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Bobby Dodd Stadium

Atlanta, GA

Home of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

4.0

3.7

Bobby Dodd Stadium (map it)
155 North Ave NW
Atlanta, GA 30332


Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets website

Bobby Dodd Stadium website

Year Opened: 1913

Capacity: 55,000

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Check the Ramblin' Wreck

Near the heart of college football’s biggest market in Atlanta stands Bobby Dodd Stadium. Opening its doors in September of 1913, Bobby Dodd is the oldest FBS stadium in the country and definitely has a classic college football feel to it. The historic stadium’s namesake served the university for 57 years as assistant coach, head coach and athletic director. Dodd most notably racked up 165 wins and a national championship during his coaching tenure from 1945-1966. The stadium was renamed for Dodd in 1988 and currently holds up to 55,000.

4.0

What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    4

The stadium offers a pretty wide variety of food options and even some choices available outside the gates on the street. For the best selection of specialty food, stick to the home side of the stadium. There you'll find several standard "Gridiron Grill" concessions, as well as delicious options like Sonny's Pit BBQ, The Nutty Bavarian and The Malt Shoppe. If your seats are on the visiting side, your options will be drastically reduced to Gridiron Grill or Domino's Pizza. Beer is not served at Bobby Dodd Stadium.

Pricing at the Gridiron Grill locations is surprisingly reasonable for a venue like this, with most items falling under $7. Specialty items vary in price, and I'd recommend you bring some cash, because not all of the lines take cards.

Atmosphere    4

Combine the oldest stadium in the FBS with a classic college football contender and you get exactly the atmosphere you would expect. Nostalgia hangs around the stadium and throughout campus for a Yellow Jackets game, which makes for a must-see college football atmosphere. It may not be as loud or large as some of its nearby SEC neighbors, but what Bobby Dodd lacks in scale, it makes up for in aura. Walking through campus, you'll see tailgates on frat row with sharply-dressed students grilling on their lawns before heading to the game. Outside the gates of the stadium, you'll catch a glimpse of the 1930 Ford Model A known as the "Ramblin' Wreck" as it drives through the festivities. It really feels like a trip back in time to the early days of college football.

Inside the stadium, the atmosphere you'll get offers even more of the unique classic college football pageantry. Student sections behind both ends zones erupt as the Ramblin' Wreck leads the Yellow Jackets onto the field. The Yellow Jacket Marching Band is one of the more impressive bands in college football and puts on a great show. Overall, the pageantry of the Georgia Tech football game day makes a Saturday at Bobby Dodd Stadium an essential trip for the college football fan.

The stadium itself is mostly bleacher seating, but it offers plenty of room to move around. The concourse on the home side is wide with plenty of room to move, but the visiting side is much more prone to bottlenecks. There really aren't bad seats in the house, and the upper deck is still relatively close to the field.

Neighborhood    5

It's hard to complain about a campus that is less than a mile from the big city attractions of Atlanta. The city, although close, doesn't at all take away from the college experience. The green areas of campus are just west of the stadium, and it makes for a beautiful walk to and from the game.

Georgia Tech is a beautiful campus just north of Atlanta and has every amenity you could ask for nearby. If you're looking for post-game (or pre-game) activities, there's more than enough to fill your Saturday. Just across the Interstate (less than 2 blocks away) is The Varsity. I would argue it's impossible to go to a college football game in the state of Georgia without making a stop here. The greasy burgers and chili dogs are a staple of the Georgia experience. If you head south for about three-quarters of a mile, you'll find some great places to load up on additional football or indulge in some Atlanta touristy activities. On Marietta Street you'll find Stats, a sports bar with more TVs than anyone could need on a football Saturday, and even a ticker with sports news running around the bar. Practically next door, you can eat a hearty German meal with a giant beer while you watch the big games of the day at Der Biergarten. If you're looking for tourist options, the Georgia Aquarium, World Of Coca-Cola and Olympic Park are all across the street from the food and bar options.

Fans    3

There are some pros and cons of the fan base at the Georgia Tech games. The fans are extremely welcoming, and at the same time, very passionate for their Yellow Jackets. On the other hand, seats seem to be available, and on my visit the stadium wasn't anywhere near full. The fans in attendance are passionate and will make a lot of noise and do everything they can to support their team. The student sections are large and involved, but not full. Empty seats are scattered throughout the stadium. On my specific visit in the fall of 2013, they were even undefeated facing a conference foe, which makes the number of empty seats a little more baffling. The weather did roll in during the second quarter, and the stadium emptied out even further. Overall, there's a great brand of fan at the games, but the atmosphere would only be enhanced if there were more of them.

