That Time I Went To A Taping Of The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon

Something kind of miraculous occurred on Monday… I snagged two tickets to see the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon — for the next day.


I checked the site (ok, I was stalking the site) and all of a sudden there were tickets available for Tuesday. I know I said I was bad at the internet, but somehow it all worked out!

My heart was about to leap out of my chest while I entered my information and I’m pretty sure I didn’t breath until I received confirmation. As you can imagine, I was OUT OF MY MIND excited. Maybe not as excited as a having a baby, getting married, or seeing a positive pregnancy test — BUT CLOSE.

Of course, my excitement was briefly halted when Dan reminded me we had three kids who needed to be picked up at three separate locations while we were at the taping.


I wasn’t going to let that stop me though and it didn’t. Thankfully, my dad came to the rescue. I seriously OWE him and Wanda! After we figured out those logistics, we were good to go (thankfully, work was flexible for both of us!).

So, on Tuesday morning we dropped the kids off and headed out to Universal Orlando Resort for a day sitting around and being reminded that taking your kids to a theme park (and really on vacation in general) is HARD WORK (seriously, watching these families on vacation was exhausting).

I had heard conflicting reports on picking up tickets for the Tonight Show, and we didn’t know WHAT to believe. The reservations say that you need to be there between 10-2 to pick up your tickets — BUT that they always oversell and it’s first come, first serve. However, I knew from Twitter that they ended up having extra tickets for Monday’s show that they were just giving them away around 2:30. We also weren’t sure if the tickets were distributed based on when you arrived or if they were pre-assigned, so we took a casual approach and arrived early, but not TOO early.


This was the halfway point.

Apparently there were people who got there at 6:30 to get in line!  We got there around 9:45 and waited about an hour after they started distributing tickets. The girls in front were super nice and they nicely took pictures of us and didn’t try to run away with our phones.

Hello boob sweat.

Turns out the tickets were pre-assigned (which really sucked for the people who got there at 6:30) and once we grabbed out tickets from the REALLY AMAZINGLY NICE Tonight Show Staff – who have probably had to put with idiots for days – we just hung out in City Walk for a few hours.

We started at Starbucks, drinking our $4 water and bonded with a few other Jimmy Fallon fans. For lunch, we tried Red Oven Pizza Bakery which was surprisingly well priced AND very tasty.

Dan and I both ordered the Alla Benno — a red pizza with mozzarella, jalapenos, pineapple, and prosciutto. Honestly, we SHOULD have ordered just one pizza, but thinking “we’re at a theme park – that’s probably only enough to feed one person.” WRONG. It was good we stuff ourselves silly though (we both ate all but one piece) because we didn’t really eat dinner last night and we were in NO WAY hungry during the taping of the show.

After lunch, we walked around for a bit and checked out some of the City Walk stores.


So cute.

I haven’t been to Universal in YEARS (I think the last time I was there was when B was 1 — 7 years ago.) and it looks like they are giving a huge (and much needed face lift). Still there though, was Margaritaville. We figured — well, Jimmy Buffet IS a guest on the show tonight, it’s only fitting that we stop by and have a margarita or two.


Somehow the afternoon just flew by and before we knew it we were doing some last minute prep for the show.



The doors opened at 4 and the show pretty much started at 4:45 when the doors closed. They cautioned us to use the rest room before we went through security (otherwise, you’re peeing your pants) and to not be late. No pressure.

We quickly made it through security (again – nicest people) and hung out for 10 minutes or so before we went inside. No cameras were allowed (and they are SERIOUS about that rule – the girl in front of us snuck in a few – but she got caught) so this was the last picture I got…


As for the show itself — it was really a lot of fun. We had GREAT SEATS —  Row E, seats 36 and 37. I’d be surprised if you saw us on camera since we were kind of tucked away, but it was perfect viewing for the interviews and even the monologue.

Once we got seated, we watched clips of the show and then Seth Herzog came on and warmed us up for about 15 minutes. He then introduced The Roots (AH-MAZING) who then did a little song and dance for us.  They played a few songs and then introduced Higgins.

The crowd was giddy and high on laughter at that point so Jimmy’s introduction just crazy. He could not get us to stop clapping. He must feel like such a damn rock star after these shows!! Also, he’s even cuter in person (although, I’m not sure Dan would agree).

As for the show itself, it just flew by. It was really interesting to see what goes on when they go to break – mostly makeup touch ups and camera redirection. Jimmy talked to the audience a few times to let us know what was happening next – and while he was doing promos for different broadcasts. He did 6 of those and did not mess up once. Actually, for the entire show he only had to do one retake, which I thought was REALLY impressive (especially because he could NOT hold it together on back in the day on SNL). Overall, the vibe on set was fun but you can tell that Jimmy and the crew really bust their ass to get the show done.

My favorite part of the show was when they revealed this clip….

We were all in tears – and Kevin Hart really WAS terrified. Also, he was so adorable. I wanted to pick him up and put him in my pocket. He’s 5’1 – it could happen.

After the taping they let us out into the park (Universal – not Islands of Adventure, which would have been more exciting for me because… Harry Potter) and said we could stay and “play” until Jimmy Buffet took the stage (around 9) OR you know, go home. Which is what we did, mainly because Jimmy Buffet isn’t REALLY our thing and we were freaking EXHAUSTED! Plus, you know – we have those kids :) We were so tired, we haven’t actually watched to see if we were even on the show yet. I am assuming not, but honestly I was happy we got that seats over being on camera.

Overall, it was a really great experience and I’m glad I stalked for tickets for weeks on end like a crazy person. I also learned a valuable lesson…Sometimes acting like a crazy person gets you things you really want and a day off with work to hang out with your husband.

If YOU’RE reading this because you have tickets to see Jimmy — get ready to wait, but know that it will be worth it!! I can’t wait to go see Jimmy in NY… someday.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve done because you REALLY wanted something?


  1. says

    I watched your taping last night and kept trying to look for you! I definitely think you got the better show. BY FAR. That Kevin Hart interview was freakin’ great.

  2. Melissa says

    Ahhh so fun! Seems like an awesome day, and I’m so glad it worked out with all the logistics, too. I love it when a plan comes together :)

    • says

      Now that E is a year and I’m no longer tied to the pump during the day, I feel a little more spontaneous! Of course, I’ve paid for it the rest of the week :)

      We have been WAAAAAAY overdue for some quality time together. It was so nice to not have any distractions!


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