The First Friday Night

NASH students held their very first tailgate prior to the football game this past Friday.

Waverly Younts, Senior Staff Writer

Hosting and attending the legendary tailgate event before a home field Friday night football game has long been a tradition for NASH seniors. For the class of 2022, their very first tailgate and game of the season had been anticipated for months because they were not able to cheer on many of their favorite teams last year due to the pandemic. However, seniors were permitted to gather together and have this event before the game against Taylor Allderdice High School this past Friday. 

A typical tailgate for students includes activities such as playing spikeball and cornhole, taking pictures with friends arrayed in outfits in accordance with the theme of the game, and making memories that will last a lifetime. This two-hour-long event lived up to its expectations and was a great way to kick off the start of the school year.

For senior Luke Washabaugh, also known as the ultimate spikeball player, the event consisted of back-to-back wins of his favorite game and spending time with his friends.

“I have been looking forward to going to my first tailgate ever since I was a freshman,” he explained. “Our grade just gets along with each other really well and we always have fun when we are together.”

The Student Section leaders announced early last week that the theme for the tailgate and game was beachwear. North Allegheny students take their themed outfits for football games very seriously, so it was not surprising that students arrived at the tailgate looking like they just got back from a beach vacation. Some popular clothing items showcased at the tailgate included Hawaiian shirts, leis, sunglasses, bucket hats, lifeguard gear, flip flops, and even grass skirts. 

One of the best dressed at the tailgate was senior Mira Botula. When asked about her experience at the tailgate, she agreed with Washabaugh.

“Being at the tailgate on Friday was so fun because we could all see each other and get excited before the game started. I am so glad to be a part of the class of 2022,” Botula said.

The key member that truly completes a NASH tailgate is Skully, a beloved plastic skull placed on the top of a long wooden pole and the ultimate symbol of spirit for the Student Section. Skully made an appearance at the tailgate and even got in some pictures with students before making it to the stands and parting the sea during halftime. 

Even though football players are not able to attend the tailgate, some players are present in the form of floating heads and are always ready for photo ops. 

Senior football player Anthony Provenzano said he appreciates the tailgate crowd because it launches the excitement and spirit for the game to follow, which definitely helps the players get thrilled to play.

“When I arrived at the field to begin warmups, many people were already at the tailgate getting hyped up,” Provenzano said. “We could definitely feel that energy on the field as we got the first win of the season.”

As soon as the clock struck half-past seven, the Student Section leaders led the group down to the field and prepared for kickoff in the bleachers.

The North Allegheny Tigers started their season with a 1-0 record and an impressive final score of 47-14 against Allderdice.