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What’s Good® Guide of Weekly Events in Gainesville and Alachua County, May 2-8, 2024

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Whether you prefer the great outdoors or the great indoors, the sunny days of May will have you marking your calendar with dates to explore What’s Good®. Immerse yourself in the rich cultural tapestry of the 44th annual Fifth Avenue Arts Festival, celebrating the Fifth Avenue/Seminary Lane community with art, music and more. Browse vintage Florida memorabilia at the Matheson History Museum’s Floridiana Show. Gather U-pick berries and bite into a sweet treat at the Island Grove Blueberry Festival. Plus, plan ahead for Mother’s Day with our list of gift markets and events.

Read on for more of What’s Good®,
Your partners at Visit Gainesville, Alachua County

Be Informed: The below information was accurate at the time of publishing. 
Please contact organizers directly to double-check details.


fifth avenue arts festival

Celebrate Local History and African-American Culture at the Fifth Avenue Arts Festival
Saturday, May 4, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday, May 5, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. | Santa Fe College Blount Center

530 W University Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601

The Cultural Arts Coalition presents the annual Fifth Ave Arts Festival celebrating the rich cultural history of the Fifth Avenue and Seminary Lane community. Little Jake and the Soul Searchers take the stage Saturday evening at 5 p.m. with a high-energy set of classic soul, blues and R&B. This year’s festival features the theme “Continued Community Growth” and over 100 vendors. Admission is free.


historic illustration of alachua savanah by william bartram

Travel Back to 1774 and Follow the Footsteps of Naturalist William Bartram at Bartram Days
Friday, May 3 – Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. | Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park

100 Savannah Blvd., Micanopy FL 32667

Arriving at the St. John’s River 250 years ago, William Bartram set inland on a path to the Alachua Savanna located in present-day Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park. His explorations and subsequent publication of Travels had a major effect on settlement and development of Florida.

Enjoy historical reenactments and meet William Bartram, Trader Job Wiggens, and Ahaya-The Cowkeeper. Learn about plants and animals of the prairie from local environmental experts. Stroll through a 19th century “cracker” cattle camp and listen to songs about the prairie performed live. Head inside the Visitor Center to explore exhibits and visit the gift shop for limited edition commemorative t-shirts featuring a colorful illustration of William Bartram looking across Paynes Prairie.
Image: William Bartram’s illustration of the “Alatchua Savanah”


floridiana show

Browse Vintage Florida Memorabilia at the Floridiana Show
Saturday, May 4, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. | Matheson History Museum

513 E University Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601

The Matheson History Museum’s Floridiana Show features a variety of vendors with array of nostalgic artifacts and collectibles from The Sunshine State. Enjoy live music from the Patchwork trio: Cathy DeWitt, Jolene Jones and Janet Rucker.
Sponsored in part by Visit Gainesville, Alachua County


free fridays concert series

Kick-Off the Weekend with Rock Guitarist Nancy Luca at the Free Fridays Concert Series
Friday, May 3, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. | Bo Diddley Plaza

Downtown Gainesville

Sing along or dance to some of your classic rock favorites with a rockin’ show by the Luca Band. Guitarist Nancy Luca has been a lead guitarist ever since first learning the instrument from Mike Campbell (Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and local band Mudcrutch). Luca plays lead guitar for several Los Angeles bands, including The Whole Lotta Rosies, and has a recording studio, Gatorville Records. She is joined by talented local musicians for a non-stop high energy set.

