Lynne poses in game day gear, alongside a picture of her food spread

Tackle Your Party Prep: We’re Pre-gaming with Houston Blogger Lynne Gabriel

Whether you’re a die-hard Falcons or Patriots fan, an armchair quarterback or completely clueless when it comes to football, we can all agree—there’s nothing better than an epic party for the big game! Friends, food, over-the-top commercials…it’s just as much about the camaraderie—and the party—as the football. And Target’s here to help every guest plan the perfect party. So we went to the heart of the action—Houston, Texas, where Sunday’s showdown will unfold, for some touchdown-worthy party inspiration from local lifestyle blogger Lynne Gabriel of Whatever is Lovely.

A recent newlywed and long-time football fan who’s living the dream of her hometown hosting the season’s biggest game, Lynne has lots of reasons to celebrate (even if her beloved Cowboys are sitting this one out). And this Houstonite loves to plan a good party—so warm up for your own celebration by pre-gaming with Lynne:

Lynne, you’re a football fan, so the big game is always a huge deal. Why is this year so special for you? 
It’s a once-in-a-lifetime chance to have the Super Bowl play out in your hometown, so my new husband, André, and I are soaking up every minute. For months, the city’s been prepping. And now that it’s almost go time, the excitement is contagious around here. Houston isn’t usually a tourist city, but we’re sure to have lots of visitors this weekend! We’re all gearing up with pre-game events like Super Bowl Live, a nine-day festival featuring local food trucks and some of the biggest Texas names in the music business. Then on Sunday, André and I will host our first party as a married couple, so that’s extra-special for us, too. We’re putting together a party that represents us both. 

Any fun traditions?
We’re pulling off a good ol’ Texas BBQ with friends and family—brisket, baked beans, chips and dip and more, outside in our backyard! BBQ is always fun but it’s most especially fun during a Super Bowl party. We’ll throw out some football trivia and reward the winner with a big slab of BBQ! And our group is pretty competitive, so we’ll also do a hotdog eating contest. This is so much fun and ummm… let’s just say filling!
A beef dish with two branded footballs in the background

Sounds like you’re pretty busy. How are you pulling off your party game plan in time for Sunday?
I want to plan a perfect party, but quickly and on budget. So I’m focusing on what’s most important—the Big Three: football, food, and fun! We did one quick run to Target (you guys, they seriously had every single thing I needed to put my party together, from plates, napkins, decorations and food to football gear… and of course, we grabbed some Cowboys stuff too, because we’re always Cowboys fans at heart). My husband would have loved to pick out a new TV too, but we’ll save that for another year. After that stock-up trip, we just had to pull the details together. Luckily, I have a great crew! Remember that you don’t have to do it all alone. You may be a jack-of-all-trades, but it never hurts to ask your friends and family to help. And if you’re really strapped for time, try a pot luck party!
Lynne's full spread, featuring decorations, food and football gear

Any other tips for our readers as they plan their own parties?
Don’t stress out. Just have FUN planning the party. Remember, as long as there’s football and food—your friends and family are sure to have fun. Cheers!
Glasses of champagne with football gear in the backgroundNeed a few last-minute touches, or haven’t even started planning your party yet? Target’s here for you—and we’ve got the whole nine yards, from TVs, coolers and tailgating gear to pizza, chips and Crock Pots, to help you pull off the perfect party.

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