What’s Good in Gainesville and Alachua County, January 28 – February 3, 2021

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The final weekend in January is filled with local flavor. Create memorable moments by immersing yourself in local cuisine at the Table for Two dinner at the Wooly, featuring craft beer paired with a delectable menu from local favorite, The Top. Tempt your taste buds at the Original Gainesville Food Truck Rally at High Dive, or take something “souper” to-go, like boxes containing 20 cups of different soups prepared by a local chef at the 14th Annual Souper Fun Sunday.

Heartwood Soundstage and Swamp Records present the first performance of the Indie Live outdoor concert series. Find yourself at the edge of your seat with Gainesville Community Playhouse’s Eclipsed or tap your toes with the musical The Wiz at Legacy Park.

We are proud to live in this mindful, resourceful and resilient community, and to share with you all that we have to offer. Read on for more of What’s Good.

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, certain types of businesses require masks. Masks or face coverings are also required when social distancing is not possible. For additional details on the requirement as well as any exemption information please read the latest Alachua County Emergency Order.

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).

indie live at heartwood

Get Ready for an Indie Music Night Outdoors Featuring Faze Wave and the Driptones, at Heartwood’s New Concert Series
Saturday, January 30, 9:30 p.m. – 12 a.m. | Heartwood Soundstage
619 S Main St., Gainesville, FL 32601

Known for their impeccable attention to sound production and for delivering high-quality, intimate performances featuring exceptional artists, Heartwood Soundstage presents the first show of their new socially distanced outdoor indie music concerts. Indie Live kicks off this Saturday, with Faze Wave, an upbeat alternative band from Jacksonville and Driptones, a rising Gainesville indie quartet. The series is co-presented by Heartwood and Swamp Records. Masks are required.

frogwatch usa

Become a Citizen Scientist Online at the FrogWatch USA Training Workshop 
Thursday, January 28, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m., Monday, February 1, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. | Online Event with Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo

Presented in part by the Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo, FrogWatch USA is a citizen science program of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) that offers an opportunity to learn local wetlands, identify frog calls and to report data. No previous frog or science background is necessary. Ages 10 and up are welcome. Pre-register for the online workshop here.

The Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo is open 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. daily. Travel the quarter-mile shaded trail and visit the diverse collection of native and exotic animals including otters, alligators, tree kangaroos and more. Learn about safety guidelines here.


Experience a Gripping Play of Survival and Transformation at the Final Weekend of Eclipsed
Now through Sunday, January 31 | Gainesville Community Playhouse
4039 NW 16th Blvd., Gainesville, FL 32605

Their lives set on a nightmarish detour by civil war, the captive wives of a Liberian rebel officer form a hardscrabble sisterhood. With wit, compassion, and defiance, Eclipsed unearths the wreckage of war and celebrates the women who navigate and survive the most hostile of circumstances.

Eclipsed is performed live, on stage at the Gainesville Community Playhouse. Founded in 1927, GCP is one of Florida’s oldest community theatres. In 2006, the playhouse moved into their present facility, the 210-seat Vam York Theater.

aloft valentines offer

Relish in sweet treats, a bottle of wine, flowers and late check-out with your loved one by booking the Valentine’s Day Special at the Aloft Hotel by Marriott.

🌹 To redeem this special offer, reservations must be made by February 5 by sending an email or calling (352) 415-3951.

Enjoy a modern, urban inspired room featuring a walk-in rainfall shower, custom bath amenities by Bliss Spa, and plug & play so all your electronics charge and link to the TV. The in-room coffee, 55 inch TV and ultra-comfortable plush beds, in addition to your Valentine treats, will make it hard to ever leave!

The Aloft Gainesville is centrally located with easy access to the University of Floridanumerous museums, and Celebration Pointe and Butler Plaza shops and restaurants.

Also, keep an eye-out in next week’s What’s Good guide for more ideas for celebrating Valentine’s Day and spending time with that special someone.

Aloft Gainesville is a Safe Stay Property, making sure guest safety is of utmost importance so you can enjoy your stay while knowing your room meets the highest standards for cleanliness.