Access    4

The stadium is located just west of I-75 about a mile north of downtown Atlanta. The southern city is known for a lot of traffic congestion, so plan to arrive early to account for difficulty navigating the interstates. However, once you exit the interstate onto campus, you'll find it incredibly easy to get around. There are a number of lots on and around campus, and there will be attendants to direct street parking. Rates vary, but $20 for decent parking is probably what a visiting fan should expect. Most of the tailgating takes place on campus, but you'll be able to set up in most of the lots if you get there early enough.

Walking to the stadium is easy enough, just follow the crowds. You can enter on three sides and from any gate. The home side is open and free-moving, but if you're on the visitors side or need to walk around the scoreboard end, expect walking traffic to get a little tighter as you make your way around.

Hotel accommodations are abundant in the area, with options both on campus and downtown. Expect to pay a little more than usual because the campus is so close to downtown Atlanta. If you're looking to take advantage of tourist options, the Hilton Garden Inn or Omni Hotel are located within easy walking distance of everything you need downtown, while still close to the stadium.

Return on Investment    4

Tickets for the game are very reasonable compared to normal college football prices. You can find tickets for under $50, and likely in the $25-$35 range for most games. Obviously, these prices can vary based on the game, but for a one-time visitor, it's more than worth the experience. A unique feature is an option to upgrade your ticket prior to gameday, a feature I wish more college stadiums would embrace. This definitely gives more options for good seats than you get at some other venues that sell everything good to the highest bidder.

Extras    4

The extras here really lie around the tradition and pageantry. When I choose to go to a college football game, it's pageantry that sets it apart from every other sport. Georgia Tech has more than enough of this to go around, and the age of the stadium definitely contributes to that classic feel. Again, this is a must stop on the bucket list of any true college football traveler.

Bobby Dodd is like Fenway Park

It's all irregular built over time. Very intimate. For night games the best seats are the upper east. You sit very high and close to the field giving you a great view of the action. Day games people prefer the lower west to avoid looking into the sun. Don't sit in the upper North, you might as well watch from Buckhead.

Have to disagree a little with poster on access and the Neighborhood.

Yes traffic is bad, but 50,000 people are going to the same spot and its nothing compared to getting into some small college town. It takes all day to get in and out of Athens. Getting off at North Avenue is always a terrible idea, even during a regular work day. Instead you can use 10th and 14th street exits, or if you are coming in from DeKalb, Gwinnett, or North Fulton, use the Bufford Highway connector. Best plan after the game is to really chill out for an hour at your car, open a coke and enjoy the victory as traffic breaks down.

As for the Neighborhood, sure its not a college town, but its a city! with great city things, like bars and restaurants. If you are really worried about traffic, get down early and park on Juniper street, about five blocks from campus. Its free on weekends (when there is no construction) and spend time hanging out at any number of the great bars, Vortex, Taco Mac, Hudson Grill, Cyprus Street, Charlie G's, Steam House, etc.

Also don't forget about all the new development on the Westside along Howell Mill. Lots of high end places like Miller Union, but also places like Six Feet Under.

Tech offers a unique experience, Its not an urban campus like Georgia State, Its a collegiate with plenty of green areas, especially after the renovations, but the city has grown out to it, so you can have your pick of traditional tailgate, or something a little more urbane.

by Frank | Nov 02, 2011 03:52 PM

A Hidden Gem

I appreciate such a fair review from a UGA alum. BDS@HGF is unique amongst big time college football venues.
It's a wonderful place to enjoy a fall afternoon with the kids.
It's also capable of being one of the most exciting venues around under the lights on a Saturday night with 55,000 packed in the seats with the skyline in the backdrop.

I'll agree to disagree with you on the traffic. I know you're just speaking in general terms of the closest interstate exit to the actual stadium, but I can name a dozen ways to get to campus, and not one of them involves getting off I-75/85 (the 16-lane combination of two of the NATION'S craziest highways) at North Avenue.

I've had a lot of colleagues and friends give a Tech game a try in the last year or two, and every one of them has been impressed with the campus in general. They had no idea there was so much green space. They had no idea that once on campus, you'd have no idea you were in the middle of an urban area. It really is incredible.

Finally, I agree on ticket prices. As an alum, I foolishly think with my heart, not my mind and pay a ton, a TON of money for season tickets and seat licensing fees. One can easily walk up and buy tickets on the day of the game for less than face value (UGA game, and top 10 opponents notwithstanding).

by NativeAtlantan | Nov 03, 2011 12:39 PM

RE: Frank & NativeAtlantan

Thanks to both of you guys for posting.

@Frank: On traffic, I should probably admit that as a Buckhead resident working in Sandy Springs, I'm spoiled by always driving against the flow of traffic and as such, the slightest bit of congestion looks like a clusterbomb to me.

You bring up a great point about GT being a nice midway b/t a college town feel (UGA) and an urban campus (GSU). Hadn't looked at it that way - only interpreted it based on what I'm used to, wide open spaces in Athens.

