The University of Wisconsin is home to some of the best tailgating in the country.
Where you tailgate depends on who you know, people steak out the same spots week after week. The blocks surrounding Camp Randall Stadium are littered with mini camps of alum, current students, and fans. Madison’s streets ran red with Badger pride.
The people of Madison are extremely friendly. I heard very little belittling of the Purdue faithful, props to them for making the 6 hour trek in what they had to believe would be a blow out. Another example of Madison’s friendliness came in the form of the party bus that was parked next to us. MWM contributor Derek Steinborn and I were talking with friends and having a few beers when we saw a Cardinal helmet flash on the television of the bus. As we approached what appeared to be the leader; I was nervous he would ignore our request to leave the game on and turn on a more relevant game to a Badger fan. Much to my initial pessimism he obliged and several people were showing interest in the game.
Enough about the bowl eligible Ball State Cardinals, I visited Madison for the Badger football experience. After tailgating, Derek and I decided to join up with our group of friends, a mix of UW and Purdue fans. For this we met up at Jordan’s Big 10 Pub at 1330 Regent St Madison. From what I have researched and been told this is a tale of two bars. During Badger home games this is basically a tailgate spot. I would wager anything that I saw more people at Big 10 than I have at some Ball State football games. The Big 10 had a concert/festival environment. Beer/liquor and food venders were in little demand, as they were everywhere. The beers, which ranged from Miller Lite to Labatt Blue were reasonably priced and the food smelled and looked delicious. Management prepares extremely well. More than enough port-potties paired with the inside bathrooms were never too busy, nor to gross. Televisions/coverage of the game was as plentiful, if not more. Televisions and the loud speakers gave the patrons up to date on the Badgers and other games from around the NCAA.
After the game was well decided a fraction of us decided to get some dinner. Our journey took us to The Plaza Tavern, located at 319 North Henry Street. Just 3 blocks west of the Capitol, and a 5 minute cab ride, The Plaza Tavern is the perfect place to transition from tailgating to nightlife. With a combination of large quantities of cheap beer, delicious food, and excellent murals of Wisconsin scenery The Plaza was a perfect finish to my Wisconsin football game day.