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What’s Good in Gainesville and Alachua County, April 1-7, 2021

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Make the most of a gorgeous spring weekend exploring What’s Good. See what’s in bloom with a guided tour at the 68-acre Kanapaha Botanical Gardens, featuring a new children’s garden. Or flock together with nature lovers for a guided tour a Sweetwater Wetlands Park or an evening of Birds and Brews with First Magnitude Brewing Co.

Live music and performing arts are abuzz with activity with the opening weekend of Hallelujah Girls at the High Springs Playhouse and the best of rising local music at the 2021 Swamp Records Showcase. And, The Matheson History Museum reopens with Trailblazers: 150 Years of Alachua County Women.

Celebrate Easter with delicious brunch options at area restaurants including Sweetwater Branch Inn’s famous Easter Brunch and the decadent “Cadbury Crème” Croissant and take-out options at Uppercrust Productions. Then head over to the Carson Springs Wildlife for an Easter Safari complete with the Easter Bunny, big cat feedings, candy and more.

Wear your mask and stay at safe physical distances while you enjoy the most of each day. Please adhere to public safety guidelines to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Wishing you the happiest of holidays,
– Your partners at Visit Gainesville, Alachua County 


The below information was accurate at the time of publishing. Due to the current fluctuating environment, please contact organizers directly to double-check details.


Safety First. Be Informed About COVID19

In Alachua County, masks or face coverings are required when social distancing is not possible. For additional Coronavirus (COVID-19) information, visit the Alachua County COVID19 Community Resource Portal, the Alachua County Facebook page, call the Coronavirus Information Line at 866-779-6121, visit the Florida Department of Health website, and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).


Matheson History Museum

Explore Trailblazers: 150 Years of Alachua County Women as the Matheson History Museum Reopens its Doors
Friday, April 1 – Saturday, April 2, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. | Matheson History Museum
513 East University Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601

“Trailblazers” highlights the lives and accomplishments of eleven women who contributed to the past and present success of Alachua County. View the online exhibit here. In addition to reopening, visitors can participate in limited tours of the 1867 Matheson House. Contact the museum to schedule a tour. View reopening safety guidelines here. Since opening in 1994, the Matheson History Museum has welcomed visitors to learn about local history. The museum complex includes the main exhibit gallery, Matheson Library & Archives, 1867 Matheson House, Tison Tool Barn and Sweetwater Park featuring native plant collections.


kandace springs

With Soul-Drenched Vocals and a Piano Style All Her Own, Kandace Springs Delivers a Refined Mix of R&B, Jazz and Pop Upstage at the Phillips Center
Thursday, April 1, 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. | UF Phillips Center
3201 Hull Rd., Gainesville, FL 32611 

Kandace Springs is riding high off the buzz surrounding her newest album, “The Women Who Raised Me.” The album features inspired interpretations of songs that she heard growing up in Tennessee from classic icons like Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone and Dusty Springfield, and modern masters like Sade and Lauryn Hill. Go upstage as the UF Phillips Center’s main stage transforms into a jazz club setting complete with tables and chairs for two evening experiences. 


carson springs easter tour

Hop on a Drive-Thru Easter Wildlife Tour and See Rare Animals
Saturday, April 3, 1 p.m. | Carson Springs Wildlife Conservation Foundation

8528 E County Rd., 225, Gainesville, FL 32609 

The Easter Bunny isn’t the only animal on display. Tours include big cat feeding demos and candy for the kids. Carson Springs is located on 275 acres of lush Florida woods and farmland providing a home environment to approximately 30 rare and endangered species and over 100 animals. 


a florida legacy at harn museum

Cultural Travel on a Budget? Explore the Rich and Diverse Offerings of a College Town

Did you know Gainesville has a cultural plaza complete with a world-class performing arts center; one of the largest university-affiliated art museums that is home to Claude Monet’s Champ d’avoine, and the world’s largest collection of Florida themed art, plus a natural history museum with more than 40 million specimens and artifacts including the world’s largest collections of butterflies and moths?  

Spend a day enjoying and exploring the Harn Museum of Art, the Florida Museum of Natural History and Butterfly Rainforest, and Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, all in one location at the University of Florida Cultural Plaza. Admission to the Harn Museum and Florida Museum is free.  

