Celebrate the Season with Holiday Events in Gainesville and Alachua County 2022

Stroll among twinkling lights, watch special holiday performances, find unique gifts at holiday markets. Explore local shopping destinations for selfie-friendly light displays and seasonal sales. Plan your holidays with our list of festive upcoming events in Gainesville and Alachua County.

For more great events and activities visit the Flagler Award-winning What’s Good weekly event guide.

history and hoidays guided tours

History and Holidays Guided Tours at Historic Haile Homestead
Saturday, December 31, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Once a year, Historic Haile Homestead gets decorated for the holidays. Learn about the 1856 homestead, the Haile family and the laborers who lived and worked there.


Spark Wonder 2023 at the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention
Saturday, December 31, 5:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Reflect, celebrate, and anticipate the New Year with the Cade Museum. Watch Depot Park’s spectacular firework show from the comfort of the Cade’s galleries with a drink and snacks in hand. This family-friendly event will feature games and experiments, an alternate time zone countdown, glow party, New Year’s Resolutions, a photo booth, and more.

Fireworks over Depot Park

Sparks in the Park at Depot Park
Saturday, December 31, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Enjoy the sunset at Depot Park with a DJ-hosted family-friendly dance party. The evening concludes with musically choreographed fireworks at 6:30 p.m.

Downtown Countdown at Bo Diddley Plaza
Saturday, December 31, 9 p.m. – 12:30 a.m.
Ring in the new year with live music from the Bo Diddley Plaza stage with the 24-7 Band and Jackquelyn Graham.

NYE dance party at heartwood soundstage

A Gainesville Homecoming New Year’s Eve Dance Party at Heartwood Soundstage
Saturday, December 31, 7 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Ring in the New Year at South Main Station and Miami’s DJ A-Train. Start your evening with dinner at Bingo Deli & Pub or Humble Woodfire, then get ready to move with dance classics from every decade. Champagne toast and countdown at midnight. General admission and VIP tickets are available online.

nye ball at the wooly

NYE Ball at The Wooly
Saturday, December 31, 8:30 p.m. – 1:45 a.m.
Dress to impress and ring in the new year with The Savants of Soul and a champagne toast at midnight.

New Year’s Eve Masquerade at The Backyard at Boca Fiesta and Palomino
Saturday, December 31, 8 p.m. – 2 a.m.

5-Course New Year’s Eve Celebration Dinner at Embers Wood Grill
Saturday, December 31, 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.

NYE Cocktail Bash at Spark at Embers
Saturday, December 31, 9 p.m. – 12 a.m.

ring ring ring

Ring Ring Ring in the New Year with Video Games, Appetizer Buffet and more at Dave and Buster’s
Saturday, December 31, 9 p.m. – 1 a.m.

send 2022 out in style

Celebration Pointe Hosts Live Music on the Promenade, Dinner and Music at Prime and Pearl, Buffet at Spurriers Gridiron Grille, NYE Party at Visor’s Rooftop and Dinner and Music at The Keys Grill and Piano Bar
Saturday, December 31, 3 p.m. – 2 a.m.


Go Birding on The Big Day Alachua Audubon Field Trip to Sweetwater Wetlands and Beyond
Sunday, January 1, 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Gainesville is one of the Country’s top inland birding destinations, and Sweetwater Wetland Park is an ideal spot to view up to 100 species of our feathered friends. Join chapter vice president Tim Hardin for the first birding trip of the year. Meet at Sweetwater Wetlands Park to start your 2023 birding list with a bang. Participants have the option to progress to other sites and may be able to spot over 100 species.

first day hike

Kick Off the New Year with a First Day Hike at a Florida State Park
Sunday, January 1, 10 a.m. | Bolen Bluff Trail Entrance at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park
South of the Hwy. 441 Eco-Passage

Get outside and take a hike on the first day of the new year. Wear comfortable shoes and bring a water bottle to a local trail. On New Year’s Day, State Parks across the country will once again be celebrating with First Day Hikes. These hikes provide a means for individuals and families to welcome the coming year in the outdoors, exercising and connecting with nature. For many it has become a tradition.

Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park hosts a 2-mile ranger tour starting at 10 a.m. at the Bolen Bluff Trail entrance. Look across the prairie from Visitor Center and observation tower. Stroll over Alachua Sink and see alligators from the raised boardwalk at La Chua Trail.

Additional Florida State Parks offer a variety of outdoor experiences. Step back in time to a working 1800s farm at Dudley Farm Historic State Park. Visit the 1930s homestead of a Pulitzer Prize-winning author at Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park. See where the Santa Fe River disappears underground at O’Leno State Park. Step down into the 120-foot sinkhole at Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park. Explore the scenic hiking trails at San Felasco Hammock Preserve State Park.

New Year’s Day Race at High Springs BMX
Sunday, January 1, 2:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

birds and brews

Pair Craft Beer with a Guided Bird Walk at Birds and Brews at First Magnitude Brewing Company
Sunday, January 1, 4:15 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Join volunteers from Alachua Audubon Society at First Magnitude Brewing Company for a New Year’s Day nature walk to Depot Park. The hour-long walks return to the brewery to grab a nightcap. Admission is free.

Get your free Sippin’ Seven Alachua County Ale Trail digital pass and earn rewards for visiting First Magnitude Brewing Company.


Mannheim Steamroller Christmas at UF O’Connell Center
Thursday, November 17, 7:30 p.m.

Light Up Celebration Point at their Annual Tree Lighting
Friday, November 18, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m.

