Lamar Hunt, owner of the Kansas City Chiefs, recently ushered in a new tradition of pre-game partying with the assistance of a bona fide expert on the subject – the self-proclaimed commissioner of tailgating, Joe Cahn.
According to a report in the Kansas City Star, the pregame “event” is a way for the National Football League franchise to officially welcome an advanced and more serious brand of tailgating to Arrowhead Stadium.
No longer will fans be forced to wait until game day to stuff their faces with beef and beer. Now they can pay $90 to park their RVs the day before, get the party started, and watch the game with an Arrowhead hangover.
“It just adds another way for fun,” said Hunt, who performed the official ribbon cutting for the event with Cahn. “And that’s what the Kansas City Chiefs hope to be, is fun.”
According to Cahn, the Chiefs are the second team in the NFL to allow overnight tailgating, joining Buffalo. Chiefs’ personnel designed the program with NASCAR’s weekend infield parties loosely in mind.
Cahn, by the way, was on hand by special invite from the Chiefs and received a lifetime pass to Arrowhead as part of the ceremony.
He showed up Friday (Aug. 19) afternoon in his original “Joemobile” RV, the first one through, and parked without paying.
“Hey, I am the commissioner,” he said. “That has its privileges.”
Cahn set up a table outside his rig, opened a couple of bags of chips and waited. But a storm came through about 9:30 p.m., turning the gravel and dirt lot into more of a muddy pond and limiting the turnout.
Chiefs’ officials weren’t concerned about the sparse crowd. They purposely didn’t advertise the program to any season-ticket holders, hoping to work the kinks out in front of smaller groups. The only mention of the program was in a link off the team’s website.
Word is sure to get out now, though, and the Chiefs are expecting the lot to fill up with RVs, particularly for the season opener against the Jets on Sept. 11.
“Obviously for a preseason game it’s not the intention to get off to a huge running start,” Hunt said. “But for our Sunday games especially, we’ll have a lot of people who’ll want to do this and come in the evening before and begin to celebrate the games in advance.”