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Fans enjoying the ride (Image: Naomi Tomky)

5 reasons sailgating is the best way to get to the UW game

Welcome to peak Seattle, where we stuff ourselves silly on unlimited seafood while staring out at sweeping views of the Space Needle, then hop aboard a boat where we sip local microbrews on our way to cheer for the Huskies on a sun-filled fall day.

Ivar's offers Sailgating for every Husky home game: $85 buys you a buffet brunch (or dinner, for evening games), a parking spot at the Salmon House on Lake Union, and a round-trip ride to the game on the party boat.

What makes this the best way to get to the game? Besides the obvious: getting to say "sailgating" and "I'm on a boat!" over and over? Well, we took on the tough job of researching that this weekend, and here's what we've learned:

  1. Unlimited crab. Multiple kinds of crab. Jumbled, in a giant bin. For you to eat as much of as you want to. There is lots of food (and even a chocolate fountain), but when was the last time you could just eat Dungeness crab until you popped? That's what I thought. Also, you'll eat the same fish and chips or chowder that everyone else buys at the game, but from real dishes...and in bottomless quantities.
  2. Husky Stadium is called "the best setting in college football for a really good reason: the giant lake you can see from the stands, the towering mountains behind it. By arriving on a boat, you get to be a part of that view and enjoy it from another angle.
  3. Built in tailgating buddies: Don't know other people going to the game, in from out of town, or secretly hate your tailgating friends? The boat sported plenty of friendly locals supporting the Dawgs and curious visitors adopting the purple and gold for the day and everyone was just looking to talk football have a few drinks. The amiable atmosphere was a refreshing surprise for a town known for the "Seattle Freeze." (Is there a secret clause where it doesn't exist on boats? We think so).
  4. Once at the game, the boat converts into a bar, meaning that if you want a drink during halftime or once the Dawgs are already up by 40 points (which has happened at both games so far this season), you just take a quick stroll down to the boat bar (isn't that just fun to say?) and grab a beer.
  5. No fighting the crowds to get home: the boat leaves 30 minutes after the game, which means instead of fighting the crowds trying to get to the buses and then standing in endless lines, you just hop on the boat, grab a drink, sit in the sun and wait for your sail home. You'll get home faster than if you took the bus and with about 90% less stress.

Grab your reservation for the next home game on Ivar's website.