Finally, thanks for mentioning a few more neighborhood restaurants - Taco Mac and Vortex are always good picks, I should have thought of those myself.

@NativeAtlantan:You touch on a great thing about Bobby Dodd that I only alluded to - the family-friendliness. I saw way more little tykes-to-elementary age here than ever I did at Sanford, and every single one seemed to be having a great time. I could totally see myself taking (future) children there, though not so much to my alma mater.

by jmccurdy | Nov 24, 2011 09:26 AM

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Crowd Reviews

Bobby Dodd Stadium, Home of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Total Score: 3.57

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 3
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 4

Bobby Dodd Stadium is the longtime home of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. The man for whom the stadium is named is a Hall of Fame player and coach who lost but one game as quarterback of the Tennessee Volunteers and then led Georgia Tech to an overwhelmingly winning record over 32 seasons as head coach, including a 9-4 record in bowl games.

The resume gets longer from there, with more than 25 years as Tech's athletic director and general recognition as a hard-nosed and honorable competitor, so it's no surprise he's got not only brick-and-mortar named after him, but also a Coach of the Year Award.

Recently, the field's been home to the exciting triple-option offense of head coach Paul Johnson and a consistently solid product. I must admit, as I age, I more and more frequently find myself drawn into their games and rooting on their side - even if I am a graduate of the University of Georgia.

Nice stadium...

Total Score: 2.57

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 2
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 1
  • Access: 2
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 3

but the fans could get into the game a bit more. There is a major difference between seeing a game here and at the University of Georgia.

GT

Total Score: 4.00

  • Food & Beverage: 5
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 3
  • Fans: 3
  • Access: 5
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 2

Great staduim to watch GREAT football in a close setting. You can see top-notch teams in great environment.
Food is awesome and reasonably priced! GT knows how to make the fan feel warm with their hospitality from the time they enter until the time they leave.
Food varieties make me want to try something new each time I attend.

An Underrated Gem

Total Score: 4.14

  • Food & Beverage: 5
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 3
  • Fans: 5
  • Access: 2
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 4

The oldest venue in the FBS, there is a lot of history at Bobby Dodd Stadium. It isn't the largest by any accounts, but what it has serves the place well. And Georgia Tech is pretty much the afterthought in Georgia with the Bulldogs an hour away from Atlanta. It is a great place to watch the game and you do feel close to the action, regardless of where you sit.

Food & Beverage: Great variety of sweets (from funnel cakes to cotton candy to the sweet smell of pecans), and salts (pizza, nachos, dogs, and now a Mexican stand). The food overall is great.

Atmosphere: While Georgia Tech will never win out the entire state of Georgia, there is a top notch atmosphere with the band playing, the Ramblin Wreck, and the area itself is just a fun place on gameday. Great college feel to it.

Neighborhood: Around you have some good spots, with the Varsity an Interstate crossing away. Not too bad, but nothing really to get excited about as most of the campus buildings are around the stadium.

Fans: They are intense during the games I've been there and they cheer from the coin flip to the very end. And they have one large passion: hating UGA.

Access: While you can see it off of I-75/85, trying to park in or around campus is a pain. When you do park, it is a healthy distance away.

ROI: Georgia Tech's tickets are relatively cheap to get, regardless of who comes in save for Georgia. Any spot in the stadium is a good view and if you are upper level endzone, you have a great scenic skyline view of Atlanta. Scoreboard has been upgraded and the place is an underrated gem.

Extras: The place is nice overall and as I mentioned earlier, the sightlines are splendid all over as you really don't miss anything as well as you are very close to the action as well as it is a nice place to take in a football game.

Overall, while it doesn't have the same feel as larger stadiums (GT holds a little over 50,000) you still get a great college football experience and it is a must do for any college football fan.

Great Atlanta Venue

Total Score: 4.14

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 3
  • Access: 5
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 4

I've been to a number of GT games. I love the venue with the skyscrapers in the background. The crowd can be a bit game at tame relative to peer universities. Still there are few venues with this level of charm

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Local Food & Drink

Varsity  (map it!)

61 North Avenue Northwest

Atlanta, GA 30308

(404) 881-1706

http://www.thevarsity.com/

Mary Mac's Tea Room  (map it!)

224 Ponce de Leon Ave

Atlanta, GA 30308

(404) 876-1800

http://www.marymacs.com/

Spoon  (map it!)

768 Marietta St

Atlanta, GA 30318

(404) 522-5655

http://spoonatlanta.com/westside/main.php

Der Biergarten  (map it!)

300 Marietta St NW

Atlanta, GA 30313

(404) 521-2728

http://www.derbiergarten.com

Stats  (map it!)

300 Marietta St NW

Atlanta, GA 30313

(404) 885-1472

http://www.statsatl.com

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