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.

table for two beer dinner

Savor Local Dining Paired with Craft Beer at Table For Two Beer Dinner Featuring The TOP and Halpatter Brewing Company
Friday, January 29, 6:30 p.m. | The Wooly
20 N Main St., Gainesville, FL 32601

The Wooly Event Space hosts a special four-course dinner prepared by The TOP and paired with five selections from Halpatter Brewing Company. The first course is a fitting prelude to the dining experience to follow, featuring a white bean puree with harissa and crispy prosciutto paired with O’leno Cream Ale. Reserve your seats and preview the menu here.

gators gymnastics

(Sold Out) See the #1 Ranked Gators Gymnastics Team Compete Against Missouri
Friday, January 29, 6:45 p.m. | Exactech Arena at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center
250 Gale Lemerand Dr., Gainesville, FL 32611

After a thrilling victory at Arkansas last week, the Gators strive for perfection as they host the Missouri Tigers. Remaining meets on February 19 vs. Kentucky (Link to Pink) and February 26 vs. Auburn are now sold out, catch the action on the SEC Network and ESPN+.

the wiz

(sold out) Follow the Yellow Brick Road on an Adventure from a Kansas Farm to the Emerald City at The Wiz
Saturday, January 30, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. | Legacy Park Multipurpose Center
15400 Peggy Rd., Alachua, FL 32615

The City of Alachua in partnership with the Star Center Theatre presents the critically acclaimed Off-Broadway show “The Wiz”.
Join Dorothy on a journey from a Kansas farm to the Emerald City and meet the Scarecrow, Tin Man and Cowardly Lion. The Wiz is a modern musical retelling of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Admission is free but pre-registration is required here.

race car at import face off

See Exotic Cars Compete at the Import Face Off
Sunday, January 31, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. | Gainesville Raceway
11211 N County Rd. 225, Gainesville, FL 32609

The national car show and drag racing series returns to Gainesville. Competitions include best in class, drag racing, burnouts, low car limbo and two-step. 

dancing with masks

Learn to Dance the Romantic Bachata in the Streets of Gainesville with Bachata Boulevard, Presented by Salsa in the Streets
Thursday, January 28, 8:30 p.m. – 11 p.m. | The Bull
18 SW 1st Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601

Dance to Latin music with bachata, salsa and kizomba. If you don’t know how to dance or want to brush up on your steps, get there early for free dance classes from Gator Salsa Club at 6 p.m. and 7:15 p.m. Dancing is free, with drinks available from The Bull. Masks are required.

food truck rally at high dive

Temp Your Taste Buds with a Variety of Tasty Foods at the Original Gainesville Food Truck Rally
Saturday, January 30, 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. | High Dive
210 SW 2nd Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601

Food trucks from across the area and beyond serve up unique, gourmet style fare at this one-of-a-kind local event. Vegetarian options available. Vendors include Crave BBQ, Monsta Lobsta, Off the Griddle, Vegan Gator and more. Inside High Dive, enjoy a free concert with local music from Thomas Allain & The Late Night Loses, The Medicine Show, J.A.C. and Ava Mothersill. 

souper fun sunday

Sample Gainesville’s Best Soups at the 14th Annual Souper Fun Sunday Competition
Sunday, January 31, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. | Saint Francis Catholic Academy
4100 NW 115th Terr., Gainesville, FL 32606

Foodies get your slurp on! This year, tickets will be sold in advance for boxes containing 20 cups of different soups prepared by a local chef. Soups will be picked up at the drive-through located on Saint Francis campus. Each box includes details and information from the chef and restaurant. After tasting your soups, help determine the winner by voting online. Tickets are available here.

sweded film fest

Watch Low Budget No Budget Remakes of Film Classics at Gainesville Cinemadrome Sweded Film Fest
Saturday, January 30, 8 p.m. | The Backyard at Boca Fiesta
232 SE 1st St., Gainesville, FL 32601

See the screening of films created for this unique film festival. Local teams of filmmakers and friends set out to create 5-minute remakes of film favorites without a budget. Classic scenes, costumes and even music are reimagined. It’s not all fun and games though, as films are recognized for coveted Cinemadrome awards. The event will also stream live on Twitch here.

hoggetowne at home

Until You Can Feast and Celebrate with the Crowds Inside the Castle Walls of the Hoggetowne, Get Your Annual Dose of Medieval Magic with Hoggetowne at Home
Saturday, January 30 – Sunday, January 31, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. | Online Event with Hoggetowne Medieval Faire

One of Gainesville’s signature annual events, the Hoggetowne Medieval Faire returns virtually. Shop the medieval marketplace, watch demonstrations and performances and engage with a wonderful cast of characters during live shows. Admission is free. Get a preview of artisans and performances on Facebook.

