Best FSU Tailgating Spots in Tallahassee

February 5, 2024 Parents, Students

In the world of sports, tailgating is one of the most beloved American traditions. FSUPD defines a tailgate as a gathering that occurs in designated parking areas surrounding the university’s football stadium before and after scheduled home games. It’s essentially the pre-party before the main event. While the specific origins of tailgating remain up for debate, it’s considered one of the most popular social gatherings in sports!

During college football season, students, parents, and locals all gather to enjoy a pre-game meal, throw back some drinks, and show off their team spirit! At most tailgates you’ll find essential items like grills, coolers filled with beer, lounge chairs, and tents displaying their favorite team’s banner.

Tailgating is especially important in the heart of Tallahassee. Whether you’re a student, alumni, or just a resident wanting to cheer on your local college football team, it’s important to have the backstory on what makes FSU tailgates the best in the nation. We’ve provided you with some Garnet & Gold lore, along with a list of some of the best places to tailgate on and off-campus around Tally. Are you ready for the next FSU gameday?

Know Before You Go – Garnet & Gold Lore

Part of what makes FSU football so great is the amount of heritage and care that’s gone into creating the fanfare of Tally’s football lore. If you’re preparing for the 2024 college football season in Tallahassee, make sure you’re aware on all the Seminoles’ rituals:

Doak Campbell Stadium

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The Doak S. Campbell Stadium, or the “Doak” is the home stadium for the FSU Seminoles. The massive field holds over 80,000 guests and is considered one of the largest brick structures in the world! This is the central meeting place after a tailgate, where excited FSU fans pile into Doak to cheer on the ‘Noles for the next 3.5 hours of football. Make sure to check out the bronze Unconquered statute and the spear lighting ceremony before the game starts!

FSU and the Seminole Tribe

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When you go to an FSU game, you’ll see depictions of the Seminole tribe. Unlike other universities, FSU doesn’t have a mascot. Instead, the university has honored the Seminole Tribe of Florida for over 70 years by displaying the community’s historic symbol. Make sure you’re geared up to match the historic public declaration in support of FSU’s team.

Osceola & Renegade

Osceola & Renegade










With the support of the Seminole Tribe, FSU has maintained the tradition of Osceola and Renegade at their home matches. Just before an FSU football game starts, “Osceola” leads the team onto the field while riding the spotted horse, Renegade. The dynamic duo heads to the 50-yard line, where Renegade rears up for Osceola to throw the flaming spear into the turf. This is the tell-tale sign that the FSU game is about to begin!

Friday Night Block Party

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Every Friday night before an FSU home football game, thousands of Seminoles fans head to CollegeTown for the official tailgate event for FSU! The event features live music, onsite vendors, and special appearances! This is the perfect event to check out before a Saturday home match.

Marching Chiefs

The official soundtrack of FSU football is provided each gameday by the Marching Chiefs. Unbelievably, there are more than 400 FSU students who make up the university’s marching band! This creates a powerful sound effect that is guaranteed to get fans up on their feet and cheering throughout the game!

FSU Warchant

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Dating back to the 60’s the Marching Chiefs would play a cheer called “Massacre.” Fast forward several decades to the 80’s, where students began joining in on the “war chant,” which turned into an undying school tradition! Whenever you’re at an FSU game and you start hearing the war chant, make sure to join in! And don’t forget to add the fan-favorite Tomahawk Chop!

Garnet & Gold

The official colors of the FSU football team are garnet and gold! Each game day, you’ll be surrounded by a sea of fans donning their best reds and golds to support the Noles. There’s even a tradition of two FSU students getting decked out in garnet and gold glitter from head to toe—it’s a sight you won’t want to miss! Also make sure to check out FSU’s Garnet & Gold game, the university’s annual Spring football event.

Best Places to Tailgate for FSU Students

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The most optimal tailgating spots are reserved for Booster members, with prices ranging from $300 to $6,000 for eligible parking spots directly next to Doak. We understand that this can be pricey and limited for many students and football lovers. So, what are the tailgating option for Seminoles fans who aren’t considered Boosters?

Check out some of our favorite tailgating spots for FSU fans:

  • Coca-Cola Tailgate Zone – A great spot for tailgating is the Coca-Cola Tailgate Zone. The space is open four hours before every home game and is located right next to Doak stadium along the Legacy Walk. Those interested in tailgating can purchase tickets here for groups of up to 8 guests. Ticket holders of the pre-game tailgate experience can indulge in food, drinks, games, and more!
  • Main Campus Intramural Field – If you want a traditional tailgating experience, head to the intramural field on FSU’s main campus. The space spans 13 acres, so you’ll see plenty of students and fans getting hyped before game time. It’s on a first-come, first-serve basis, so make sure to get there early! These spots fill up quick since you’re just a quick 10-minute walk from the stadium!
  • Garnet & Gold Tailgate in Union Plaza – The Student Affairs Student Engagement hosts a tailgating event before (most!) home games geared specifically for FSU students! This is a tradition that’s been going on since 2007, giving students the opportunity to participate in game day activities while limiting high-risk behavior. This is an alcohol and tobacco-free event, so just show up in your best garnet and gold attire and prepare for a day full of football fun! The event begins 3 hours before kick off and ends an hour before the game starts.
  • The Tucker Civic Center – Less than a mile from Doak, the “Tuck” is another great option for tailgating. The civic center allows gameday goers to both park and tailgate in their space. And the best part? It’s only $10! The space also allows RV parking for a higher rate.
  • Railroad Art DistrictWhy not start out gameday with a creative flair? Head down to Tally’s Historic Railroad Square or Art District, with tons of shops and food spots to enjoy before you head over to Doak. If you’re lucky, you may even catch the district during their First Friday Festival, with live music, open galleries, and tons of food. Before supporting your favorite football team, make sure you’re also supporting all of Tally’s creative local micro-businesses!
  • Langford Green ParkLooking for some tailgating fun for the whole family? Head over to Langford Green for FSU’s Ford Fan Fest! They’ve got games, food trucks, inflatables, and giveaways! The fan fest starts four hours before game time, so there’s plenty of time to get into the Garnet & Gold spirit!
  • Madison Social – If you’re looking for a spot off-campus to prep for an FSU home game, head to Madison Social. Known as one of Tally’s favorite student bars, MadSo will get your game day started right with delicious food, cold beer, and even fun FSU gear to represent the Noles! They’ll also show the FSU game on their TV screens, so it’s an excellent choice if you don’t have tickets into the game.
  • Potbelly’s – Another great off-campus spot is Potbelly’s! Since 1994, the downtown Tally spot has put on their “World Famous” Friday Happy Hours along with hosting tailgate parties for FSU games. They consider themselves more of a live music venue than a college bar, but that doesn’t mean they won’t go all out for the Noles’ home games! On Saturday Gamedays, Potbelly’s features live music in The Painted Lady and displays the football game on their many TV screens, including the 300” Jumbotron in The Garden!

Still not sure what to get up to before an FSU football game? Check out all our favorite restaurants and happy hour specials around Tally. You’re bound to find a great local spot to hangout and watch the game!

Tips For FSU Gameday

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Now that you know all the best tailgating spots around Tally, make sure to follow these tips to ensure a safe and exciting FSU game day experience:

Handicap access

Doak has handicap access available at all gates. On a game-by-game basis, there are also a limited number of wheelchair and handicap parking spots available.

fsu football disabled parking







Disabled parking

FSU fans who need disabled parked must apply for the parking program for all home games. You can find disabled parking in the Pensacola Street Garage, along with complimentary shuttle buses that will take you to and from the stadium! Shuttles begin running 2 hours prior to the game’s kickoff. Find out more about applying here.


FSU regulations state they do not support nor condemn those of legal drinking age from drinking at tailgate events. However, there is a strict no drinking policy for any student or fan under 21. Once in the stadium, fans can purchase alcoholic beverages from Doak’s concession stands and take them back to their seat in the stadium. Beer sales are cut off in the main stands at the beginning of the 4th quarter.

Bag Policy

florida state football bag policy






Before going into Doak, make sure what you’re carrying is allowed into the stadium. Fans are limited to one small clutch no bigger than 4.5” x 6.5” or a clear, plastic bag no bigger than 12” x 6’ x 12” inside the stadium; attempting to bring a bag that is not clear or is bigger than the allotted size will not be allowed inside Doak.

Cooling Stations

In the sunshine state, it’s important for students and gameday goers to have a spot to cool off. FSU provides cooling stations in the main concourse outside of sections 28 and 118.

Parking at Tailgates

If you’re planning to park and tailgate for an FSU home game, it’s important that you abide by the regulations set out by FSUPD. Some of the parking rules include:

  • One vehicle per parking spot;
  • No parking on sidewalks or in pedestrian walkways;
  • Unless authorized, no ATVs, golf carts, or mopeds permitted; and
  • Any tents set up at a tailgate parking spot can be no bigger than 12ft by 12ft.

Refer to FSU’s Football Game Day Parking Map to find an appropriate parking spot.

Rules of an FSU Tailgate

Once you’ve got the parking spot secured and the tent set up, all that’s left is to enjoy the pre-game excitement! Make sure you’re following all of FSU’s rules, which addresses the following prohibited acts at a designated tailgate location:

  • No throwing frisbees or balls;
  • No skateboarding or bike tricks;
  • No live bands or distracting loud music; and
  • No soliciting.

Also make sure that you don’t have any of the following prohibited items on you before entering an FSU tailgate or football game:

  • Alcohol or controlled substances;
  • Weapons or explosives;
  • Umbrellas;
  • Outside food or beverages;
  • Backpacks;
  • Coolers;
  • Artificial noisemakers;
  • Video equipment or tape recorders;
  • Laptops;
  • Lasers;
  • Pets;
  • Strollers;
  • Skateboards, hoverboards, or roller skates;
  • Beach balls or airborne objects; and
  • Non-clear bags.

Keep in mind that any FSU ticket holder is subjected to a search before entering Doak. If you get caught with any of the prohibited items, you could be denied entry into the game. We want to make sure all FSU fans are prepared to enter and cheer on the Noles!

SeminoleSAFE Mobile App

Stay up to date on everything an FSU fan needs to know on the informative mobile app’s Game Day Guide!


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The official Fan Experience Partner for FSU! The company aims to redefine home games by offering full tailgate services to ignite enthusiastic fans and drive attendance to FSU home games.

Curious about the rest of Tally’s exciting events and culture? Head over to our main page to find out all about the best food, nightlife, and events happening around Tallahassee.

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