Bring a chair or spread a blanket and enjoy the longest-running free outdoor concert series in the region featuring a diverse range of local and regional musical acts.


master gardener plant sale

Browse a Selection of Native Plants, Herbs, Trees and More at the UF/IFAS Extension Alachua County Master Gardener Plant Sale
Saturday May 4, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. | Alachua County Agriculture and Equestrian Center
23100 W Newberry Rd., Newberry, FL 32669

The Master Gardener Plant Sale features a variety of herbs, annuals, perennials, natives, trees and more at affordable prices. Meet with Master Gardener volunteers for advice on selection and care of your plants. Explore informational booths and gardening presentations. Admission is free. 


swamp head may the 4th beer with you

Use the Force and Raise a Glass to a Galaxy Far, Far Away at May the Fourth Beer With You
Saturday, May 4, 12 p.m. – 11 p.m. | Swamp Head Brewery

3650 SW 42nd Ave., Gainesville, FL 32608

The Wetlands taproom at Swamp Head Brewery transform into the Swamps of Dagobah for a day of special new craft beer releases. Get into May the Fourth spirit with music from DJ Bessie 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. Online presales for limited glasswear begin Saturday at 10 a.m.


island grove blueberry festival

Taste a Sweet Superfruit Treat at the Island Grove Blueberry Festival
Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. | Island Grove, FL

21921 SE US HWY 301, Island Grove, FL 32654

Celebrate all things blueberry with craft and artisan vendors, bake sale, transportation to Aunt Zelma’s u-pick blueberry field, kid zone and food trucks. Admission is free.

Explore other sites nearby including Island Grove Winery and Tasting House, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings State Park and The Yearling restaurant.


gainesville food and music festival

Bring Your Dance Moves and Your Appetite to the Gainesville Food and Music Festival
Sunday, May 5, 12 p.m. – 7 p.m. | Swamp Head Brewery

3650 SW 42nd Ave., Gainesville, FL 32608

Savor Latin flavors from Mi Apa Latin Café and sip a beverage from Swamp Head Brewery. Dance to salsa, merengue and reggaeton or rock out with bands performing in English and Spanish. Admission is free.
Sponsored in part by Visit Gainesville, Alachua County


birds and brews

Join a Guided Birding Walk from First Magnitude Brewing Company to Depot Park and Back at Birds and Brews
Sunday, May 5, 5:45 p.m. – 7 p.m. | First Magnitude Brewing Company

1220 St. Veitch St., Gainesville, FL 32601

Volunteers from Alachua Audubon Society lead a guided tour identifying bird species. All birding skill levels are welcome on this informal walk. Bring your binoculars or borrow a loaner pair. The walk concludes at the brewery with plenty of time to enjoy a night cap as the sun sets. 


GramFest

Celebrate the “Cosmic American Music” Legacy of Gram Parsons at GramFest
Sunday, May 5, 2 p.m. – 7 p.m. | Heartwood Soundstage

619 S Main St., Gainesville, FL 32601

As a member of The Byrds and Flying Burrito Brothers in the late 1960s, Gram Parsons released his blend of country, soul, folk and rock to the masses. Enjoy musical tributes from Ned Stewart & Dim Lights, Dan Stepp & Hard Luck Society, Honey Badgers, Patchwork Girls, The Shambles, Quartermoon and more. Admission is free.


happy mothers day

Plan Ahead for Mother’s Day
Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 12. Shop for the a unique gift and make a reservation at a local restaurant with our list of events for Mother’s Day.

mother's day market at the auk market

Mother’s Day Gift Market with Over 50 Makers, Artists and Food Vendors at The AUK Market
Saturday, May 4, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Watercolors & Wine at the Florida Museum
Thursday, May 9, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

See Baby Lemurs with their Mom at the Mother’s Day Walking Tour at Carson Springs Wildlife
Saturday, May 11, 10 a.m.

Farm Dining Experience Featuring Chef Charlie Keller at Swallowtail Farm
Saturday, May 11, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Mother’s Day at the Bryer Patch
Saturday, May 11 – Sunday, May 12, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Mother’s Day Brunch at Local Provisions
Sunday, May 12, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Mother’s Day Buffet at Sweetwater Branch Inn
Sunday, May 12, 11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet at Best Western Gateway Grand
Sunday, May 12, 10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Mother’s Day Muffins and Mimosas at Artisans’ Guild Gallery
Sunday, May 12, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Mother’s Day Concert with Gainesville Community Band at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church
Sunday, May 12, 3 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Free Dessert for Moms at Mi Apa Latin Cafe
Sunday, May 12

Authentic English Tea with or without Escape Game at Escapology
Sunday, May 12, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Free Admission for Moms at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens
Sunday, May 12, 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Mother’s Day Jazz Brunch at Covey Kitchen and Cocktails
Sunday, May 12, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Mother’s Day Menu at Spurrier’s Gridiron Grill
Sunday, May 12, 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.


