10. Raymond James Stadium
Home of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Coolest feature: Buccaneer Cove. It’s not only home to the famous 103ft pirate ship, but a fun outdoor area where you can watch the game while crushing pirate-themed concessions.
Fun fact: Raymond James is built on the former site of Al Lopez Field, the longtime spring training home of the Chicago White Sox and Cincinnati Reds.
Really all that’s missing from this place being the football embodiment of the Pirates of the Caribbean ride is a wench running away from Jameis Winston. Cannons fire every time the Bucs score (not as often these days). You get 65,000-person sing-alongs to “Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me).” The folks in charge of the in-game experience make sure you know you’re at a Bucs game. Combine that with the absolutely knockout Florida weather, and it really doesn’t matter that the team has been irrelevant for a decade-plus.
The seats here are big and comfortable, and because Ray-Jay was designed as a football stadium, the sightlines are good everywhere. Of course, someone thought it would be a great idea to leave most of the seats uncovered, so 1pm kickoffs before October will have you losing half your body weight in sweat before halftime. Which is fine, actually, because the tailgating here is surprisingly fantastic. Though the surrounding neighborhood is nothing to speak of, the sprawling parking lots, mild Decembers, and pleasant fans make it a fun place to party both before and after games. Even if you have absolutely no interest in pirates. -- MM