The Cultural Plaza is just down the street from Lake Alice, the Baughman Center and the world’s largest occupied bat houses on the UF campus. And if you’ve never strolled through the University of Florida campus, you’ll be in for a treat with sites like the historic 157-foot tall Century Tower.  

After museum hopping, stroll back to the Aloft or Hilton to get yourself ready for a live performance at the Phillips Center for Performing Arts. But first enjoy a craft cocktail at W Xyz Lounge the nearby Aloft Gainesville by Marriott, or delicious dinner at the Shula’s Steak House located inside the Hilton University of Florida. If you time it right, you can see Blue Note jazz and R&B musician Kandace Springs on Thursday, April 1 at 7 p.m. or 9 p.m.


safestay logo

Find the county’s most comprehensive and searchable list of area hotels and restaurants at visitgainesville.com

Learn about our lodging partner’s commitment to a safe stay for all who visit, work and live in Alachua County at Safe Stay Pledge.


hallelujah girls

Laugh Out Loud at the Opening Weekend of Hallelujah Girls
April 2-25 | High Springs Playhouse

23416 W Hwy 27, High Springs, FL 32643 

Hilarity abounds when five southern belles decide to turn an abandoned church into a day spa. A sixth Belle wants it for her own private museum. The laughs are non-stop as the women compete, and then the secret in the church basement just adds to the hilarity. This show contains adult-oriented themes and dialogue that may be inappropriate for young viewers.


swamp records showcase

Savor a Night of Local Music at the 2021 Swamp Records Showcase
Saturday, April 3, 7 p.m. | Heartwood Soundstage
619 S Main St., Gainesville, FL 32601

Swamp Records presents a full lineup of bands including Parrotfish, The Forum, Driptones, Driveaway, Ashton Case, Faith & Majesty, Neverless, Dionysus, Mayce and Arden. Soak up the sounds from the outdoor stage at Heartwood. 

Swamp Records is a label run by students bridging the gap between the University of Florida and the local music scene. 


blooming flower at kanapaha

See What’s Blooming in Spring on a Guided Walk through Kanapaha Botanical Gardens
Saturday, April 3, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. | Kanapaha Botanical Gardens
4700 SW 58th Dr, Gainesville, FL 32608

Entrance to Kanapaha Botanical gardens with tall bamboo and flowers

Stroll through the collections for colorful spring highlights. Spread across 68 acres, Kanapaha Botanical Gardens features the largest public display of bamboo in the state, the largest herb garden in the southeast.


Sweetwater Wetlands Park water and land

Identify Wildlife on a Ranger-Led Tour at Sweetwater Wetlands Park
Sunday, April 4, 8:30 a.m. – 10 a.m. | Sweetwater Wetlands Park
325 SE Williston Rd., Gainesville, FL 32641

birding at sweetwater

Pre-register for this tour to see birds and wildlife at Sweetwater Wetlands Park. Masks are required throughout the tour. The ranger led tour includes about a 1/2 mile walk and will last about 1 hour. Bring water, sunscreen and comfortable walking shoes. 


birds and brews

Go Birding at the Brewery with the Birds and Brews Guided Bird Walk
Sunday, April 4, 6:15 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. | First Magnitude Brewing Company
1220 SE Veitch St., Gainesville, FL 32601 

Meet at First Magnitude Brewing Company and walk over to Depot Park with volunteers from the Alachua Audubon Society. After an hour-long guided tour along the nature trail at Depot Park, return to the brewery for a refreshing craft beer.


happy easter

Celebrate the Easter Holiday with Brunch and Special Menus

Easter Weekend Menu at the Pink Flamingo Diner
Friday, April 2 – Saturday, April 3, 5 p.m., Sunday, April 4, 12 p.m.

Easter Menu at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Sunday, April 4, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. 

Easter Brunch at Sweetwater Branch Inn
Sunday, April 4, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. 

Easter Lunch at Embers Wood Grill
Sunday, April 4, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. 

Easter Brunch at Nopal
Sunday, April 4, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. 

