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Smoke Signals: Get your game grill on

blog-tailgate.jpg

Redskins jersey? Check. Redskins cap? Check. Redskins-emblazoned barbecue grill?
Ummm…

What? You don’t fire up a fly-the-colors team rig on Game Day? And you call yourself a fan.

Like peanut butter and chocolate, sports and barbecue are made for one another. With months to go in tailgate season, if you are decked out from head-to-toe in team regalia but feel there’s still something missing, maybe what you need is a gargantuan rig shaped exactly like a football. Brown, with a white stripe circling both ends and white “laces” down the center, the towable grill cooks ribs for about 500 of your closest friends

Iowa-based Holstein Manufacturing makes the rigs with the logo of the Iowa Hawkeyes or Nebraska Huskers on them. But they’ll customize for your favorite team. So, if something, oh, 150 feet long by 60 feet wide is what you need to show just how devoted you are, then all you need is between $5,000 and $7,300, and you too can be the talk of the parking lot.

If your VW Passat will have a little trouble pulling that behemoth, you might prefer the Keg-A-Que. Shaped like a small beer keg and weighing 15 pounds, the chrome propane or charcoal grill with heat-resistant handles comes with the logo of whatever team in the NFL you root for. Wisconsin-based Keg-A-Que also makes a version for baseball teams, but only the Milwaukee Brewers, Chicago Cubs and White Sox, and the Yankees and Mets. (What, no Nationals?)
It has collapsible legs for easy storage and you can get it in a charcoal or propane version. It’s on sale now for $90.

If you can’t make it to the game, but still want to show your team loyalty, try Team Grill. The different sizes of backyard gas rigs are available in the color and insignia of every NFL and NBA team and 30 college teams, including Virginia and Virginia Tech, but not Maryland. Prices range from $399 for the folding-leg “Tailgate Series” to $1,249 for the 58,000 BTU “Patio Series MVP.”

Don’t have that lovin’ feeling enough to spring for a team rig? Maybe just buy a weatherproof grill cover. For between $25 and $35, Football Fanatics carries heavy-duty vinyl covers with the color and logo for nearly 100 college and pro teams.

Of course, you could always just go old school: throw some dogs on the old emblem-less Hibachi and trash talk fans of the opposing team as they walk past. Not as visual, maybe. But, drawing on time-honored sports tradition, what you can’t show in pride you can make up for in belligerence.

- Jim Shahin

By Jim Shahin  | October 19, 2010; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  Smoke Signals  | Tags:  Jim Shahin, barbecue  
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