Sunday Night Football

Tvpartyw830 Since football season is right around the corner, we're taking advantage of the preseason coverage to get our game-day party faces on for when the real thing hits. And nothing beats the preseason Sunday Night Football matchup between the Chicago Bears and the Denver Broncos Aug. 30 on NBC. So if you're psyched that football season is right around the corner and you love tailgating with your friends, get your cleats out of the attic and fire up the grill -- we're throwing a preseason pigskin party!

Setting the scene:
Throwing a football-themed bash doesn't require a whole lotta thought -- strategically place a few footballs, shoulder pads and cheerleaders around the room, and you're good to go -- but if you hyper-focus on the teams and their respective cities, it helps generate a little more passion in the rivalry. This week, we are celebrating two of the greatest cities in the country that tend to fall completely out of the American consciousness: Denver and Chicago. One is mile high; the other is mile wide. One has Western flair; the other, delays at O'Hare. So get out your jigsaw and build a personal-size snowcapped Rocky Mount. You'll need some plywood, some green paint and that spray-on fake snow from the bottom of your Christmas ornament box. If your mountains come out crappy, paint them red and say it's Red Rocks. And since they enjoy home-field advantage for this game, lay out a Milliken & Company Broncos home-field area rug. To represent Chicago, we've chosen the two things it's best known for: Oprah and wind. So cover one side of the room with covers of O magazine and get an industrial fan. Add to that a Bears rocker recliner and a Topperscot Bears yard light, and you're good to go.

Attire:
It goes without saying that guests need to pick one team or the other. Team jerseys, hats, T-shirts, sweatshirts, sneakers, slippers, mascot hats, football heads, etc., are absolutely required.

On the menu:
Denver lovers get served Denver omelets, thick steaks and Coors Light. Bears lovers get deep-dish pizzas; sausage, peppers and onions; and cheesecake.

On the hi-fi:
Rocky Mountain High by John Denver, Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead by Warren Zevon, My Kind of Town and Chicago by Frank Sinatra, The Night Chicago Died by Paper Lace.

The showstopper:
You think you're a real fan? Well not so fast, buddy. True fans put their money where their mouths are, so order a giant inflatable football helmet that's large enough to watch the game in from Landmark Creations. You've probably seen pro and college teams run out through them during introductions. They're awesome. And you should buy one.