living in gainesville

GainesvilleArea Information

Area Information

Gainesville Arts and Culture

Performing Arts

Gainesville has a constant theatrical presence in the area, with a variety of productions scheduled year-round.

The Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts has entertained Gainesville with a diverse group of artists and attractions since opening in January 1992. It is located on the University of Florida campus next to the Harn Museum of Art.

Hippodrome State Theatre – One of the four state-supported theatres in Florida, the Hippodrome has entertained local audiences while gaining national acclaim. The theatre is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and once was the home of the United States Post Office in the downtown area. The building is a fine example of Palladium Classical Revival Architecture. The Hippodrome produces eight contemporary theatrical productions a year, including numerous first productions by acclaimed playwrights. The building also houses an art gallery and a cinema theater.

Gainesville Community Playhouse – As the state’s oldest community theatre, this group has been in continuous production since 1927 and performs six works each year in a refurbished 160-seat theatre.

H. P. Constans Theatre – Located on the University of Florida campus, Constans Theatre is home to the Florida Players and the University Box Office. The student-run theatrical group has provided the area with quality productions since 1932.

Dance Theatre of Santa Fe – Students produce several plays each year at Santa Fe Community College.

Acrosstown Repertory Theatre – Performing at the historic Baird Center, the 80-seat community theatre has a diverse repertoire of productions, including the classics, experimental and avant-garde performances.

Newcomers will enjoy the musical diversity of Gainesville. The Gainesville Chamber Orchestra, the Gainesville Civic Chorus, the Gainesville Community Band, the University Marching and Concert Bands and the University Symphony Orchestra frequently perform concerts. Jazz concerts are sponsored by the Gainesville Friends of Jazz and Blues. Professional performers of all musical styles are regular visitors to the University of Florida campus throughout the year.

Dance Alive! – This professional ballet company performs at various theaters in Gainesville, statewide and across the country. Performances have included Swan Lake, The Nutcracker and Don Quixote.

Gainesville Ballet Theatre – This group performs classical ballet, children’s ballet, jazz and modern dance and was founded in 1973. The Gainesville Ballet Theatre performs two ballets each season at the Center for Performing Arts, including The Little Match Girl.

Florida Museum of Natural History – Florida’s official natural history museum is home to more than 25 million specimens and artifacts. Located on the University of Florida campus, the museum is one of the 10 most comprehensive natural history museums in the nation.

The Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art – Located on the UF campus, the Harn is one of the largest university art museums in the Southeast U.S. Its permanent collections feature American, African pre-Columbian, Asian and contemporary works of art. The Harn is also home to Champ d’avoine (Oat Field), an important 1890 work by French Impressionist painter Claude Monet.

Thomas Center and Galleries – Considered Gainesville's cultural center, the Thomas Center is housed in a beautifully restored Mediterranean Revival-style hotel. It’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and features art galleries, 1920's period rooms, local history exhibits, performance space and meeting rooms. Owned by the City of Gainesville, the center is the site of a variety of art exhibits and musical programs.

Historic Sites

Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings State Historic Site – Visitors to this site can tour the original small cracker farm in rural Cross Creek in which author Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings found inspiration.

Matheson Historical Center – This museum and botanical garden showcases the history of Gainesville, Alachua County and North Florida through historic photographs and books.
Festival and Events

The area enjoys a kaleidoscope of festivals spread throughout the year. Zucchini and watermelon festivals, renaissance fairs and craft shows are just a sampling. The City of Gainesville’s Downtown Festival and Art Show will celebrate its 27th year in 2008. This highly acclaimed event has been rated in the top 200 best shows in the country by Sunshine Artist Magazine. The Santa Fe Community College Spring Arts Festival, which attracts more than 100,000 art lovers annually, is the largest of its kind in North Central Florida.

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Cost of Living

The cost of living index is based on the composite price of groceries, housing, utilities, transportation, health care, clothing and entertainment.

Cost of living indexes will generally be higher in areas that offer access to beaches, culture, arts and recreation. In addition areas, that offer a wider variety of services such as health and education will run higher due to higher wages, and increased quality of living.

Our cost of living indices are based on a US average of 100. An amount below 100 means Gainesville, FL is cheaper than the US average. A cost of living index above 100 means Gainesville, FL is more expensive.

Overall, Gainesville, FL cost of living is 90.84.