Easter Weekend Menu at Uppercrust
Friday, April 2 – Sunday, April 4, 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Easter Egg Hunts

Alachua Easter Egg Hunt at Hal Brady Recreation Complex
Saturday, April 3, 10 a.m.

North Central Florida YMCA Swim Safety Egg-Stravaganza
Saturday, April 3, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.


For more of the timely entertainment information you love, follow us on Instagram and Facebook for daily updates and re-shares of your inspiring photos. Tag us at #whatsgoodalachuacounty.


Arts & Theatre

Sunshine State Book Festival Online with Keynote Speakers Kimberly Jones and Gilly Segal, Coauthors of the NAACP Image Award Nominated I’m Not Dying with You Tonight
Now through June 30


Pop-Up Markets

Bazar A La Carte Night and Day Markets at the Historic Seagle Building
Saturday, April 3 – Sunday, April 4 

The Florida Vintage Market at High Dive
Saturday, April 3, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.


Music & Performance

Punk Music with Sarchasm, Jaake (Get Married) and Champagne Colored Cars with Fest at Home Live on Facebook and Twitch
Thursday, April 1, 7 p.m.

Country with Scotty Lee Williams at Mother’s Pub & Grill North Gainesville
Thursday, April 1, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Comedy Show and Open Mic at Flaco’s
Thursday, April 1, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Country Music with Chris McNeil at Pink Flamingo Diner
Friday, April 2, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Classic Rock with Centerlane on the Patio at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Friday, April 2, 7 p.m.

Alternative Metal with Purely Red, The Pine Drape, We The Generation at High Dive
Friday, April 2, 8 p.m.

Country Music with Scotty Lee William at Mother’s Pub & Grill North Gainesville
Saturday, April 3, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Classic Rock with Crooked Counsel at The Depot and Speakeasy Room
Saturday, April 3, 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Pop and Rock Covers with the Barstool Prophets on the Patio at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Saturday, April 3, 7 p.m.

apex band at high dive

Hard Rock with Apex, Spearhead Horizon, Pupal at High Dive
Saturday, April 3, 9 p.m.

Rock and Roll with the Killer B’s at Mother’s Pub & Grill North Gainesville
Sunday, April 4, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Country Music Singer-Songwriter Cameron Wheaton at Pink Flamingo Diner
Sunday, April 4, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Rock with Molly’s Back at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Sunday, April 4, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Country Music with Sondra Hunt Band at Pink Flamingo Diner
Saturday, April 3, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Country Music with Cliff Dorsey at Woodyard Grill
Wednesday, April 7, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Country Music Wednesday at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Wednesday, April 7, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.


Craft Breweries

Open Mic Night at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Thursday, April 1, 6 p.m. 

Hannah Love Live Music at Cypress & Grove Brewing Company
Friday, April 2, 7 p.m.

bottomless mimosas

Bottomless Mimosas Brunch at Big Top Brewing Company
Saturday, April 3, 10 a.m. 

Salsero Saturdays at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Saturday, April 3, 8 p.m. – 12 a.m. 

Beer Yoga with Kori Brooks at High Springs Brewing Company
Monday, April 5, 6 p.m. 

Beer Bingo Tuesdays at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Tuesday, April 6, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Brainaholics Trivia at First Magnitude Brewing Company
Tuesday, April 6, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. 

Cornhole Tourney at High Springs Brewing Company
Wednesday, April 7, 6:30 p.m. 

Team Trivia at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Wednesday, April 7, 6 p.m.


U-Picks & Farmer’s Markets

strawberries

Organic Strawberry and Food Market at Frog Song Organics
Sunday, April 4, 2 p.m.

U-Pick Strawberries at Roger’s Farm (check Facebook for latest updates)
Tuesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sunday, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Cypress & Grove Farmer’s Market
Mondays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

GNV Market at Heartwood Soundstage
Thursdays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

High Springs Farmer’s Market
Fridays, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Newberry Farmer’s Market
Saturdays, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Alachua County Farmer’s Market
Saturdays, 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Haile Farmer’s Market
Saturdays, 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Waldo Farmer’s Market
Saturdays and Sundays, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.


