I never go shopping the day after Thanksgiving. Crowded stores are the worst. Plus overall we keep our shopping pretty modest due to the fact that it is insanely expensive to buy everyone you know a present at the same time. But this year, as we've explored Gainesville, I've been keeping a mental checklist of some spots to do our little holiday shopping and so now I'm excited to make a day out of it. One thing that has been consistent with some of the town's museums and attractions is that they have excellent gift shops. So here is the line up:
- Kanapaha Botanical Garden's Gift Shop
(and a stroll through the gardens)
- Harn Museum of Art
(they have great toys here)
- Florida Museum of Natural History
(they have two gift shops, one is dedicated solely to butterflies)
- Ward's Supermarket
(everyone is getting a bag of Gainesville's own Sweetwater Organic Coffee
this year, sorry for the spoiler family!)
- Lightnin' Salvage Enterprises
(their toys, t-shirts, and Florida souvieners are the best, plus there is the added bonus of delicious pizza and music to finish our day of "shopping" off properly).
Other suggestions are welcome...
Funny, smart, interesting, informative, and free. As their web site states, "The Fine Print
is an alternative bimonthly publication based in Gainesville, FL. [Their] mission is to serve the Gainesville community by providing an independent outlet for political, social, and arts coverage through original, local and in-depth reporting."
These photos of current articles show the range of topics. Other regular features include short fictional stories, articles related to planning issues in Gainesville, city farming, and current events.
I have been thinking about socially responsible Xmas shopping so their article was timely to me.
Go to The Jones Eastside
for breakfast and pick up a copy.
I have been away from Gainesville a lot lately. On a weekend trip to St. Pete Beach and this week attending the Equity Summit
in Detroit while getting in some much needed time with friends and family in the chilly Midwest. Mister Rock Star has come along for the ride and has been enjoying the change of pace, and doting relatives, as well. But it means missing some great events around town. So here is another blind date recommendation, the 30th Annual Downtown Festival and Art Show
, which is happening this Saturday and Sunday (11/12 & 11/13). Check it out and tell us how it is!
The cutest little airport. If you've ever had to navigate the gnarly airports of the northeast you will love Gainesville Regional Airport
. American Airlines/American Eagle, Delta, and US Airways all run regular flights out of this small, friendly, and convenient airport located in NW Gainesville off 39th Avenue. Yes, I said friendly and convenient! We are a one car household so making the trek to a larger airport means a major inconvenience of either one person making a 3-4 hour round trip for the drop-off/pick-up, or the hassle of renting a car for the traveler. Ever since I made the 10 minute drive to pick up PB from a trip and was easily able to stop the car to load the luggage without getting honked at or moved along by airport police, I have been so glad that we gave this airport a chance.
Other bonuses include $9/per day parking. Friendly taxi drivers. Extremely clean facilities. And, what's becoming a small comfort to me on early morning flights, hearty wheat toast and coffee for $5 from the snack bar.
It took some convincing to get a family member from the northern U.S. to fly into Gainesville but after she did she exclaimed, "Now that I know how easy it is, I'll always fly into Gainesville to see you!"
I have visited The Church of Holy Colors
working art space before
, but couldn't make it to their last show and unfortunately can't make it to their upcoming event on November 5th, so this is sort of a blind date recommendation. What I do know is that the artists-in-residence (Evan Galbicka, Joey Fillastre, and Felici Asteinza) are wonderful and that a night of art and music is always a good thing.