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Pop-Up Markets and Retail Shopping

Tools, Hardware, Cabinets and More at the Grand Opening of Renovator Reuse
Friday, May 3, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

The Gainesville Oddities Market

Taxidermy, Bug Art, Witchy Items, Music, Food Trucks and More at The Gainesville Oddities Market at Bo Diddley Plaza
Sunday, May 5, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Shop local boutiques and national brands at Butler Enterprises, Celebration Pointe, The Oaks Mall and Shoppes at Thornebrook.


Arts & Theatre

beyond therapy

Get a Dose of Laughter at Stage Comedy of Beyond Therapy at Acrosstown Repertory Theatre
Now through Sunday, May 4


Events & Festivals

Local Art Expo at Hotel Indigo Gainesville Celebration Pointe
Friday, May 3, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

star wars day may the 4th be with you

Star Wars Costume Contest, Kids Dance Party, Live Performances and a Screening of “A New Hope” at the Family-Friendly Celebration of Star Wars Day at Bo Diddley Plaza
Saturday, May 4, 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.

macrame workshop

Macrame Plant Hanger Workshop at Unique Notions
Saturday, May 4, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

May the Fourth Movie Night: Star Wars The Force Awakens at Tioga Town Center
Saturday, May 4, 7:30 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Cinco de Mayo Dance Class at Rosa B Williams Center/352artspace
Sunday, May 5, 3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

linocut workshop

Linocut Workshop with Spotty Boy Press at The AUK Market
Sunday, May 5, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

illustration of pigs in mud

Plant-Friendly Vendors and Rescued Farm Animals at the May Farmers Moo-ket at Critter Creek Farm Sanctuary
Sunday, May 5, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.


Music & Performance

Rock with Liliac at High Dive
Thursday, May 2, 7:30 p.m.

Singer-Songwriter Colby Acuff at Heartwood Soundstage
Thursday, May 2, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m. 

sunny day real estate

(sold out) Sunny Day Real Estate – Diary 30th Anniversary Tour at High Dive
Friday, May 3, 6 p.m.

Classic Rock with Couch Messiahs at One Love Café
Friday, May 3, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Jazz, Motown and R&B with The Browns at Lightnin’ Salvage
Friday, May 3, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Singer-Songwriter Chris Renzema at Heartwood Soundstage
Friday, May 3, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m.

House, Techno and Disco at Neon Liger Presents The Function at The Atlantic
Friday, May 3, 10 p.m. – 2 a.m.

UF Carillon Studio Recitals with Beth Blair and Mark Zhang at UF Century Tower
Saturday, May 4, 12 p.m. and 3 p.m.

Classic Rock with The Shambles at One Love Café
Saturday, May 4, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Bluegrass with Dalton and Campbell at Lightnin’ Salvage
Saturday, May 4, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

band members of random kats

Folk, Rock and Country with The Random Kats at Heartwood Soundstage
Saturday, May 4, 8 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Pianist Joshua Voorhies at The Bull
Saturday, May 4, 8 p.m.

All Vinyl Bossa Nova, Spititual Jazz, Free Soul and More with DJ Don Miller at Baby J’s Bar
Saturday, May 4, 9 p.m.

Annasemble Community Orchestra Concert at First United Methodist Church
Sunday, May 5, 3 p.m.

The Hogtown Rounders Writers Round at Lightnin’ Salvage
Tuesday, May 7, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.


