What’s Good in Gainesville and Alachua County, May 21-27, 2020

This weekend we honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our country and our way of life. If you are planning to get outside or travel during the Memorial Day weekend, you may wish to visit the Travel Safety Information page on the Visit Gainesville, Alachua County website for destination updates.

Parks and nature take center stage this weekend as the perfect locations for reflection and relaxation. Make a day of visiting the Veterans Memorial Park’s Walk Through Time tribute and enjoy a picnic with your family, take in some of nature’s spectacular displays with a stroll at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens, meander down the Santa Fe River, or take a walk on the wild side with a safari tour at the Carson Springs wildlife sanctuary. Round out your days by enjoying a live streaming performance by our local talent paired with a bite and a brew.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook for daily updates and re-shares of your inspiring photos. Tag us at #whatsgoodalachuacounty  

Please continue to be safe. We are proud to live in this mindful, resourceful and resilient community, and to share with you all that we have to offer – What’s Good.

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

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 ​County Emergency Order 2020-25.

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).

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

Alachua County Logo memorial day message

View and Listen to a Special Memorial Day Message from Alachua County Commission Chair Robert Hutchinson

Veterans Memorial at Veterans Memorial Park

Commemorate Memorial Day at Veterans Memorial Park

Memorial Day, observed Monday, May 25, honors those who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in the US military. Although the number of ways in which the public commemorates this important holiday might be limited this year, the Veterans Memorial Park, located at 7400 SW 41st Pl., Gainesville, FL 32608, is open for socially distanced visitation and features the “Walk Through Time” memorial. The memorial honors the lives lost in military conflicts from 1775 to the present. Symbolic bricks represent 1000 lives lost.

Blooming flowers at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens

Nature Still Holds Spectacular Events. Visit the Botanical Gardens and See What’s Blooming
Open Friday – Wednesday | Kanapaha Botanical Gardens
4700 SW 58th Dr., Gainesville, FL 32608

Don’t miss the mood lifting spring blooms happening right now at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens. Blood lilies and thryallis are in bloom. They only bloom for a short time, so this three-day weekend might be the perfect opportunity to check them out. 

This gorgeous and peaceful 68-acre property features 24 major plant collections and offers visitors a picturesque landscape in which to enjoy socially distanced nature and exercise accessible from a 1.5 mile paved walkway. Non-aggressive breed dogs are welcomed during non-event days and there are plenty of shaded areas to stay away from the heat. Find COVID19 safety procedures here.

Canoes paddle down the Santa Fe River

Soak Up Nature’s Beauty. Paddle the Santa Fe River and Springs
Open Daily | Santa Fe Canoe Outpost
21410 NW US Hwy. 441, High Springs, FL 32643

Wave to other paddlers from afar as you gently cruise down the Santa Fe River in your stress-free time capsule… err, we mean in your canoe, kayak or stand up paddle. All three are available for rent from the Santa Fee Canoe Outpost. Go up river for a leisurely ride back or explore several freshwater springs located downriver. Currently the outfitters are not offering pick-up and return back to camp. Be ready to paddle.

big cat at carson springs

Walk On the Wild Side with Memorial Weekend Wildlife Safari Tours
Saturday, May 23, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m., Monday, May 25, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. | Carson Springs Wildlife Conservation Foundation
8528 E CR 225, Gainesville, FL 32609

Professional zoologists lead educational two-hour tours with viewing of exotic animals. Reservations are required, email

Depot Park Nature Trail

Stay Active and Explore Parks and Trails
Bike, Hike or Just Change Your View – Explore Gainesville and Alachua County’s Bountiful Outdoor Open Spaces

Most local parks are open including all Florida State Parks.

There are over 100 miles of trails in Alachua County for biking and hiking. You can find some of the area bike trails listed here. However with many park closures, it may be difficult to figure out where you can still go for outdoor relaxation, recreation and exercise. Visit Gainesville, Alachua County has done the research for you, and provides the most up-to-date information on parks and open areas to explore. Click to find a list of open spaces, What’s Good Now.

When enjoying the outdoors, please strictly adhere to public health safety guidelines, keep 6 feet away from others and follow all State and local ordinances. Note that due to the changing environment and regulations, open hours are subject to change.

image of lunar moth. The Best Nightlife in Town

Stay Up Late and Meet the Bugs in Your Backyard with The Best Nightlife in Town Online Event
Sunday, May 23, 8:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. | Online Event with the Florida Museum of Natural History

Hang out VIRTUALLY via Zoom with Florida Museum and University of Florida entomologists and learn how to collect the coolest nocturnal bugs from your backyard! This event is FREE and open to the public.

Gainesville’s Famed Punk Band, Hot Water Music with FEST at Home
Thursday, May 21, 7:05 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Online Event with FEST

This year’s FEST headliner, Hot Water Music is this week’s guest on FEST at Home. Log-on to watch and listen to live music from Chuck Ragan and Chris Cresswell. Participate in the Q&A session with all four band members and help them build their set list for FEST 19, Oct. 30 – Nov. 2, 2020, Gainesville.

FEST hosts its 19th music festival in October featuring hundreds of bands in downtown Gainesville. In anticipation of this yearly sellout event, see live music sets from scheduled artists through the summer.

heartwood soundstage presents support local music

Heartwood Soundstage and First Magnitude Present Support Local Music Online Event
Saturday, May 23, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Support local musicians by watching a viewing a livestreamed performance and donate on a sliding scale. Saturday’s lineup features Kane Pour, Juntos and Euglossine.

