FAU Stadium - Florida Atlantic Owls
Photos by Chris Green, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 4.14
FAU Stadium 777 Glades Rd Boca Raton, FL 33431
Flying High in Boca Raton
While Florida Atlantic University may be overlooked among FBS football schools, the stadium in which they play certainly doesn’t mirror the program’s easy to miss appearance. While most people pass FAU football off as an also-played program, the team has three conference titles and two bowl wins over the past five seasons. Do not let the second-tier status deter you from venturing to Palm Beach County for a quality afternoon of college football. FAU Stadium is beautiful, clean, impressive, comfortable, and family friendly in all respects, while remaining easy to access from major highways.
Food & Beverage 4
The food options at FAU Stadium are actually quite impressive, and the prices are not that high compared to most major sporting events. A burger, soda, and fries will cost less than $15, which in stadium terms is a steal, especially at a televised bowl game.
What sets FAU Stadium apart is the wonderful bar that is on the main concourse that makes up the Delray Hyundai Deck. This full-service bar features TV screens, a nice aesthetic, and other smaller food vendors next to it that make it easy to grab a beer, an arepa, and some fries, all in one area. Another plus is the convenience of the concessions locations on the lower levels – you never have to walk too far to find somewhere to grab food, which can be an issue at other locations.
The other side of FAU Stadium, opposite the party deck, features a full-service Subway location, complete with restaurant-style seating inside an air-conditioned storefront. In addition, last year saw the addition of a Chick-fil-A stand on the main concourse of the sun deck, as well as another Subway stand.
This stadium is one that many college programs wish they had on their own campus – it boasts a solid seating capacity, good sightlines from various seats, a multi-level tower for suites and VIP boxes, and a great on-campus location. The games, while popular of late, aren’t always 100% full on game day, however.
That doesn’t take away from the beauty of the stadium though. The Atlantic Ocean is visible from the upper levels and suite boxes on the west side of the stadium. The warm ocean breeze is also there to greet fans all game long, and swaying palm trees make for one great backdrop in the southern end zone.
Boca Raton is a beautiful part of Palm Beach County. In addition, FAU’s campus is clean, South Florida-esque in appearance, and overall visually appealing. Not far from campus is a beautiful strip mall that plays host to a PF Chang’s, J. Alexander’s, Shake Shack, Whole Foods, Barnes & Noble, and more.
Equidistant to the east of campus is the Atlantic Ocean. There, you can find a beautiful beach, as well as the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center, where visitors can get a look at some of coastal Florida’s natural habitats and inhabitants, thanks to boardwalks through the mangroves and natural butterfly gardens. Near the beach hotels are easy to find; the official hotel of the most recent game was the Wyndham Boca Raton, just on the other side of I-95 from Florida Atlantic University’s campus. Another close place to stay is Renaissance Boca Raton right next door.
What Boca Raton lacks in nightlife more commonly found in Miami and Fort Lauderdale, the area more than makes up for in relaxation. In addition, Palm Beach International Airport isn’t far from Boca Raton, with airports in Fort Lauderdale and Miami less than an hour away as well.
The fans have begun to show up in numbers to FAU games in the last few years. Success brings attendance in South Florida, and the Owls are enjoying a run of bowl-eligible seasons with bright local talent on the field. Among the most family-friendly college fans in Florida, FAU features probably what is quietly becoming a great fan base in Florida. While some may still show up late to the game itself, the students nonetheless show up to support their Owls. Tailgating is also growing in the various parking lots around the stadium, making for a better college game day experience.
Getting to FAU Stadium is easy to do – unlike several sports teams and colleges where the campus stadiums are miles away from the highway exits, FAU Stadium is quite literally bordered by I-95 in Boca Raton. Also, just a few miles west is the Florida Turnpike.
Once off the exit from I-95, the FAU campus is immediately visible. Parking is quite plentiful, and even if you get stuck in a lot or garage that is a little further from FAU Stadium, the walk is not very far and is through a beautiful campus. Parking on site is $20 per car.
Return on Investment 4
FAU tickets aren’t generally massively expensive, ranging from $15 to $100. Food prices won’t burn your wallet into ash either. With that said, a trip to an FAU game provides a great return on investment, especially when considering you are getting to see Conference USA college football at a fraction of the price of other teams in the country. With the increased fan presence and the pre-game tailgating that has grown, you really do get the full college experience at FAU Stadium when you purchase a ticket for the Owls.
FAU football features plenty of in-game entertainment such as t-shirt tosses and game hosts playing trivia with fans. Another neat aspect is the fan experience outside – multiple booths are set up on the outside concourse, as well as the concert stage that gets set up on the field between the stadium and the parking garage, making for a wonderful family-oriented fan experience before the game.
The fan zones outside are chock-full of freebies. From giveaways to concerts, fans can get tons of swag from the various booths outside FAU Stadium. Another bonus is the addition of charging stations – FAU Stadium recently added mobile charging stations to recharge your phone or tablet at the game, making it very convenient to get a power boost for your device. Fans can also relax under the shade of the palm trees on beach lounge chairs before, during, or after the games.
Finally, the fans can get a chance to meet one of the most distinct mascots in college football, Owlsley the Owl. A giant owl that roams the sidelines, fans always look to get a photo with FAU’s signature mascot.
FAU football delivers a quality stadium experience for FBS college football at an affordable price in one of the nicest neighborhoods South Florida has to offer. The view is second to none, the fans are kind, and the pre-game atmosphere is surprisingly pleasant. For sure, FAU is as good of an experience as its bigger neighbors to the south, and it can only continue to go up from here.