Cost of living indexing explanation
A figure of 100 points is used as an average both for the USA and Florida. For example:
Boise Idaho is ranked at a 99
Boston Mass is rated at 240
San Francisco at 217
Statewide, Florida cities come in from a low of 90 and up.
One way to compare Florida areas to salary requirements

For example-If you were relocating from Portland Oregon (whose rate 1s 94.0) to Orlando, and you currently make $50,000 per year, the formula is as follows
Take the destination index, in this case Orlando-94.0 and divide by Portland’s index-120, then multiply by a salary of $50,000. This will give you a figure of $39,166 which would be required to make in Orlando to have the same quality of life.
See comparable Florida statewide
* Re cost of living--in some areas Real Estate has went up dramatically however costs that factor in such as food, transportation, rents etc have not increased at the same rate-so in some areas, even though housing is expensive, the overall rating may still be low

2007 stats per Sperlings best Places

Boca Raton-154.74
Cape Coral-Ft Myers-108.0
Ft Lauderdale-132.0
Fort Walton-Destin-120
Jacksonville metro-94.0
Big Pine Key fl-132.46
Key Largo-146.0
Key West-168.0
Marathon fl-162.06
Miami metro-138.0
Naples Fl-250.59
Orlando metro-94.0
Palm Bay-84.56
Palm Coast-Flagler-125.01
Panama City-86.35
Pensacola metro-82.0
Tampa 94.60
St Pete-Clearwater-91.58
Vero-Beach Indian River-122.87
West Palm Beach metro-112.05
(Population Weighted-State Average=100
See national comparisons
Cost of living (100 = nationwide average)

* New York, NY -164.50
* Long Beach, CA -135.71
* Palo Alto, CA -234.42
* Boston, MA -127.60
* Malibu, CA -492.80
* San Francisco, -187.23
* Greenwich, CT 215
* Chicago, IL -126.45
* Dallas Tx -92,94
* Atlanta Ga -112.21

For more information about cost of living go to either
Sperlings best Places
or Accra's site at


Patients across the nation have sought medical care at Gainesville health care facilities. Alachua County is home to four major hospitals: North Florida Regional Medical Center, Shands Hospital at UF, Shands at AGH and the Malcolm Randall VA Medical Center. It is also home to the University of Florida Health Science Center, the most comprehensive academic medical center in the Southeast.

Since being founded by a group of physicians and Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) in 1972, North Florida Regional Medical Center has provided the community with high quality, cost effective health care. Today, North Florida Regional is a 278 bed, full service medical and surgical acute care center offering comprehensive heart care and orthopedic/neurosurgery and spine services.
North Florida Regional Medical Center
North Florida Regional is committed to providing integrated healthcare services that meet or exceed the needs and expectations of those they serve. The employees and medical staff are leaders in community causes and participate in a variety of events for the March of Dimes, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association and United Way.
Shands Hospital
Shands HealthCare is one of the premier health systems in the Southeast. Shands is committed to delivering essential care to residents living in the local community offering advanced diagnostic and medical services; and pioneering in the provision of sophisticated treatments that draw patients nationally for highly specialized care.

At the heart of Shands HealthCare are nine not-for-profit hospitals and more than 1,500 affiliated University of Florida and community physicians covering virtually every medical specialty and providing everything from family practice and pediatrics to behavioral health and medically advanced care such as trauma, transplantation and neurosurgery.

With experts in areas including cancer diabetes, cardiovascular services, neurosurgery, pediatrics and transportation, Shands HealthCare has celebrated numerous medical “firsts” and milestones for the region, state and nation. More information is available at 
The Malcolm Randall VA Medical Center
The Malcolm Randall VA Medical Center is part of the North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System, a comprehensive and integrated health care delivery system for veterans. The VA offers primary health care services, as well as highly specialized technologically advanced clinical care. The system includes two hospitals, three satellite clinics and several community-based outpatient clinics.

Operated by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the center supports teaching and research through its affiliation with the University of Florida Health Science Center and other colleges and universities.




For a list of all schools Read more:

Colleges/Universities in Gainesville:

Higher Education
University of Florida

Education has been one of the chief businesses in Gainesville since the Buckman Act of 1905 created the University of Florida. Today, UF is a major public, state-supported, land-grant research university with a wide range of academic and research programs on its campus. It is the state’s oldest and largest university, and is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities.