Craft Breweries

Image of the Sippin' Seven Ale Trail logo depicting a blue bison witj seven blue birds siting on the Bison's back. Photo also shows a pint glass with the same logo. Text on image says: Award-winning breweries. Gainesville. Alachua. High Springs. Visit Gainesville.com

With a lineup of award-winning craft beer makers, The Sippin’ Seven Alachua County Ale Trail breweries are the ultimate hangout spots to sip, socialize, and maybe even spark a little friendly rivalry. So, after a day of gallivanting around, why not kick back like a local with a taste of the AC brew scene. 

Cinco de Mayo Karaoke Night at Blackadder Brewing Company
Thursday, May 2, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Classic Rock with Crooked Counsel at High Springs Brewing Company
Friday, May 3, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

dont fail me again admiral

Star Wars Themed Beer Release of “Don’t Fail Me Again, Admiral” at Blackadder Brewing Company
Saturday, May 4, 12 p.m.

gainesville record fair

Gainesville Record Fair at Cypress and Grove Brewing Company
Sunday, May 5, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

salsa de mayo salsa showdown

Salsa Recipe Contest, Latin Food and Margaritas at Salsa De Mayo at Blackadder Brewing Company
Sunday, May 5, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.


U-Picks and Farmers Markets

blueberries

U-Pick Blueberries at Aunt Zelma’s Blueberries
Open Daily, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

U-Pick Blueberries at Santa Fe River Farms
Open Daily, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

U-Pick Blueberries, Raspberries and Strawberries at Straughn Farms (Archer)
Saturdays and Sundays, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Grove Street Farmers Market with Live Music
Mondays, 4 p.m. –7 p.m.

Archer Farmers Market at Archer Historical Society Railroad Museum
Tuesdays, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.

GNV Market at South Main Station
Thursdays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Farmers Market at Celebration Pointe
Thursdays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

High Springs Farmers Market
Fridays, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Haile Village Farmers Market
Saturdays, 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Alachua County Farmers Market
Saturdays, 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Waldo Farmers and Flea Market
Saturdays and Sundays, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.


Bites and Brunch

Wine Tasting at Superette
Thursday, May 2, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. 

Wine Tasting at Beaker and Flask Wine Co.
Thursday, May 2, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Wine Tasting at the Traveler Wine Bar
Thursday, May 2, 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Milagro Tequila Tasting at The Good Pour
Friday, May 3, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Bulleit Single Malt Whiskey Tasting at The Bourbon Barn
Friday, May 3, 5 p.m.

Cinco de Mayo Party at Mom’s OG
Sunday, May 5, 7:30 a.m. – 2 a.m.

Cinco de Mayo at las carretas

Cinco de Mayo at Las Carretas Mexican Restaurant
Sunday, May 5, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Cinco de Mayo at Chuy’s
Sunday, May 5, 12 p.m.

jazz brunch

Jazz Brunch at Covey Kitchen and Cocktails
Sunday, May 8, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Junior Pizzaiolo Cooking Class for Kids at V Pizza
Monday, May 6, 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

(sold out) Quick Jams and Biscuits Cooking Class at the Fat Tuscan
Wednesday, May 8, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.


Sports & Fans

archery targets

Funtastic Fridays Archery at Easton Newberry Archery Center
Friday, May 3, 5:30 p.m.

Street Legal Madness Drag Racing at Gainesville Raceway
Friday, May 3, 6 p.m.

Spring Bracket Bash Drag Racing at Gainesville Raceway,
Saturday, May 4, 8 a.m.

Insider Exposure Florida Brawl Basketball Tournament at Alachua County Sports and Events Center
Saturday, May 4 – Sunday, May 5

Gators Women’s Tennis Host the 2024 NCAA Women’s Tennis Championships Gainesville Regional at Alfred A. Ring Tennis Complex
Saturday, May 4, 12 p.m.: FUI vs. Miami
Saturday, May 4, 3 p.m.: Florida vs. Stetson
Sunday, May 5, 2 p.m winners from Saturday’s matches

Gators Baseball vs. Tennessee at Condron Family Ballpark
Thursday, May 2, 7 p.m.
Friday, May 3, 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 4, 6:30 p.m.