Heartwood Soundstage is a state-of-the-art recording studio, video production facility, and intimate performance venue – built by musicians for music lovers and music makers. We can’t wait for our friends at Heartwood to be able to open their doors again. Until then, music fans can enjoy a little of the Heartwood Soundstage and friends magic via their virtual listening experiences.

Labels for It Takes A Village

Make Your Own Brewery Tour and Look for “It Takes A Village”

Gainesville breweries collaborate annually to create a one of kind beer, “It Takes a Village.” Create your own Gainesville brew tour and find which of these IPA’s is your favorite by visiting Blackadder, Cypress & Grove (available Friday), First Magnitude and Swamp Head breweries and picking up this special release brew.

Giant sunflowers at Rogers Farm

Walk Through a Field of Sunflowers and Bring Home Your Own Bouquet
Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sunday, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. | Roger’s Farm3831 NW 156th Ave., Gainesville, FL 32609

Make a trip to Roger’s Farm to take photos and pick giant sunflowers from the field.


GNV Live hosts Joshua Mazur

3 Time ‘Most Promising Male Singer’ Operatic Tenor Joshua Mazur performs on Gainesville LIVE! 
Friday, May 22, 8 p.m.
Gainesville LIVE!, a live streaming concert series, debuts Joshua Mazur. Joshua, winner of TBNATS “Most Promising Male Singer” award three consecutive years and Florida state winner of the NATS Artist Award, will bring Broadway into your home. Josh will perform songs from Phantom of the Opera, Oklahoma!, Company, Finian’s Rainbow, and more!

This concert is brought to you by the City of Gainesville in partnership with MusicGNV, a program of Self Narrate, Inc.

Gainesville LIVE! is brought to you by, the City of Gainesville as a temporary way to share with the public the joy of the Free Fridays Concert Series. The series typically takes place from May to October when hundreds of visitors and locals head to the Bo Diddley Plaza in downtown Gainesville to listen and dance to a superb assembly of bands and talented musicians. It is the region’s longest running free outdoor live music series.

Latin Beats with Elio Piedra Live on the Patio at Hurricane BTW
Friday, May 22, 6 p.m.

Classic Rock with Moondog Live at Crafty Bastards Restaurant & Pub
Friday, May 22, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Singer Songwriter Shawn Manley Live at Crafty Bastards Restaurant & Pub
Saturday, May 23, 7 p.m.  – 10 p.m.


May is American Cheese Month
Local handcrafted Hawthorne Creek Creamery cheese pick up at Cypress & Grove Brewing Company
Pre-order cheese by Wednesdays, 5 p.m. Pick up Thursdays, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

AMA (Ask Me Anything) with Meg The Losen, Co-Founder of First Magnitude Brewing Company and more online at First Magnitude Brewing Company
Thursday, May 21, 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

$6 Burger Mondays at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Monday, May 25, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Taco Tuesday at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Tuesday, May 26, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Virtual Brainaholics Trivia by First Magnitude Brewing Company
Tuesday, May 26, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Team Trivia Wednesdays at Big Top Brewing Company Gainesville
Wednesday, May 27, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Package Takeout:
Growler Fills and Kegs from Cypress & Grove Brewing Company

To-go Cans from Swamp Head Brewery

Drive-Thru Beer Pick Up at First Magnitude Brewing Company

Growler Fills and 32 oz. Crowlers at Blackadder Brewing Company

To-Go Cans from Big Top Brewing Company

Growler Fills at High Springs Brewing Company

Sangria, Wines and more at Island Grove Wine Company Tasting House


Now Open: Mr. and Mrs Crab Seafood 
3246 SW 35th Blvd., Gainesville, FL 32608
Order online at
With multiple locations in Florida, Mr. and Mrs. Crab is now open in Gainesville, featuring Louisiana-style seafood boils with Szechuan spices for a unique dining experience.

mixologist preparing drinks

Gainesville’s Top Bartenders Present the Mixology of Popular Cocktails online at Cade at Night

Traditional Italian Dinner Cooking Class at The Fat Tuscan
Thursday, May 21, 6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Some restaurants are slowly opening their dining rooms or providing outdoor patio seating. Please contact restaurants for additional information and any service changes. Find a searchable list of Alachua County restaurants here.


fresh produce at Bambi's Cafe farm stand

Strawberry U-Pick and Food Market at Frog Song Organics
Thursday, May 21, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Farm Stand Fridays at Bambi’s Café
Friday, May 22, 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Farm Stand at The Family Garden
Friday, May 22, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m., Saturday, May 23, 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Drive-Thru Farmer’s Market CSA at Working Food
Wednesdays, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m., Saturdays 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.

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

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

Newberry Farmer’s Market
Saturdays, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.

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

Grove Street Farmer’s Market at Cypress & Grove Brewing Company 
Mondays, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.


GFAA Gallery Online Exhibit: EARTH

Covid-19 Community Archive from the Matheson History Museum

View Online Classes and Activities presented by the Cade Museum

Take a Virtual Museum Tour with the Greatest Hits from Florida Museum of Natural History


Top Fuel Racecar with flames shooting out of it on the race track. #Gatornats

AMALIE Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals
September 25-27

Paula Poundstone laying horizontal on a stool

Paula Poundstone
August 27

For a complete list of events please visit

What's Good Alachua County

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Tickets are available while supplies last and will not be held. 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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