Even if you’re a not big sports fan, it’s hard to hate a sporting event. Guilty-pleasure foods. Color-coordinating outfits (as long as you like your team’s colors, are we right?). Endless camaraderie. With sporting events, there is something to enjoy for everyone. Don’t you love high-fiving strangers in the stands, even if you don’t know what just happened?
It’s hard not to feel the void, as watching your favorite teams on an empty sectional just isn’t the same. We miss being packed on the sofa or in the stands, shoulder-to-shoulder with our people. Though we all have hope for the end of the pandemic soon, there are still aspects that feel different and strange.
So what’s a person to do when our favorite things returning still feels weird and a little sad? For starters, reach out to your people and get through the separation together. Remember, they are likely struggling with the same things… it just might feel silly to complain about sporting events in the current climate. We’re here to remind you that it’s okay to feel FOMO about the little moments you’re missing. The good news? You can still surround yourself with community to help combat the blues. It only takes a little thinking outside the box. But don’t worry, you know we’ve already thought it through for you.
Here are a few ways to stay connected during your favorite sports’ season:
Since you cannot be at the stadium, bring the tailgate home. We encourage you to not accept defeat this year. 2021 isn’t a total wash AND your favorite team needs you in high spirits! So pull out all the stops, fire up the BBQ, and throw yourself the party you deserve. To keep a strong sense of community involvement, encourage your friends and family to do the same.
Are your people a hard sell? To get everyone on board:
Download a group texting app, like GroupMe or WhatsApp. If your friends are divided between Apple and Android products, these apps make it easy for everyone to connect. Nothing helps make you feel closer than some good-hearted trash talk.
Grab a group picture. Have your people pile on the couch with their roommates, family, or quaranteam and snap a pic. You can send your group’s images amongst one another and print out the pictures. Bonus if you hang on your refrigerators. With all our images being virtual these days (long before quarantine was a thing!), having something tangible will help you feel bonded.
Create a little friendly competition. Maybe you host a virtual “pre-game” Zoom call and play some trivia. You might hold a “Most Dedicated Fan” contest and encourage everyone to dress all out. Create a mini-fantasy league of your own. Or, if you’re not into sports allll that much, make a fun bet suited to your people. Do what makes sense for your group and ensure everyone feels included. It’s never cool to leave someone out, but being inclusive of everyone is now more important than ever.
Send a Greetabl Gift. This is the perfect idea to send to the “home team” of your own. You’ll instantly boost morale with a sweet surprise gift in the mail. We have endless options on greetabl.com, but check out a few of our favorite gift ideas perfect for a tailgate:
- Caramel Chocolate Popcorn
- Fudge Brittle
- Large Caramels
- Cowboy Steak Rub
- Mini Frosted Oreos
- Stone Shot Glass
- Uber Eats or Door Dash Gift Cards
All Aboard the Meal Train
We really miss congregating around chips and queso, pigs in a blanket, and a veggie tray. The kitchen island was invented for this reason alone! If the heart of the home is looking a little empty, bring everyone’s kitchens together!
A couple ways to execute a meal train:
- Ask people to “sign up” for different dishes to prepare and drop off. Create a route so everyone can make a contactless delivery without crossing paths. When you return home, a full meal of your people’s signature dishes will be waiting on your front porch!
- Surprise your people with a dish. If you are looking to do the unexpected for your friends and family, drop off a dish on everyone’s front porch. Does your group always beg you to make your famous cheesy potato casserole? Double chocolate chip brownies? This is a sentimental, thoughtful way to help your people feel closer together. Text them after you leave and watch their reactions from your car. While it’s not the same as a hug, there is big comfort in long-distance wave (and seeing your friends without the help of a computer screen!).
If you’ve learned anything through our series on virtual connection, we hope you’ve left with this takeaway: start by showing up. It doesn’t have to be elaborate or perfect. It certainly doesn’t have to follow any rules. As long as you’re taking active steps towards your people, you’re moving in the right direction. Happy homegating!