UF offers more than 100 undergraduate majors, nearly 200 graduate programs and five major professional programs. In addition to 21 colleges and schools, UF has more than 100 research, research, and education centers, bureaus and institutes. With more than 47,000 students, 4000 faculty and 18,000 staff, UF is among the five largest universities in the nation. More information is available at
Santa Fe Community College

Economic development and career opportunities are the central missions of Santa Fe Community College. SFCC offers approximately 50 associate of science programs in a wide range of fields. More than 90 percent of graduates from these programs find employment in the field of their choice or continue their education.

The college has experienced steady growth since it first offered classes in 1966. Today there are more than 14,000 students taking credit classes and 8000 more in community education classes for personal development. SFCC is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the Florida Department of Education.
City College

City College is a private, non-profit junior college located in Gainesville, with other campuses in Ft. Lauderdale, Miami and Orlando. The college has experienced steady growth, not only in the area of traditional education, but also in customized training programs for business and government.

City College’s primary specializations are in the medical, business and legal fields. The college also offers various programs such as the “Corporate Partnership Program,” through which business people, government workers and the general public can access a number of services, including seminars, workshops and computer training. More information is available at
Webster University

Ocala Metropolitan Campus – Webster University is an independent, accredited, non-profit university offering graduate degree programs in business administration, management and leadership, human resources, counseling and several online programs.

Founded in St. Louis, MO, in 1915, the University is dedicated to academic excellence and innovation to meet the needs of students, businesses, and working adults. Webster University currently serves more than 22,000 students through a network of more than 100 campuses worldwide and online.

Webster University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association. For more information click here.

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA (Full-time enrollment: 41,543; Public; Website:; Offers Doctor's degree)
SANTA FE COMMUNITY COLLEGE (FT enrollment: 7,942; Location: 3000 NW 83RD ST; Public; Website:
CITY COLLEGE BRANCH CAMPUS (FT enrollment: 292; Location: 2400 SW 13TH ST; Private, not-for-profit)
FLORIDA SCHOOL OF MASSAGE (Location: 6421 SW 13TH ST; Private, for-profit; Website:
POWELLS BEAUTY ACADEMY INC (Location: 219 NW TENTH AVE; Private, for-profit)
Other colleges/universities with over 2000 students near Gainesville:
CENTRAL FLORIDA COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 36 miles; OCALA, FL; Full-time enrollment: 3,101)
SAINT JOHNS RIVER COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 40 miles; PALATKA, FL; FT enrollment: 2,509)
UNIVERSITY OF NORTH FLORIDA (about 55 miles; JACKSONVILLE, FL; FT enrollment: 9,256)
STETSON UNIVERSITY (about 70 miles; DELAND, FL; FT enrollment: 2,966)
DAYTONA BEACH COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 86 miles; DAYTONA BEACH, FL; FT enrollment: 6,257)
Biggest public high schools in Gainesville:
F. W. BUCHHOLZ HIGH SCHOOL (Students: 1141; Location: 5510 NW 27TH AVE)
GAINESVILLE HIGH SCHOOL (Students: 1002; Location: 1900 NW 13TH ST)
EASTSIDE HIGH SCHOOL (Students: 948; Location: 1201 SE 43RD ST)
LOFTEN HIGH SCHOOL (Students: 135; Location: 3000 E UNIVERSITY AVE)
A.QUINN JONES/EXCEP.STUDENT CENTER (Students: 64; Location: 1108 NW 7TH AVE)
PACE (Students: 33; Location: 1010 SE 4TH AVE)
SIDNEY LANIER CENTER (Students: 21; Location: 312 NW 16TH AVE)
Private high schools in Gainesville:
OAK HALL SCHOOL (Students: 402; Location: 8009 SW 14 AVENUE; Grades: 6 - 12)
THE ROCK SCHOOL (Students: 253; Location: 9818 SOUTHWEST 24TH AVENUE; Grades: PK - 12)
WESTWOOD HILLS CHRN ACADEMY (Students: 120; Location: 1520 NW 34TH STREET; Grades: KG - 12)
COUNTRYSIDE CHRISTIAN SCHOOL (Students: 96; Location: 10926 NW 39TH AVE; Grades: PK - 12)
CHRISTIAN LIFE ACADEMY (Students: 25; Location: 9513 NW 39TH AVE; Grades: 1 - 12)
Biggest public elementary/middle schools in Gainesville:
KANAPAHA MIDDLE SCHOOL (Students: 905; Location: 5005 SW 75TH ST)
WESTWOOD MIDDLE SCHOOL (Students: 878; Location: 3215 NW 15TH AVE)
HOWARD W. BISHOP MIDDLE SCHOOL (Students: 846; Location: 1901 NE 9TH ST)
FORT CLARKE MIDDLE SCHOOL (Students: 829; Location: 9301 NW 23RD AVE)
ABRAHAM LINCOLN MIDDLE SCHOOL (Students: 753; Location: 1001 SE 12TH ST)
WILLIAM S. TALBOT ELEM SCHOOL (Students: 376; Location: 5701 NW 43RD ST)
HIDDEN OAK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (Students: 368; Location: 9205 NW 23RD AVE)
C. W. NORTON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (Students: 344; Location: 2200 NW 45TH AVE)
KIMBALL WILES ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (Students: 318; Location: 4601 SW 75TH ST)
Biggest private elementary/middle schools in Gainesville:
ST PATRICK INTERPARISH SCHOOL (Students: 578; Location: 550 NE 16TH AVE; Grades: PK - 8)
MARTHA MANSON ACADEMY (Students: 322; Location: 7715 SW 14TH AVENUE; Grades: PK - 5)
GAINESVILLE COUNTRY DAY SCH (Students: 317; Location: 6801 SW 24TH AVE; Grades: PK - 5)
BRENTWOOD SCHOOL (Students: 263; Location: 1111 NW 55 ST; Grades: PK - 5)
MILLHOPPER MONTESSORI SCHOOL (Students: 207; Location: 8505 NW 39TH AVE; Grades: PK - 8)
GAINESVILLE CHRISTIAN ACADEMY (Students: 180; Location: 3401 NW 34TH ST STE 5; Grades: KG - 8)
STEPPING STONES NURSERY SCH (Students: 118; Location: 3536 NW 8 AVENUE; Grades: PK - KG)
CHILDREN'S CENTER SOUTH (Students: 76; Location: 5600 SW 34 ST; Grades: PK - 2)
IN HIS ARMS CHILDHOOD DEVELOPM (Students: 75; Location: 9700 NEWBERRY ROAD; Grades: PK - KG)
BNAI ISRAEL SCHOOL (Students: 34; Location: 3830 NW 16 BLVD; Grades: PK - 2)

