#17 of 31: M&T Bank Stadium
Baltimore, Maryland

December 8, 2013


M&T Bank Stadium

Ravnes FansBaltimore. Home of Edgar Allan Poe and the great NFL team named for his literary classic, The Raven. Tailgating with the Baltimore Ravens fans is a true urban experience. Down under the highway and around old deserted industrial buildings and broken, glass-strewn empty lots by the railroad tracks are parking lots where, on gameday, a sea of purple and black clad fans fill the air with laughter and music. Really loud music.

It’s Baltimore! Blue Crabs? The night before the game we contemplated having a couple of crab cakes instead of a cheeseburger, but tradition held and we searched for a sports bar. There are quite a number of sports-type bars around the stadium area. Miraculously, we found street parking for our 29’ camper close to Pickles. At under $5 a beer, this was a great place to quaff a few of the local brews. I counted 15 television screens where we could watch while drinking our beers... all with the Auburn/Missouri game on. With the final score Auburn 59 and Missouri 42 the game was fun to watch with the screaming fans at the bar(Zero defense).

Fried Pickles, Batimore MDThe warm cheeseburger came on a cold just-out-of-the-refrigerator bun.  Fortunately, the hot deep fat fried pickles dipped in a ranch dressing were great, especially with the locally brewed Red Cent Amber Ale. Go for the cheap beer and the fried pickles and try to avoid the pink and black plywood bathrooms and the burgers.




Gameday never quite dawned... the skies remained gray and ominous as storm clouds thickened above us. By 10:30, the predicted snow was falling in earnest, swirling, thick and wet. This was our first winter tailgating.

M&T Bank Stadium

Damn, these Ravens fans are hearty. Unfazed by the weather, they continued to dance, drink and party. They don’t even get under the overpass when the snow is falling! Strolling fans pass out jello shooters, the corn hole games continue, footballs fly through the snowy air, backs are slapped as stories are told... nobody seems to seek shelter. They did, at least, cover the grills, crab soups and seafood casseroles with foil to keep them warm and undiluted. Glorious seafood everywhere.

M&T Bank Stadium




M&T Bank StadiumThere were a few purple clad Vikings fans in the crowd, easy to pick out with the pigtails and horned helmets on their heads. Vikings purple is not nearly as dark, ominous or dominating as Ravens purple. (The Ravens were the first team in the NFL to go “dark” with their colors.)

M&T Bank StadiumOfficial parking for Maybe was going to be $175.00 in a lot some distance from the stadium. We drove around the area a few times and found an unofficial lot right under I-395 where they charged less and it was in the shadow of the stadium... if we could have seen it through the blinding white stuff.




Also, we had to be wary of carrying still and movie cameras along with flashes around in the snow. We loved the fans and food, but needed to protect our gear. Fans and photographers alike were both bundled up, so we did not get to hang out and hear stories and learn about traditions as much as we would have liked.

Just before game time, there are many time honored rabble-rousing toasting events performed by the fans of the various NFL teams. (See our videos of the Titans and the Patriots fans.)

The maraschino cherry toast in this parking lot is just plain weird and funny. A red maraschino cherry was passed out to each person in the group - they chanted some profound off-color words and in the blink of an eye swallowed the little red globes. Then, proud and satisfied they disappeared into the blizzard in the direction of the stadium.

Final: Baltimore 29, Minnesota 26

Note: All photos in the story are available to the fans for free in the galleries. Just click on enlargement and download.

Love your updates on your travels. Great Ravens video!! I really want to go there, even though it looked really cold and wet. You two did a great job getting a sense of the whole thing. You should sell it to a news program or something.


That was me with the Jambalaya! I think you really nailed the energy in Baltimore on game day. Makes me anxious to get back out there!

Liz T

You rock the purple hair, Peg! Love it!


Awesome presentation, you two! I have only been to one tailgate party in my life but now want to go to more! The atmosphere, the spirit, the food, just amazing! A huge community party! I have found in life that there has to be a reason for a party/celebration, something to wrap rhe event around. What better than the national American pastime!


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