With COVID-19 restrictions, some Chiefs fans recreating tailgating experience at home

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — With restrictions on attendance, the tailgating experience at Arrowhead Stadium might be lacking that oomph-factor it’s had a past home-openers.

That’s not stopping some Kansas City Chiefs fans from trying to recreate the eating experience at home.

A Chiefs season-ticket holder since the 1990s, Frank Audano of Olathe says he’s just as committed to the tailgate.

Take, for example, his passion for appetizers. Namely, pig poppers.

“Then I’ll take a big package of bacon, cut it in half…wrap it around that sausage and create a cone,” Audano said, working his assembly line.

“Then in the cone I’ll fill it with cream cheese, crushed pineapple and maybe a little jalapeno if I can,” Audano said.

“We’ve always tried to attend a couple of games but I think with the COVID in play, I think a lot of people are looking at this space as a safer venue,” Audano said.

Richard Fergola has heard the same thing from customers. He sells all kinds of set-ups at KC Grilling Company. In fact, he’s sold a record-setting number at his store since the start of the pandemic

They range from portable to not.

“These are big time smokers right here. I actually cook on this guy in competition,” Fergolas said pointing to some of his stock.

“I think anybody that’s in the barbeque or outdoor cooking business has definitely seen a rise in traffic and sales simply because more people are at home cooking,” Fergolas said.

At the Audano household, Frank said he is one of the people who has made regular visits to the grilling store to hone his craft.

But he also says that he can’t lie to himself.

“No this is never the same. This doesn’t hold anything compared to being at Arrowhead,” Audano said.

“The only thing that this does is it gives me that extra venue to make me feel like i am a part of it,” Audano said.

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