New Rules for Muni?

Take a look at this link before you pack up and head down. It might change your approach. Thanks to RadioHannibal for sending the link my way!

See you in the lots!



3 out of 4…? 4 out of 5…?

Tomorrow’s game gives us a shot at 4 wins out of the last 5, which to my way of thinking puts us back in the thick of things. I fully expect my trips to the lots on Sunday to be fiery and full of inspiration. AFC North rivalries (like the one against the Baltimore Ravens tomorrow) always beings out the energy and passion from the fans that isn’t quite the same the rest of the season. The Ravens are having a tough go of it this year; even though they have OSU’s Heisman winner Troy Smith (did I mention I held the Heisman earlier this week?) they’re nearly out of the picture already.

The response to The Browns Fan’s Tailgating Guide has been off the charts and overwhelmingly positive. I’m glad to read reviews like this because, as Jim Vickers indicates, that’s exactly what I was aiming for with the book. I should have some more media to post here in the coming days, including some audio from Mark “Munch” Bishop, “Miller, Mihalik and Mike” on WNCX, Vince Koza’s show on ESPN Lima and two great appearances on WEOL in Elyria/Lorain — one with Les Sekely and the other with Z and the guys on the “Monday Night Sports Show”.

At this point, I’m hoping for a 2-0 (Sunday and Thursday) and to see Derek Anderson do what we all know he’s capable of. Anyone else notice he seems to do better when K2 isn’t on the field? Or is that just me…? Dunno. Anyway, I’ll see you in the lots tomorrow with backpack and reporters in tow.


What a difference a month makes…

Like most Browns fans, I started out the season with tremendous optimism in my 10-6 prediction. Beginning to think I could be a tad dyslexic in my pre-Cowboys game prediction. Maybe it’s better to say 6-10. The odds that the team will be appropriately healed up, that Derek Anderson will revert to his early season 2007 self and our defense will be up to the challenges that the next 6 games will offer is a lot to ask. So is the run of wins that sports show callers  are suggesting will be necessary to save Romeo Crennel’s coaching job. These thoughts have been tossed around a great deal over the last couple weeks and sure to be a hot topic in the parking lots this coming Monday night as the Browns take on the Super Bowl champion New York Giants on “Monday Night Football.”

It’s been called a “make or break” game on a number of levels; the odds most certainly are not in our favor. Tailgaters are sure to be whipped up into a lather for the festivities and I can’t wait to take the Muni Lot’s temperature on the subject. What are your predictions for how the rest of the season? Regardless of the outcome, the lots have been hopping this year. The Dallas opener (left) inspired many to celebrate legendary Browns coach (and father of modern football) Paul Brown’s 100th Birthday. And the sustained level of partying for the late Pittsburgh game was only outshined by last year’s home opener Browns/Steelers tailgate. Talk about a fevered pitch… I’ll leave you with some photos from the first two regular home tailgates.

By the way, the book The Browns Fan’s Tailgating Guide has officially shipped to stores and will be available through and other online and local channels as well. In it, you’ll learn all about what makes for a successful Browns tailgate from some of the hardcore who take part every week. It’s one-third historical, one-third present day and one-third “how-to” with some great anecdotes from Browns fans, tailgaters, local sports writers and sportscasters. And (shameless plug) it makes a great gift.

I’ll be down in the Muni Lot Monday night and look forward to seeing you all there.


2008: “There’s always THIS year…”

Truer words were never spoken. Hope springs eternal every September… and if the sights and sounds of the Cleveland Municipal Parking Lot and other tailgating locations surrounding Cleveland Browns Stadium after Labor Day don’t get you excited about football season, someone should check you for a pulse.

The 2008 NFL Season kicks off today, with our beloved Browns taking on NFC juggernauts the Dallas Cowboys only moments away. As a Browns fan, I teeter between 10-6 and 9-7 as a personal prediction (those games against Jacksonville and Pittsburgh can cause such waffling). But I get a sense after last year that I’m not the only one feeling this way about our chances. Either way, I get a sense that this year the playoffs are in order… call it living in Believeland.

Like fans in other gridiron strongholds in the Midwest, Clevelanders love tailgating almost as much as the beloved Cleveland Browns they honor with parties every week. Tailgating is more than just a get-together packed with like-minded football enthusiasts, it’s an event—a weekly opportunity for creativity and camaraderie to spring eternal alongside the hopes we all have for the team’s inevitable success.

Tailgating isn’t just big in Cleveland, it is big everywhere… but if you ask other fans across the country who “does it up” the best, Cleveland most certainly qualifies. Some tailgating lives up to the questionable, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” reputation it has earned over the years. And it doesn’t take a newbie bystander long to see that there’s some hardcore revelry and excess going on every Sunday—the kind usually reserved for the likes of college freshmen who are finally free of their parents. But it’s so much more than that. 

There’s also a kinder, gentler and largershared experience that borders on collective consciousness… it’s the kind of thing experienced less and less in our country as we continue to become more and more “wired” and technologcally advanced.. Tailgating is one of the few homespun, grassroots “happenings” still unspoiled by corporate America, and it is very much a full-contact sport like football.

Despite its popularity and surging tailgate-related sales reaching $12 billion in 2007, the experience is still largely owned and operated by fans. Which is how it should always be. And no one does tailgating better than football towns like Cleveland.

All of these reasons only begin to scratch the surface on why I chose to write my first book about Cleveland Browns tailating. You’ll find by literary debut (released by Gray and Company, Publishers and titled The Browns Fan’s Tailgating Guide) in bookstores and online in a matter of days. It’s a fun, celebratory read acknowledging the creativity, fun, customs, traditions and memories branching from pre-game tailgating. It’s not scandalous and not a “tell-all” (not supposed to be… “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” remember?).

I’m as excited about the Browns as the next fan and equally excited to have a book celebrating this pastime within a pastime published by the fine folks who have offered you works by everyone from Terry Pluto and Chuck and Michael Heaton to Dick Feagler and Omar Vizquel. It’s a thrill to share a stage with such an esteemed crowd.

I’ll be sharing photos, video and all kinds of other great things for you tailgating Browns fans (and the tailgate-curious) during the season and beyond on this blog. I’d love it if you’d share your gameday experiences, recipes, anecdotes, stories and all things Browns-tailgate-related. I’ll be sharing plenty of exclusive information, interviews and other items here on the blog just for you, C-Town.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a chili dog (dawg?) to finish and a ton of folks to catch up with here in the Muni Lot… look for pictures and a debriefing on the Browns/Cowboys game and pre-game party very soon.

Here we go, Brownies… here we go…


Coming Fall 2008…

A new book by Peter Chakerian. Published by Gray & Company, Publishers.

Whether you tailgate in the Muni Lot with hoards of other Browns fans or in the backyard with the neighbors, you’ll enjoy the inspiring party mix of useful tips and fun stories in this book. Reporter Peter Chakerian spent a year hanging with the city’s most dedicated tailgaters to uncover the food, games, clothes, and gear that make Browns tailgating such a wild pastime. It’s filled with their suggestions for where and how to tailgate, as well as their favorite tailgating tales. It’s a celebration for the veteran tailgater–and a great introduction for newbies.

The Book

Browns Fans' Tailgating Guide
October 2017
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Flickr Photos