Bites & Brunch

Wine Tasting at Downtown Wine and Cheese
Thursday, April 1

pie class at the fat tuscan

All About Pies Cooking Class at The Fat Tuscan
Thursday, April 1, 6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. 

Making Ravioli Cooking Class at The Fat Tuscan
Friday, April 2, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Making Ravioli Cooking Class at The Fat Tuscan
Saturday, April 3, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Making Focaccia Bread Cooking Class at The Fat Tuscan
Wednesday, April 7, 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. 

Drag Brunch at Curia on the Drag
Saturday, April 3, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Dine at Local Restaurants, Enjoy Outdoor Seating or Grab a Meal To-Go
Dine-in or take advantage of additional outdoor seating expanded onto sidewalks like “Streatery GNV” in downtown Gainesville.

Did you know that our dining scene regularly makes national headlines? Find out why We Chomp with the best of them!

Find a searchable list of Alachua County restaurants here.


Sports

Gators Lacrosse vs. East Carolina at Donald R. Dizney Stadium
Thursday, April 1, 4 p.m., Saturday, April 3, 11 a.m.

florida ballpark

Gators Baseball vs. Ole Miss at Florida Ballpark
Friday, April 2, 6:30 p.m., Saturday, April 3, 1 p.m. 

Get Your Golf Game “Lit” Under the Lights at Ironwood Golf Course
Friday, April 2 – Saturday, April 3, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

archery targets

Funtastic Fridays at Easton Newberry Archery Center
Friday, April 2, 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. 

Summit Series Bracket Race at Gainesville Raceway
Saturday, April 3, 9 a.m. 

2021 Pepsi Florida Relays at the University of Florida
Saturday, April 2 – Sunday, April 3, check for same-day ticket availability 

Swamp City 5K Obstacle Course Race at Celebration Pointe
Saturday, April 3, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. 

Gators Softball vs. USF at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium
Wednesday, April 7, 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Parks & Trails

Trek Through Trails: Top 5 Family-Friendly and Dog-Friendly Hikes
Spending time in nature has been proven to benefit the mind, body and spirit, so round up the kids, find the dog, or go solo and reacquaint yourself with the outdoors on Alachua County’s nature trails.

River & Springs

clear springs

Swim Into the Freshwater Springs and Experience Nature Near Gainesville
The springs are a perfect way to get outside and explore the untouched natural side of Florida. Did you know North Florida is home to over 1,000 freshwater springs? The water flows crystal clear at 72 degrees all year round so make a splash on your Gainesville and Alachua County itinerary.

Museums & Galleries

blooming flowers

Florida Museum Online Plant Sale Featuring Over 100 Species
Friday, April 2 – Monday, April 5 

Opening Reception “Of A Different Flesh” at Good News Arts
Saturday, April 3, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Gainesville Fine Arts Association Member Highlights Exhibition at GFAA Gallery
Open Tuesday – Friday 3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., Saturday, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

a florida legacy exhibit

Florida Landmarks and Scenic Coastlines are Depicted Across Nearly 170 Paintings, Watercolors and Drawings at “A Florida Legacy: Gift of Samuel H. and Roberta T. Vickers” at the Harn Museum of Art
Open Tuesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Sunday, 1 p.m – 5 p.m. 

Master of Fine Arts Candidates Exhibition I at University Galleries
Friday, April 2, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. 

Spring Showcase at Firehouse Gallery
Open Thursday – Friday, 3 p.m. – 6 p.m., Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

See Live Animals in the Survival of the Slowest Exhibit at the Florida Museum
Open Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Spark Wonder at the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention
Open Friday-Sunday, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.


Save The Date

Fun Home at Gainesville Community Playhouse, April 8-25

Top Golf Live at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, April 22-25

MAM Concert Series Southern Rock and Country, April 23-25

The Gainesville Orchestra Presents POPS, April 24

GLAM Craft Show, April 25

44th Annual Pioneer Days Festival, April 24-25

40th Birthday Party for “Henry” the Indian Rhino at Carson Springs Wildlife, May 14

Newberry Watermelon Festival, May 15

Cool Cars Under the Starsat Waldo City Square, May 22

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.

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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