Parents put on parking lot party

Matt Starker

The site was a parking lot at Hofstra University and the action was a woman revving a motorized blender as she made a margarita. While the University’s men’s lacrosse team was handing the No. 11 Hofstra Pride a big loss, the parents were working just as hard as the players.

These parents weren’t on the field, but in the parking lot. They had arranged to put on a world-class tailgate.

Already know as one of the top tailgating teams in the country, according to, the Wildcat parents were ready to stake a claim to the position of first place.

“Hofstra was something special; it was the last time on the Island for our seniors and more importantly for their parents,” senior parent Fran Fanelli said. “We wanted to go out with a bang.”

A bang they did, with a five-piece band, lobster tails, lasagna, penne vodka, ribs, London broil, lamb, house-specialty steak on toast and plenty of beverages. This parking lot turned into a five-star restaurant.

A usual after-game reception consists of hamburger and hot dogs, like any traditional barbecue.

However, this event went above and beyond, turning a huge win into an enormous celebration.

“Win, lose or draw, for the parents, it’s just a chance to hang out with our kids after the game,” Fanelli said.

When the coach saw his players were fed well and that the tailgate had no end in sight, he called his players to get onto the bus and begin their trip home.

Each player said their last good-byes, usually a big hug included for their mothers, and boarded the bus.

However, for the parents the night was just beginning. They sent their children off while the band played the Villanova Fight Song, and they all reached for another glass of their drink of choice. The tailgate went on until 12:30 a.m., when the few parents who didn’t get a hotel room needed to finally hit the road.

“What a night,” Fanelli said.