Read more:


With average highs between 76 and 82 degrees fahrenheit in the spring and fall, between 89 and 91 degrees fahrenheit in the summer and as high as 69 degrees fahrenheit in the winter, the local temperate climate indulges a growing season that lasts through much of the year.

Gainesville's climate is defined as humid subtropical. Due to its inland location, Gainesville experiences wide temperature fluctuation for Florida. During the summer season, roughly from June 1 to September 30, the city's climate is the same as the rest of the state, with frequent downpours and high humidity. Temperatures range from the low 70s at night to around 90 °F (32 °C) during the day on average.[17] From early-October through late May, however, the Gainesville area has a climate distinct from peninsular Florida with occasional freezing temperatures at night and sustained freezes occurring every few years. The all time record low of 10 °F (-12 °C) was reached on January 21, 1985,[18] and the city was struck by a substantial snow and ice storm on Christmas Eve, 1989. In winter, highs average between 66 and 69 °F (19–21 °C), and lows average between 42 and 45 °F (6–7 °C).[17] In average winters, Gainesville will see temperatures drop below 30 °F (-1 °C).[19] Low temperatures between 15 and 20° F (-10 - -7 °C) are not unheard of, and occur 3 to 4 times per decade on average. In Gainesville, cold temperatures are almost always accompanied by clear skies and high pressure systems; snow is therefore rare.

min F max F avg F avg prcp
Jan 50.7 71.6 61.2 2.33
Feb 50.0 71.8 60.9 4.00
Mar 55.5 77.5 66.5 3.24
Apr 61.3 84.0 72.7 1.30
May 66.9 88.4 77.7 3.10
Jun 71.7 90.5 81.1 7.53
Jul 73.5 92.1 82.8 7.15
Aug 73.7 91.4 82.6 7.07
Sep 72.7 89.3 81.0 6.27
Oct 66.6 84.1 75.3 2.86
Nov 56.9 77.0 67.0 1.65
Dec 51.8 72.9 62.3 2.01
Average 62.6 82.6 72.6 48.51




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About the areas
The site has the state divided up into 19 major areas and 80 plus sub-areas. We chose these areas as they are the ones most referred to in guides about Florida and also because most people are familiar with them as the names evoke something. Additionally on each area dropdown there is information relevant to florida real estate and relocating to florida. We have provided lists of Florida Real Estate agents-Mortgage brokers and more.