While I was traveling, my Dad celebrated his 77th birthday. He likes us to make a big celebration out of it and I think once you get over 70 and/or have 9 kids, you should more or less get your way on your birthday, so we always throw him a pretty good party. I was sad to miss it this year, probably the first time in the last 10 years that I haven't been there (of course, I was probably petting a koala right then so things balance out). This year's party was a tailgating party at the Milwaukee Brewer's game.
Tailgating is a bit of a religion in Wisconsin, whether at Brewer's games or at Packer's games. Much is made of how at Miller Park (the Milwaukee baseball stadium) you can tailgate, which you totally cannot do at many loser baseball stadiums (ie Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs) around the country. Some of my best Wisconsin memories involve tailgating with my sister Kathy at Brewer's games when I was a kid. The only true hard and fast rule of tailgating in Wisconsin is that bad weather (too cold, too much rain, too much freezing rain, too much snow, hail the size of baseballs) doesn't stop the tailgate party.
Apparently, it poured during the entire party for my Dad, but there were tents so no problem :)
The whole story of the birthday party (well, and a bunch of stuff about other tailgaters) was in the Milwaukee Journal Food Section yesterday. The part about my family is mid-way down this article. I love the quotes from my sister Karen (in the yellow jacket in the picture) and that recipe for Cowboy Caviar at the end of the article is super yummy, from personal experience. I particularly loved the picture in the article of the giant spread of cheeses that they had. And that, my friends, is what a genuine Unertl party looks like.