What’s Good in Gainesville and Alachua County, August 26 – September 1, 2021

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Sprinkle your weekend plans with a flavorful dash of What’s Good. Stop by the opening receptions of the Gainesville Fine Arts Association’s “Motion” exhibit or the UF Libby Gallery’s “If Nothing Changes.” Or explore current exhibits at the Harn Museum of Art, Florida Museum of Natural History, Cade Museum, Good News Arts in High Springs and others.

Add live entertainment with the Indie Live Back to School Fest at Heartwood Soundstage, with a performance by Nashville recording artist Ryan Montgomery at Knockin’ Boots Saloon or with the Free Fridays Concert Series at Bo Diddley Plaza.

Scroll down for pop-up shops, dining, events, and more creative ways to explore What’s Good!  

Be safe and be well,
 –Your partners at Visit Gainesville, Alachua County 

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

Individual businesses in Alachua County may have masking and distancing requirements at their private establishments. We encourage you to become familiar with businesses, venues and attractions you intend to visit and to reach out directly to these establishments should you have questions regarding their current public health and safety procedures. 

indie live

Grab Your Friends or Make New Ones at Heartwood’s Indie Live Back to School Fest – Featuring Undeniably Good Tunes and Good Times
Saturday, August 28, 7 p.m. – 11:30 p.m. | Heartwood Soundstage
619 S Main St., Gainesville, FL 32601 

Heartwood Soundstage and Swamp Records present a lineup of bands to kick off the new school year. Hotel Fiction and The Hails are joined by The Forum, The Late Night Losers and Driptones.

Heartwood Soundstage is a state-of-the-art recording studio, video production facility, intimate performance venue with an outdoor music stage – built by musicians for music lovers and music makers. 

ryan montgomery tour

Sing Along with Nashville Recording Artist Ryan Montgomery
Friday, August 27, 8 p.m. | Knockin’ Boots Saloon

201 W University Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601 

Featured on top streaming music playlists, Ryan Montgomery’s original songs are crafted from growing up in the “tailgate life” in South Florida. General Admission and VIP Meet & Greet tickets available online.

santa fe zoo

Walk Along the Shaded Trail and Get Up Close to Animals at the Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo
Open Daily, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. | Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo
3000 NW 83rd St., Gainesville, FL 32606 

Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo is the only zoo on a college campus accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). The quarter-mile wooded trail showcases a diverse collection of native and exotic species including American Alligators, Matschie’s Tree Kangaroos, Asian small-clawed otters and more. Download a zoo map, view an animal list and plan your visit online

stay with the gators

Stay Where the Gators Stay and Pregame Play 

The UF Hilton Hotel & Conference Center welcomes Gator fans for a weekend stay and celebration during the 2021 home football games. Exciting pre-game activities begin the Friday night before home games in The No Name Lounge. Join fellow Gator fans in a special and unique 2Bits performance surrounded with authentic memorabilia, music, and No Name Lounge specials. On Saturday, participate in the UF Hilton Tailgate. Before the game, join in the family fun with games, food and drink specials, and fun photo areas set up around the hotel. 

Reserve your fun-filled football weekend now by clicking here to book online, or by calling 352-371-3600.

safestay logo

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

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.

gfaa motion exhibit

Flow through the GFAA Gallery at the Opening Reception of “Motion”
Friday, August 27, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. | GFAA
1314 S Main St., Gainesville, FL 32601 

View works from local artists as they explore movement and motion in 2D and 3D. Enjoy refreshments, entertainment and meet the artists. Awards presented for exhibition winners.

just three at free fridays

Show Off Your Dance Moves with Just Three at the Free Fridays Concert Series
Friday, August 27, 8 p.m. – 10 p.m. | Bo Diddley Plaza
Downtown Gainesville 

Influenced by the Philadelphia sound of The Delfonics, The O’Jays, The Stylistics and Blue Magic, Just Three recently celebrated 40 years in the entertainment business. The dynamic group from Atlanta features 3-part vocal harmonies with smooth choreography. 

