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Gameday’s Best Tailgate
One Person’s Idea Becomes Treasured Gameday Tradition

Badger Bash is one of the longest-standing and most loved Wisconsin Union traditions, drawing in Badger fans (and sometimes even our opponents’ fans) from all over. It happens on the day of every home football Badger game at Union South for the 2 ½ hours before the game kicks off. It all began when Union South opened in 1971, when then-Assistant Wisconsin Union Director Corky Sischo noticed how many people stopped at Union South for food and drinks before Badger football games.

Sischo connected with then-University of Wisconsin-Madison Marching Band Director Mike Leckrone to present his thoughts, and the two of them teamed up to found Badger Bash in 1972. Although Badger Bash began as a modest way to warm up the band and invite fans to celebrate at Union South, it has quickly transformed into a sensational event featuring food, live music and a whole lot of school spirit.

Today, at Badger Bashes, guests can enjoy performances by the UW Marching Band and Spirit Squad, an appearance by Bucky, live music, on-site food and beverage options, as well as local celebrity emcees. Badger Bash is the only pre-game tailgate featuring a performance of the full UW Marching Band under the direction of the band director. Guests are also invited to stay at Union South to watch the game on the Union’s big screen. Learn more at