Team Tailgate

Normal 0 0 1 349 1992 16 3 2446 11.1282 0 0 0 Loud music floatsthrough the school grounds. A football and Frisbee fly across thesky. The delicious smell of grilled burgers and hotdogs hangs thickly inthe air. The parking lot is a sea of orange. It’s a Friday night. It’s footballseason. And that can only mean one thing: tailgating. Over the past fewyears, Ames High School has seen many forms of this popular, pre-game activity.Different tailgating groups have been as variedas the students of the high school they attend. Several years ago therewas Team Tailgate, a fun loving group reserved for upperclassmen. Downthe road came Vortex, a raucous group, whose members were easily identified bytheir V shaped arm movements at games. Last year there werea few new tailgating groups. There was Chillgate, well known for the orangejumpsuits of its members, and Malegate, which could easily be found byfollowing the member’s loud shouts of “wu-wu-wu-WU TANG!”; the name of theirfavorite rap group. But this year thereis only one tailgating group that parties in the parking lot of Ames Highbefore games, and that is Team Tailgate. This year, seniors Jordan Fitzsimmonsand Cory Baughman have resurrected the old standard of Ames tailgating groups. “We resurrected TeamTailgate so that the students of Ames High can be united again,” saidFitzsimmons. “Team Tailgate ended so abruptly after Benny (Nelson) left, andstudents were really missing out.” An integral part ofTailgating is the music, and Team Tailgate has plenty of that, provided bysenior David Louis. “We wanted to combine all the tailgates so that it wouldstop being like middle school dances,” L o uissaid. “Team Tailgate is the best [school] spirit thing in awhile, and no one isexcluded, except underclassmen, but they can look forward to joining in only afew years.” Juniors,who have previously been less involved in tailgating, are enjoying the newunited tailgating group as well. “I like the fact that I can just bemyself,” said junior Malcolm Squire as he selected a new song to dance to. “Thefood and music are pretty good too.” Team Tailgate isuniting the upperclassmen of Ames High to enjoy some pre-game celebrations andcheer on the team they dutifully follow. After several years of thestudents being split, this new group of students hopes to boost team spirit,grill some tasty food, and try to have a little fun while they’re at it.