The Free Fridays Concert Series is the region’s longest-running free outdoor concert series featuring local and regional talent. Grab dinner at a downtown Gainesville restaurant, and find a cozy spot on the Bo Diddley Plaza lawn to enjoy a live music concert every Friday night through October.

phillips center

Secure Your Seats for a Top-Notch Fall Schedule with UF Performing Arts
Saturday, August 28 | UF Phillips Center3201 Hull Rd., Gainesville, FL 32611 

The upcoming UFPA schedule features artists like Davina and the Vagabonds, Brittney Spencer, Todd Barry, Jane Lynch, The Kingdom Choir and more. View FAQs and learn about the 2021 audience experience online.

yoga with little goats

Get a Triple Dose of Healthy Good Fun with Exercise, the Outdoors and Sweet Critter Companions at Yoga with Little Goats
Saturday, August 28 | Krazy Hearts Farm
14879 SW 79th Pl., Archer, FL 33470 

Find relaxation and some laughs with Downward Goat at a yoga session with baby goats. Admission is free for veterans and first responders.

wooden targets at the hatchetbury

Aim for the Bullseye at the First Anniversary of The Hatchetbury
Saturday, August 28, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. | The Hatchetbury Axe Throwing Bar

213 NW 8th Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601 

Have fun throwing axes at wooden targets as The Hatchetbury turns one. Attendees on Saturday are entered to win a $50 gift card. Music by DJ Mellowblendz starts at 7 p.m. Reserve your axe throwing lane online.

playlist at the pointe

Get Lifted Away with the Soulful Voice of TJ Brown at Playlist at the Pointe
Friday, August 27, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. | Celebration Pointe
4949 Celebration Pointe Ave., Gainesville, FL 32608

TJ Brown’s catalog of songs and musical style are inspired by country artists and old school R&B. Pull up a chair and enjoy live music from the lawn on the city walk promenade and enjoy food and drinks from nearby Celebration Pointe restaurants.

we are one concert

Swing and Jive Back to the ’50s and ’60s at the We Are One
Saturday, August 28, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. | Celebration Pointe

4949 Celebration Pointe Ave., Gainesville, FL 32608 

The summer finale of the Compassionate Music Series 2021 features classic hits and contemporary pop. Proceeds benefit the Community Hospice music therapy program in Gainesville. 

august pop up market

Browse Vintage Goods and Meet Local Farmers at the Sycamore Lane Pop-Up Market
Saturday, August 28, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. | Newberry Farmer’s Market
25370 W Newberry Rd., Newberry, FL 32669 

Shop over 30 vendors for vintage home goods, art and collectibles at the Newberry Farmer’s Market. Enjoy locally roasted Sweetwater Organic Coffee and stroll through this small town outdoor shopping experience.

florida vintage market at high dive

Find Custom Clothing, Street Wear, Sneakers and More at The Florida Vintage Market
Saturday, August 28, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. | High Dive
210 SW 2nd Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601 

The Florida Vintage Market returns to downtown Gainesville with a curated variety of vendors with live music by Dylan Schehr and food by Mystery Marsala. Find gifts or add to your wardrobe from Garage Shirts, Whole Heart Goods, Thriftsonian, Everyday in Retrograde, Caty’s Crafts and more.

century tower

Visit the Historic UF Century Tower for a Unique 61-Bell Carillon Studio Recital
Sunday, August 29, 1:55 p.m. | UF Century Tower
375 Newell Dr., Gainesville, FL 32611 

Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, Century Tower is a 157-foot carillon tower in the center of the University of Florida campus featuring 61 bells. The Tower was built in 1953 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the university and was dedicated to UF students killed in World Wars I and II. For an optimal listening experience of the Ring Out Recital, find a location at least 100 feet from the tower. View safety updates for University of Florida visitors here.

american son

Immerse Yourself in the Thought-Provoking Live Theatre Performance of “American Son”
Now through August 29 | Star Center Theatre
11 NE 23rd Ave., Gainesville, FL 32609 

Christopher Demos-Brown’s “American Son” examines America’s racial divide through the eyes of an estranged couple. Over the course of a tense night, the couple’s disparate histories and backgrounds collide as they confront an unexpected crisis involving the police and their missing 18-year-old son.

warbler at sweetwater wetlands park

Discover One of Florida’s Best Birding Hotspots at Wednesday Bird Walks at the Wetlands
Wednesday, September 1, 8:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. | Sweetwater Wetlands Park
325 SW Williston Rd., Gainesville, FL 32601 

Sweetwater Wetlands Park is located minutes from downtown Gainesville. Join the Alachua Audubon Society each week for a 2-3 hour guided walking tour. Birders of all experience levels are welcome. Meet at the entrance pavilion and bring a hat, sunscreen, water, binoculars and comfortable walking shoes. 

