Tailgating at the Florida-Georgia game used to mean driving to a parking lot or having a space at RV City.
Now you can get your tailgate delivered.
Party Shack, a Jacksonville company launched last year by father-and-son team Joe and Bobby Bowers, rents 8-by-17-foot portable structures that began life as storage pods and are now upscale, climate-controlled units that can be trucked to sites and set up within an hour.
For football games, a Party Shack with the outside awning extended and the ladder attached for rooftop access fits in two regulation parking spaces.
Thanks to the decorative talents of Joe Bowers’ wife, Julie, the interior contains granite counter tops, a sink, cabinets and a wood floor. Flat-screen TVs inside and out come with the unit, as does furniture for the interior, exterior and the roof. It’s air-conditioned (or heated) and can accommodate up to 40 guests when taking the inside, the roof and the awning space into account.
They even supply the cornhole boards and bags.
It’s too late to rent one for Saturday’s game, but the Georgia Bulldog club rented five units to be placed at Met Park for its pre- and post-game festivities. The Party Shack has had eight units in an area between TIAA Bank Field and Veterans Memorial Arena for Jaguars games, for rent by corporations and individuals. There are also unreserved units available for $89.95 admission on Jaguars game days, which includes food and beer or wine.
The price to rent one Party Shack on a corporate or private basis is that individual rate times 40, or a bit more than $3,500.
Joe Bowers, who has worked in the moving, storage and packing industry in the past, got the idea when driving from Jacksonville to Norman, Okla., for two years when his youngest son, Brett, played for the Oklahoma Sooners from 2006 to 2008.
“We’d load up the RV, attach a Hummer to the back and drive to Norman six or seven weekends a year,” he said. “I started wondering if there was a better way to tailgate at a football game.”
It’s a family business. In addition to his sons and wife, Bowers’ daughter, Tricia Wellington, is involved.
Joe Bowers has 10 units currently on hand but has enough orders to plan on converting 48 more. Football isn’t the only sport or activity where a Party Shack might be a good idea. Bowers said NASCAR races, concerts and even birthday parties are in play.
He said he’s in communication with seven NFL football teams about creating the same kind of Party Shack Village that he’s set up for Jaguars games — including cold-weather teams such as Minnesota, Buffalo and Green Bay.
He’s also turned the marketing over to pros: Andrew Crane has created a slick website; and Airstream Ventures is the sales arm of the business.
“Joe can create these villages almost anywhere,” said Airstream CEO Alan Verlander. “We’re looking at the Beach Musical Festival, Christmas parties … almost any situation where people are gathering. The Jaguars proved it works when they let us set up the Party Shack Village but their organization is visionary. They’re always thinking outside the box.”
Original Article Can Be Found at Jacksonville.com.