Seminole Tribe honors ‘Osceola and Renegade’ at parade, rodeo

Osceola and Renegade, the legendary and deeply beloved symbols of Florida State football, were recently honored by the Seminole Tribe of Florida as the grand marshals of a parade to kick off the 74th Annual Brighton Field Days Festival and Rodeo.

FSU graduate Allen Durham (B.S. ’93), the Tallahassee businessman who oversees the Osceola and Renegade program, along with six members of the 12-member Osceola and Renegade team — including student Drake Anderson, who currently portrays Osceola — traveled to the tribe’s Brighton Indian Reservation for the parade, which took place on Feb. 18

“In order to preserve the dignity of our portrayal of Osceola and Renegade, we normally don’t make any appearances outside of Florida State football games,” said Durham, who portrayed Osceola while he was a Florida State student. “But certainly with the Seminole Tribe requesting it, we were absolutely honored and most definitely said ‘yes’ to this very special request.”

The appearance of Osceola and Renegade at the parade was so well received that Seminole Tribe officials invited Osceola to plant the spear prior to the festival’s rodeo, which was held on Feb. 19.

“We were elated to be asked to do that — to plant the spear on a Seminole Indian reservation,” Durham said.

Prior to this, the spear had only ever been planted at Doak Campbell Stadium or the stadium of a bowl game or a neutral-site game.

“We have conducted the Osceola and Renegade program as a great tribute to the unconquered people of the Seminole Tribe of Florida,” Durham said. “This goes back to a 1977 meeting at a Seminole Indian reservation between my father, Bill Durham, and Chief Howard Tommie. My father asked for permission for us to portray Osceola at Florida State. Now, 35 years later, to be at the reservation and to have been asked to do what we did is a tremendous honor.”

The rodeo, which is a tour stop of the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association, was videotaped as part of cable network GAC’s rodeo coverage. The show — and perhaps footage of Osceola and Renegade — is scheduled to air on
GAC at 10 p.m. EST on Tuesday, March 6 (check local listings).

To learn more about the Osceola and Renegade tradition, click here.