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Pop-Up Markets

Sitting Swan Community Market at 4th Ave Food Park
Sunday, August 29, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Arts & Theatre

Sip N’ Spin at Studio TM Ceramics
Friday, August 27, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Back in the Spotlight: The Hippodrome Theatre’s 2021-2022 Season
The Hippodrome Theatre welcomes back audiences back to the Mainstage for their 49th season.

Twirl into the 2021-2022 Season of Dance Alive National Ballet
Phantom, Nutcracker, Don Juan and Carmina Burana are just a few of the special performances in store this year from the incredible dancers of Dance Alive National Ballet.

Elements of Entertainment: Gainesville Orchestra Earth Matters 2021-2022 Season
Maestro Evans Haile creates an astounding new season of orchestral music themed to the 5 elements of life: Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Ether. 

Music & Performance

Classic Rock and Blue with Mike Johnson and Brad Burns at One Love Cafe
Thursday, August 26, 6 p.m. 

Foot Stompin’ Americana with Uncle Mosie at Lightnin’ Salvage
Thursday, August 26, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

New and old Hip-Hop with DJ Wax Atom at Arcade Bar
Thursday, August 26, 10 p.m. 

Country Music with Shawn Manley at Crafty Bastards Restaurant & Pub
Thursday, August 26, 7 p.m.

musician with guitar

Songwriters Night with Ali Patton, Kyle Keller & more at High Dive
Thursday, August 26, 8 p.m. 

Americana and Folk with Front Porch Backsteppers at 4th Ave Food Park
Friday, August 27, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. 

Acoustic Blues with Middle Ground at Lightnin’ Salvage
Friday, August 27, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Rock and Blues with Johnson/Burns at Wahoo Seafood Grill
Friday, August 27, 6 p.m. 

Classic Soul with RB Johnson at A. Quinn Jones Museum and Cultural Center
Friday, August 27, 6:30 p.m.  

Classic Rock with Moondog at Crafty Bastards Restaurant & Pub
Friday, August 27, 7 p.m. 

tamayo band members

Jam Band Tamayo at High Dive
Friday, August 27, 8 p.m. 

High-Energy Rock with Torn at Mother’s Pub North
Friday, August 27, 9 p.m.

Neon Liger Presents The Function with House, Techno and Disco at The Wooly
Friday, August 27, 10 p.m. 

Americana with Mr. Aullie at 4th Ave Food Park
Saturday, August 28, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. 

Acoustic Favorites with Bill & Miguel at One Love Cafe
Saturday, August 28, 12 p.m. 

Classics from the ‘50s and ‘60s and Contemporary Pop at the We Are One Benefit Concert at Celebration Pointe
Saturday, August 28, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. 

Blues Singer-Songwriter Cassie Evans at Lightnin’ Salvage
Saturday, August 28, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Country Music with Chris McNeil at Crafty Bastards Restaurant & Pub
Saturday, August 28, 7 p.m. 

Rock and Roll with Moonbeard at Loosey’s
Saturday, August 28, 8 p.m. 

House, Techno, Hip Hop and Top 40 with Jenie & Drew Love at Arcade Bar
Saturday, August 28, 8 p.m.

Stand-Up Comedy at the Comedian Games at High Dive
Saturday, August 28, 8 p.m.

Acoustic Duo Sylinter at Mother’s Pub North
Saturday, August 28, 9 p.m. 

Disco, House, Funk and More at Friends of Mine Tropical Disco at The Backyard at Boca Fiesta and Palomino
Saturday, August 28, 10 p.m. – 2 a.m. 

Drum and Bass with SoDown at Simons
Saturday, August 28, 10 p.m. – 2 a.m. 

Pop Punk & Emo Night of Gainesville at The Wooly
Saturday, August 28, 10 p.m. – 2 a.m. 

Classic Rock and Blues with Raftus Brown and the Melrose Horns at One Love Cafe
Sunday, August 29, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Jazz with Daniel Townsend at The Keys Grill and Piano Bar
Monday, August 30, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Open Mic Night at Lightnin’ Salvage
Wednesday, September 1, 6 p.m.

Craft Breweries

Blueberry Wine Tasting at Bluefield Estate Winery
Thursday – Frid

Open Mic Night at Big Top Brewing Company
Thursday, August 26, 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. 

Country Music with Jamie Davis and Big Lee’s Food Truck at High Springs Brewing Company
Thursday, August 26, 7 p.m.

