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First and goal, and pass the wings, please

Bartender Nicole Brajer prepares drinks for the patrons

Bartender Nicole Brajer prepares drinks for the patrons with the flat-screen television by the bar area behind her showing MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL at Social Sports Kitchen, a sports bar in Uniondale. (September 27, 2010) Photo Credit: Photo by Uli Seit

It's a Monday night - are you going to be watching football? Sure, you can catch the game at home on television . . . but plenty of restaurants and sports bars are getting into the game, packing NFL fans (and more casual observers) in for an evening of junk food and football - along with an often-spirited crowd to cheer along with.

Some popular spots:

Buffalo Wild Wings

1112 Deer Park Ave., North Babylon

INFO 631-242-9464,

With 2,838,356 Facebook "likes" (and counting), this national chain obviously has a big following, yet its North Babylon location feels like a neighborhood hangout. On Monday nights, fans of all ages pack the spacious restaurant, noshing on what else but chicken wings served with a choice of 14 different sauces. There are 40 TVs that show the game. Families with kids are welcome in the dining area - just be prepared for the often deafening noise after key plays. 

Social Sports Kitchen 

1002 Hempstead Tpke., Uniondale, 516-489-8080,

Former "J-E-T-S" player Wayne Chrebet owns this restaurant and bar, just off-campus from his alma mater, Hofstra University. Virtually every inch of wall space is covered with the faces and forms of top athletes, and there are 18 televisions. The Monday night football crowd is mostly a college-age set. Side note: "Top Chef" alum Danny Gagnon mans the kitchen, serving creative takes on standard fare: "potato skin" spring rolls, cereal-crusted chicken strips and homemade Twinkies. 

Miller's Ale House

1800 The Arches Circle, Deer Park, 631-667-0228,

Much like its Levittown location, the Deer Park branch of Miller's is swamped almost every night with a crowd that comes to eat, drink and socialize in the roomy, but noisy space. On Monday, Gridiron fans fill almost every seat in the dining and pub room (the pool tables are even covered over to stand in as makeshift tables). But plenty of other patrons confess they're not there entirely for the football. "I root for the Cowboys . . . but a lot of times I don't even watch," says Mark Aaron, 36, of Commack. "If I meet a girl, that's all I care about."

Napper Tandy's

15 E. Main St, Smithtown, 631-360-0606,

A dedicated crowd of die-hard regulars head to Napper Tandy's for Monday night football - and they stick around until the final whistle. Games are screened on 32 high-def TVs - including a massive floor-to-ceiling screen on the back wall. Munchies include nachos, sliders and wings.


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