Gators Softball vs. Texas A&M at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium
Friday, May 3, 7 p.m.
Saturday, May 4, 2 p.m.
Sunday, May 5, 1 p.m.

Gators Baseball vs. USF at Condron Family Ballpark
Tuesday, May 7, 6:30 p.m.


Parks & Trails

Star Wars Themed Free Timed 5K at Depot Park
Saturday, May 4, 7:30 a.m.

living history farm

Living History Saturday at Morningside Nature Center
Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Guided Walk at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens
Saturday, May 4, 10 a.m.

Perspectives in the Park: Pathways to Resilience at Hogtown Creek Headwaters Nature Center
Sunday, May 5, 12 p.m.

Ranger-Led Hike at Sweetwater Wetlands Park
Sunday, May 5, 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.


River & Springs

paddling on the santa fe river

Enjoy Cooler Weather and Explore the Outdoors and with Anderson’s Outdoor Adventures and Visit 8 Springs in 8 Miles
Friday – Sunday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Fed by the underground Floridan Aquifer, North Florida has one of the highest concentrations of springs in the world. Anderson’s Outdoor Adventure offers an easy way to experience 8 springs in 8 miles. Paddle along the Santa Fe River in a canoe or kayak and experience crystal clear water, see native wildlife and relax in a tranquil nature setting. 

tubing at the springs

Float or Splash Into Freshwater Springs
North Florida is home to the largest collection of first-magnitude springs in the United States. The springs make a perfect destination for swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving and relaxing in nature. If you’re looking for outdoor fun, we’ve got you covered with our list of nearby springs, great places to stay and fun things to do.


Museums & Galleries

soft art exhibit

Opening Reception: SOFT – Tradition to Rebellion in Fiber Arts at The Historic Thomas Center
May 2, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
On view now through Friday, August 23

Art After Dark with UF Center for Arts and Migration at Harn Museum of Art
Thursday, May 2, 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.

New at the Harn Museum of Art: Kaleidoscope of Colors in Asian Art
Now through April 26, 2026

Works from the Santa Fe Springs Plein Air Paintout at Lanza Gallery and Art Supplies
Now through Sunday, May 4

families attending glass bottom boat theatre at florida museum

Explore Florida’s Most Valuable Resource at the Water Shapes Florida Exhibit at Florida Museum of Natural History
Now through Sunday, May 4


Save The Date

Easton Foundations Gator Cup, May 10-12

Windsor Zucchini Festival, May 11

Lemon Twigs at Heartwood Soundstage, May 11

Newberry Watermelon Festival, May 18

World Tree Kangaroo Day, May 18

Hogtown Opry, May 18


For a complete list of events please visit www.visitgainesville.com/events/

Thank you for your continued partnership! Please keep in communication with us by sharing your events, updates and news with our team by emailing info@visitgainesville.com.

Your participation, communication, and sharing of events and programs is a key way for us to market our community to visitors and to enhance the engagement of residents in all of the incredible programs you create.

Put simply, the more you share with us, the more we have to promote. Please read the attached PDF document for additional ways in which your organization can participate.

Visit Gainesville, Alachua County | (352) 374-5260 | 33 North Main Street, Gainesville 32601 Never miss an event: Follow Visit Gainesville, Alachua County on social media.

The images and materials included in the Alachua County What’s Good guide of weekly events may be copyrighted works and property of the content provider, and thus subject to legal protections. Display by the County of such does not authorize another to copy, reproduce, distribute, publish, display, modify, or in any way exploit any such works.

This publication contains information about events, venues and activities in Alachua County, Florida. Reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the information is accurate. We are not responsible for errors or omissions in the information provided. For complete details, contact the host directly. The information is not advice, and should not be treated as such. Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing paragraph, we do not represent, warrant, undertake or guarantee that the information is correct, accurate, complete or non-misleading. We will not be liable to you in respect of any special, indirect or consequential loss or damage. If a section of this disclaimer is determined by any court or other competent authority to be unlawful and/or unenforceable, the other sections of this disclaimer continue in effect.


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