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Graphic art for Gator Stomp Pub Crawl Guide
20 Apr 2022
College Life
Posted by
Alyssa Hockensmith

Gator Stompin' - A Guide

Graduation Weekend at the University of Florida is famous for the annual Gator Stompin' - said to be the largest pub crawl in the world. The event takes place at the end of the spring semester every year, just prior to graduation. The 2023 graduation weekend, May 5-7, 2023, is the time to celebrate graduation with a time-honored tradition: Gator Stompin'! Tickets typically go on sale just weeks before graduation so be sure to follow the organizers on Facebook


For over 30 years, thousands of students, Gainesville residents and first-time visitors alike have participated in what the Gator Stompin' event website describes as the "World's Largest Pub Crawl." If you're still on the fence about attending or planning to but don't know where to start, follow this guide to maximize your experience at Gator Stompin' this year.


Buy Tickets

Tickets go sale at the Gator Stompin' event website, and prices are at an all-time low in the beginning. As the event gets closer, prices are set to increase. According to the website's Frequently Asked Questions, those who run the event strongly suggest buying tickets early because they "believe strongly in rewarding those who support [their] event by buying their ticket early, and that's the reason that the current prices are so low...for now."


With your ticket, you get 10 tokens to use in participating locations for specific beverage and food options as well as a t-shirt that acts as free admission to those locations. Unfortunately, a full list of which locations are participating in the event will not be made available until closer to the event date, but once it is, be sure to take a look to see what they're offering.


The event's social media (Facebook and Instagram) will have information for you to pick up your tokens and t-shirt for the event.  


Choose Your Venues

As mentioned previously, a full list of venues won't be available until closer to the event, but use this time to explore all that Gainesville nightlife has to offer and go to places you've never been before or have always wanted to try but didn't want to pay the cover. A pub crawl is a great chance to experience the unfamiliar and to try new things.


However, each place can't have all things, so if you have specific dietary requirements or you only drink liquor as opposed to beer and wine, you'll want to make sure you plan to go to places where you can fully participate.


Don't just spend all your time in the same places you go to on a typical night out. While those places can be fun and are worth the time, you should use this chance to experience something new. And, don't spend all your tokens in one place; make sure you have enough to make the experience last throughout the night.


Make a Plan

In 2019, the last year the event was held, the event boasted over 3500 participants at over 20 different locations along the stretch from Midtown to Downtown, so you will need to plan accordingly. Grab a group of friends or family members to go with you and enjoy the nightlife Gainesville has to offer as you make your way through several bars, pubs, and restaurants that are on tap to participate this year!


Wear comfortable shoes that you can walk in, and keep in mind that you'll be wearing a t-shirt, so high-fashion isn't a top priority. Sure, you can dress it up however you'd like, but I wouldn't don your favorite heels or dress shoes. Remember, it's a pub crawl, after all.


At the end of the night, you'll want to make sure you have a plan for getting home safely. Make a plan to have a designated driver, to take advantage of the bus system, or to have an account with Uber or Lyft if you plan on drinking throughout the night. Remember, it's supposed to be fun, but having a plan in advance for these types of logistical things will help you relax and enjoy the night free of the worries of how you're getting home.


Know Before You Go

Some of the bars, restaurants and clubs may have COVID-19 protocols in place for the event, so be sure to check those details once the list of participating venues is made public. It is also suggested that you have an idea of your path that you and your friends will take on the night. Sure, it's cool to just go with the flow and hit up places you see along the way, but you may want to have designated meeting places in case your group splits up or have a set start and end point to maximize your time.


Gator Stompin' is a bucket-list-level event for any Gainsvillian or Gator to experience at least once in their life. Alumni rave about this event and the celebration of the end of their time in the Swamp. With thousands of people walking along 2nd Ave. from Midtown to Downtown, it can feel like you're part of something bigger -- something electric -- just like when you're at a football game or sitting in the stands for commencement. It's been a tough few years, and you deserve the chance to let loose, celebrate the end of the year, and make lasting memories with your friends and family.


So this graduation weekend, eat, drink and most importantly, stomp your way through Gainesville's nightlife at Gator Stompin' 2023. You'll be creating memories and having an experience you will never replicate again.

image of a beer