31st Annual Tree Lighting at Shoppes at Thornebrook
Saturday, November 19, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Cane Boil and Fiddlefest at Morningside Nature Center
Saturday, November 26, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

The O’Connell Center Craft Festival 2022 at UF O’Connell Center
Saturday, November 26, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Holiday Mimosas Sip and Shop at Artisans’ Guild Gallery
Sunday, November 27, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

City of Alachua Tree Lighting at Skinner Field
Friday, December 2, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Self-Guided Holiday Art Tour at Artwalk Gainesville
Friday, December 2, 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.

“Holiday at Santa Fe” at the Jackson N. Sasser Fine Arts Hall
Saturday, December 3, 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Holiday Lights Celebration at the Historic Thomas Center
Saturday, December 3, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Christkindlmarkt at Blackadder Brewing Company
Friday, December 2 – Saturday, December 3, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

High Springs Annual Tree Lighting
Saturday, December 3, 6 p.m.

Hawthorne Christmas Festival in Downtown Hawthorne
Saturday, December 3, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Festival of Trees 2022 at Gainesville Woman’s Club
Saturday, December 3, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Sycamore Lane Vintage Christmas Market in Historic Downtown Newberry
Saturday, December 3, 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Operation Santa Delivery at Santa Fe College North Field
Saturday, December 3, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Holiday Party and Make Fest at Good News Arts
Saturday, December 3, 12 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Fall Farm and Cane Festival at Dudley Farm
Saturday, December 3, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Kids Holiday Dance Party at Bo Diddley Plaza
Saturday, December 3, 4 p.m. – 5 p.m.

High Springs Annual Tree Lighting
Saturday, December 3, 6 p.m.

Parade of Lights at Archer Christmas Celebration
Saturday, December 3, 6:30 p.m.

City of Newberry Christmas Tree Lighting in the Gingerbread Village
Saturday, December 3, 6 p.m.

Carillon Studio Holiday Recital at UF Century Tower
Sunday, December 4, 1:55 p.m.

74th Annual UF School of Music Sounds of the Season at UF Phillips Center
Sunday, December 4, 7 p.m.

GLAM Craft Show at First Magnitude Brewing Company
Sunday, December 4, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

tenThing Brass Ensemble Holiday Concert at UF Phillips Center
Tuesday, December 6, 7:30 p.m.

2022 UF Poinsettia Sale at UF Horticultural Greenhouse
Thursday, December 8 – Friday, December 9, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Winter Choir Concert at St Augustine Church and Catholic Student Center
Friday, December 9, 7 p.m.

Danscompany presents Cinderella at UF Phillips Center
Friday, December 9, 7 p.m., Saturday, December 10, 1 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Holiday Market and Open House at Shoppes at Thornebrook
Friday, December 9, 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.

2nd Annual Micanopy Holiday Stroll
Saturday, December 10, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Main Street Alachua Christmas Parade
Saturday, December 10, 2 p.m.

High Springs Candy Cane Christmas Parade
Saturday, December 10, 3 p.m.

Concierto de Navidad por la North Florida SDA Orchestra at Bo Diddley Plaza
Saturday, December 10, 10 a.m.

Concierto de Navidad por la North Florida SDA Orchestra at Bo Diddley Plaza
Saturday, December 10, 10 a.m.

Christmas at Butler at Butler Town Center
Saturday, December 10, 4 p.m. – 7:15 p.m.

Holiday Pride! at Pride Community Center
Sunday, December 11, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Light Up Tioga Annual Tree Lighting and Holiday Festival at Tioga Town Center
Sunday, December 11, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Alachua County Youth Orchestra Winter Concert at UF Philips Center
Sunday, December 11, 7 p.m.

Young Annasemble Holiday Concert at The Historic Thomas Center
Monday, December 12, 7 p.m.

La Balooza Hot Air Balloon Festival at Gainesville Raceway
Friday, December 16 – Saturday, December 17

The City of Alachua and Dance Alive National Ballet Present Nutcracker Under the Stars at Legacy Park
Friday, December 16, 7 p.m.

A Christmas Story at High Springs Playhouse
Now through Sunday, December 18

Dance Alive National Ballet Presents The Nutcracker at UF Phillips Center
Saturday, December 17, 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Sunday, December 18, 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Dance Alive National Ballet Presents Ballet Dance Class with Clara
Saturday, December 17, 4 p.m., – Sunday, December 18, 4 p.m.

Downtown High Springs Holiday Artwalk
Saturday, December 17, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Shop, Dine and Stroll at Holiday Night on Main Street Alachua 
Saturday, December 17, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

6th Annual Christmas on the Square at CountryWay Town Square
Saturday, December 17, 6 p.m.

36th Annual Veterans for Peace Winter Solstice Concert at Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
Saturday, December 17, 8 p.m.

Grand Chanukah Celebration and Giant Menorah Lighting at Bo Diddley Plaza
Wednesday, December 21, 5 p.m.

Christmas with the Currys at Heartwood Soundstage
Wednesday, December 21, 7 p.m.

Eat. Drink. Be Ugly. 6th Annual Ugly Sweater Contest at Blackadder Brewing Company
Thursday, December 22, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Murder for Two Holiday Edition at the Hippodrome Theatre
Now through Thursday, December 22

(sold out) Holiday Wine Pairing and Chef Dinner at The Fat Tuscan
Friday, December 23, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Christmas Tours at Carson Springs Wildlife
Saturday, December 24, 10 a.m., Monay, December 26, 1 p.m.

A History of Kwanzaa with Kali Blount at A. Quinn Jones Museum & Cultural Center
Tuesday, December 27, 5:30 p.m.