amherst and away game schools have snack huts! Again, you DO NOT need bring food and drinks to socialize on the sidelines.
- Alcohol. Alcohol policies differ at each field and the policies can be found on all tailgate maps.
- Arrival and Parking. If you are planning on setting up a tailgate, we suggest you arrive a little early to stake out your space – most fields allow you arrive 2 hours prior to game time. At home games you can pull into the field using the Northhampton Road entrance, through the security gate and unload your car. You will then be required to move your car to one of the legal parking spots around the field. Easier than lugging your belongings across the field.
- Away game parking. Away game tailgate maps will point you to the area where the families gather to tailgate and the team joins us after the game. The tailgate areas differ in size and distance to the field but all are within walking distance to the fields.
(6) Are there any hotels in the area if we want to stay for the weekend?
- Staying overnight. If you are planning on staying overnight or for the weekend, be sure to get your hotels as soon as possible. We do compete for lodging with UMASS during season and rooms can be limited, especially for Homecoming and Family Weekend. For those with seniors graduating on May 24, we suggest you get your hotel rooms as soon as possible; they fill up quick. Below are just some of the options in the area:
- Inn on Boltwood – 413.256.8200 – .5 miles from Pratt Field
- Courtyard Marriot – 413.256.5454 – 1.1 mile from Pratt Field
- Hampton Inn Hadley Amherst – 413.586.4851 – 5.1 miles from Pratt Field
- Holiday Inn Express & Suites – 413.582.0002 – 2.1 miles from Pratt Field
- Howard Johnson By Windham – 413.586.0114 – 2.1 miles from Pratt Field
(7) Is there anything else I should know about game day?
- Lanyards/Nametags: We will do our best to have the team lanyards and nametags available at the first home game. Depending on when the boys choose their numbers these may not be available until the 2nd game. You will receive an email asking you to review your lanyard and name tag information.
- Opening Day: First home game of the season can be intimidating, especially to our underclassmen parents. When you arrive, make sure you head over to the player tent and (hopefully) pick up your lanyards and name-tags and ask any questions you may have, but more importantly come over to meet the upperclassmen families and have some fun!!
- Weather. It’s New England and weather can vary! Generally speaking, the early games can be very warm on the home side of Pratt Field so be sure to bring a hat, sunglasses, sunscreen and dress for a few hours in the sun. In cooler weather, the sun at Pratt Field helps! Be sure to check the weather before heading out for the game.