Singer-Songwriters Michael Claytor, Sam Moss, and Jordan Burchel at Cypress & Grove Brewing Company
Friday, August 27, 7 p.m. 

Classic Rock with Cap Smith and the Hogtown Slayers and Sister’s Swank Food Truck at High Springs Brewing Company
Friday, August 27, 7 p.m.  

Country Music with Cliff Dorsey and Monsta Lobsta Food Truck at High Springs Brewing Company
Saturday, August 28, 7 p.m.

scrabble board

Scrabble Sunday at Blackadder Brewing Company
Sunday, August 29, 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. 

Brainaholics Trivia at First Magnitude Brewing Company
Tuesday, August 31, 6:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Trivia Night at Blackadder Brewing Company
Wednesday, September 1, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m.

U-Picks & Farmer’s Markets

fresh picked muscadine grapes

Muscadine Grape U-Pick at High Springs Orchard and Bakery
Thursday – Friday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday – Sunday, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Home Brewing Kombucha Workshop at High Springs Orchard and Bakery
Saturday, August 28, 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

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

One Love Cafe Local Market
Wednesdays, 4:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

GNV Market at Heartwood Soundstage
Thursdays, 5 p.m. – 8 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

Burgers, Fries and Onion Rings at Grillin’ ‘Em Softly at The Leaning Pig
Thursday, August 26, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. 

Pop-Up Wine Tasting with Downtown Wine and Cheese at The Dunbar Hotel
Thursday, August 26, 6:30 p.m. 

Wine Tasting at Superette Wine and Provisions
Thursday, August 26, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Drag Brunch at Tosh Kitchen
Saturday, August 28, 12 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 “GNV Commons” 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.


flyer for gator football tickets for sale

Gators Football Single Game Tickets Now on Sale

Gators Soccer vs. UCF
Thursday, August 26, 7 p.m. 

Intermediate/Advanced Mountain Bike Ride with Goodbike
Thursday, August 26, 7 p.m. 

Funtastic Fridays at Easton Newberry Archery Center
Friday, August 20, 5:30 p.m.

bow hunters challenge

7th Annual Bow Hunters Challenge at Easton Newberry Archery Center
Saturday, August 28, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. 

Slicks and Radials Test and Tune at Gainesville Raceway
Saturday, August 28, 4 p.m.

newberry rc park

RC Racing at Newberry RC Park
Saturday, August 28, 6 p.m. – 11 p.m. 

Gators Soccer vs. Miami
Sunday, August 29, 1 p.m.

Parks & Trails

Timed 5K at Depot Park with parkrun
Saturday, August 21, 7:30 a.m. – 9 a.m. 

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.

Museums & Galleries

Opening Reception of IF NOTHING CHANGES at UF Libby Gallery
Friday, August 27, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Spark Wonder with Expanded Hours at the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention
New Hours: Thursday – Friday, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.,
Saturday – Sunday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Learn about the invention of Gatorade in “The Sweat Solution” and find out how everyday items are manufactured at the traveling “How People Make Things” exhibit inspired by Mister Rogers’ Factory Tours. Plan your visit at

“Looking at, looking through” Exhibit Now on Display at Good News Arts
Wednesday – Saturday, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. 

Catch a Train Ride to the Past at the Waldo Historical Society Museum
Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. 

Now Open at the Harn Museum of Art: Shadow to Substance
Shadow to Substance exhibition creates a chronological arc from the past to the present into the future using historical photographs through the lens of Black photographers working today. The exhibition expands ideas around healing, myth, intimacy, joy, resistance and rebirth to create a space for visitors to see and identify with uplifting narratives shaped by an invigorated portrait of Black life. Exhibition open through February 27, 2022. 

Between Heaven & Earth – The Paintings of Alyne Harris at Thomas Center Galleries
Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. 

Discover How Everyday Items are Made at the CADE Museums Newest Exhibit and Shop
Friday – Sunday, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.  

Trailblazers: 150 Years of Alachua County Women at the Matheson History Museum
Wednesday – Saturday, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

See Live Animals in the Survival of the Slowest Exhibit at the Florida Museum
Now through September 12Museum Hours: Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Save The Date

The Currys at Heartwood Soundstage, September 3

Carson Springs Wildlife Conservation Foundation Labor Day Weekend Tours, September 4 and 6

Upstage at the Phillips Center: Davina and the Vagabonds, September 23

For a complete list of events please visit

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

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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