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

Actors’ Warehouse Presents The Blue Period of Milton van der Spuy, Available Online 
Now through February 7
The Blue Period of Milton van der Spuy is a bittersweet tale of a would-be Renaissance man who hopes his head won’t explode before he’s able to complete his life’s work. The problem: Milton is a small man with big dreams (far more ambitious than he is talented). The play is Gentle and comically quirky, until in the end it isn’t. It invites us into the world of Milton’s family and social milieu, his views on everything from Shakespeare to Da Vinci’s flying machines to the Boy Scouts and ultimately, to his own role as deus ex machina.

Music & Performance

Rock and Blues Mike Johnson at One Love Cafe
Thursday, January 28, 6 p.m.

The Barstool Prophets on the Patio at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Friday, January 29, 6 p.m.

tim mcgraw music tribute

Tim McGraw Tribute Show at Knockin’ Boots Saloon
Friday, January 29, 8 p.m. – 1 a.m.

Soul, R&B, Jazz, Funk and Pop Hits with Fast Lane at One Love Cafe
Friday, January 29, 6 p.m.

Local Hip-Hop Showcase at High Dive
Friday, January 29, 9 p.m.

Classic Rock with 4PLAY at Mother’s Pub & Grill North Gainesville
Friday, January 29, 9 p.m. – 12 a.m.

Rock and Blues with Whiskey Jones Rocks at One Love Cafe
Saturday, January 30, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Rock and Blues with Cassie Evans at Lightnin’ Salvage
Saturday, January 30, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Classic Rock and Country Covers with Doc Adams Band on the Patio at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Saturday, January 30, 6 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Motown, Classic Rock, Blues, Jazz and Swing Raftus with the Melrose Horns at One Love Cafe
Sunday, January 31, 11 a.m.

Smooth Rock with LD50 on the Patio at The Great Outdoors Restaurant
Sunday, January 31, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Craft Breweries

swamp head brewery

Stitch and Sip at High Springs Brewing Company
Thursday, January 28, 6 p.m.

Rock and Blues with Cassie Evans at High Springs Brewing Company
Friday, January 29, 7 p.m.

Salsero Saturdays at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Saturday, January 30, 8 p.m. – 12 a.m.

Brainaholics Trivia at First Magnitude Brewing Company
Tuesday, February 2, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

U-Picks & Farmer’s Markets

strawberries at rogers farm

U-Pick Strawberries at Roger’s Farm
Thursday, January 28 – Friday, January 29, 11 a.m. – 4 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

rapini pizza

Wine Tasting at Downtown Wine and Cheese
Thursday, January 28, 6:15 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Tiramisu Dessert Cooking Class at the Fat Tuscan
Wednesday, February 3, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Dine at Local Restaurants and Enjoy New Outside Seating Options
Some restaurants are welcoming diners back into their dining rooms. You may also notice additional outdoor seating expanded onto sidewalks, into parking lots or into the street. Pictured above: rapini pizza from Pleasant Street Pizza.

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.


gators mens basketball

Gators Men’s Basketball vs. South Carolina
Wednesday, February 3, 6:30 p.m.

Mountain Bike Rides with Goodbike
Tuesday, January February 2, 7 p.m., Brisk Pace for the Advanced Rider

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

Winter Show at Mott-May Gallery
Now through March 28

Florida Museum NEA Big Read Children’s Book Meetup: Evelyn the Adventurous Entomologist
Saturday, January 30, 11 a.m.

Explore Florida’s History and Walk With Flying Butterflies at the Florida Museum
Open Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Browse Galleries Featuring Over 600 Works Virtually at the Harn Museum of Art
Open Thursday – 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.

Solo Exhibition by Ashley Ortiz-Diaz “Anyway, I love you and I wish you weren’t dead” at Good News Arts
Open Wednesdays-Saturdays, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Spark Dialog with the “Lights of Conversation” Outdoor Illuminated Poetry Verse Exhibit at the Matheson History Museum
On display daily

Save The Date

High Springs Playhouse Presents Barefoot in the Park, February 5

Black History Month Streaming Concert Series, February 12, 19 and 26

Valentine’s Day Beer and Cookie Pairing at Swamp Head Brewery, February 13

Heartwood Soundstage Music Festival V, February 27

NHRA Amalie Oil Gatornationals, March 11-14

March, April and May Outdoor Concert Series at Legacy Park Amphitheater, March 19-21

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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