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On Saturday, Dec. 7, the City of Gainesville is hosting its annual Holiday Tree Lighting Celebration at the Historic Thomas Center (302 NE Sixth Ave.). At 6 p.m., attendees will gather in the Spanish Court to view the giant tree and call for it to be lit. After the tree lighting the free program runs until 8 p.m., and light refreshments will be served.

Gainesville will transform into a masterful blend of art, music and entertainment during the 38th Annual Downtown Festival & Art Show, one of the nation’s premier outdoor fine arts festivals. Presented by the City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department (PRCA), the festival draws a crowd of more than 80,000 visitors each year. On Saturday, Nov. 16 and Sunday, Nov. 17 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., visitors can meet the exhibiting artists, enjoy live music and sample international cuisine.

The Downtown Festival & Art Show, a nationally-recognized event, helps Gainesville get in touch with its creative side. Since 1996, it has ranked among the top festivals in the nation. Visitors embrace the culture of more than 240 of the nation’s most talented artists, who showcase their original oils and acrylics, vibrant watercolors, unique sculptures, dazzling jewelry, decorative ceramics and vivid photography. Artisans compete for more than $20,000 in cash prizes.

The 38th Annual Downtown Festival & Art Show is quickly approaching and the City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department is looking for individuals and organizations that would like to support this community event by volunteering at one of the top fine art shows in the country.  This is your opportunity to mingle with nationally-acclaimed artists, enjoy performing arts and sample international cuisine. This award-winning art festival features 240 of the nation’s finest artists, as well as four stages of continuous entertainment. Four-hour shifts are available on Saturday, Nov. 16 or Sunday, Nov. 17 for volunteers of all ages. Volunteers can assist at the Junior Fire Fighting Challenge, booth sit for artists, greet guests as they arrive or help with the Children’s Imagination Station, a free, hands-on art activity area. As a token of our appreciation, volunteers will receive a commemorative T-shirt.

The Progressive Rock Experience pays tribute to ‘70s progressive rock at Bo Diddley Plaza in downtown Gainesville Friday, Aug. 30 from 8-10 p.m.

The Forever Miles band featuring vocalist Phillip "JazzDad" Thomas will play at “Free Fridays” Concert Series at Bo Diddley Plaza on Friday Aug. 23.

Posted by: Rawson, Laura
8/12/2019

Only one rock concert made such a huge and lasting impression that an entire generation was named for it. Fifty years ago, more than 400,000 members of the Woodstock generation gathered in upstate New York to celebrate “three days of peace and music.”

Ramblin’ Mutts play a mixture of original and classic blues, soul and R&B, with an occasional nod to country music at “Free Fridays” on Friday, Aug. 9 at Bo Diddley Plaza in downtown Gainesville. They are performing selections from their upcoming album that pays a passionate tribute to the traditions of the soul and rhythm and blues genres. They are also playing updated reinterpretations of traditional classics by such artists as Howlin’ Wolf, B.B. King, Buddy Guy and Otis Reding that honor the legacy of this timeless music.

The Duppies are a high-powered, seven-piece band that formed in Gainesville in 2004. Since that time, this popular ska, rocksteady and reggae band has received the attention of audiences beyond the local scene by touring throughout the United States. Band members include The Duppies founder, Brian Hiebel (lead vocals/percussion), Tony Farah (bass), Ryan Bonner (keyboards), Daniel Kinney (drums), Chris Chiares (guitar) and Jose Pineiro (sax/backing vocals).

Posted by: Rawson, Laura
7/8/2019

A concert highlighting the music and significant events of 1969 will be performed at Free Fridays Friday, July 12. The show covers popular hits of 1969 such as "Bad Moon Rising," "Honkey Tonk Women," "Get Together," "This Magic Moment," "Put a Little Love in Your Heart," "Hooked on a Feeling," "Age of Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In" and more.

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