Before 2022 ends, dive into our most powerful, heartfelt and colorful coverage of the year. We thank our readers and local community for trusting us in amplifying the cultural scene in Gainesville and beyond.
By Averi Kremposky
The publication of Lizzie Jenkins’ book follows statewide debates on book banning, age-appropriate class materials and race-related instruction in classrooms. In April, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill into law banning educators from teaching critical race theory, an academic concept that addresses systemic racism. Read more.
By Kristine Villarroel
On May 25, the Hardback Cafe closed its doors. Its community — reminiscent of one that gathered in 1999 — gathered again, this time for an eclectic event. Read more.
By Heather Bushman and Veronica Nocera
Thousands of students, parents, children and Gainesville residents gathered in Bo Diddley Plaza Oct. 22 for Gainesville Pride Festival's grand return. The festival was canceled in 2020 and 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but attendees came back in full force — adorned in all colors of the rainbow and representing all sectors of the LGBTQ community. Read more.
By Eileen Calub
As a child, Christina Demps sat on the floor of her parents’ bedroom, her head tipped back as her mother intricately braided her hair. When they could, they sat together on Sundays and prepared Demps’ hair for the next morning. But as Demps grew older, it became harder to find time. Read more.
By Amanda Friedman
Millions of Ukrainians are now refugees as a result of Russia's invasion that began Feb. 24. While members of the Gainesville and UF community have gathered to protest, some have found a different outlet to show solidarity with Ukraine: art. A mural, Instagram account and Century Tower lighting are a few among the many artistic efforts to raise awareness. Read more.
By Averi Kremposky
Every staff member who was forced to work part-time during the pandemic has resumed their full-time positions, Lynge said. In addition, across all theater programming areas — mainstage, education, cinema and events — there has been a steady increase in ticket sales. Read more.
By Amanda Friedman and Jared Teitel
The downtown nightclub, located at 18 E University Ave, became Gainesville’s first gay club after opening its doors more than 30 years ago. It’s widely recognized as the heart of Gainesville’s LGBTQ+ nightlife. Read more.
By Lauren Brensel
BeReal is a social media app where users have two minutes to snap an unfiltered front-and-back-facing photo once a day. All 10 million of its daily active users receive the BeReal notification at the same time, but the alert is sent at different times every day — ideally offering a candid glimpse into the average person’s life. The app prides itself on its authenticity, but some UF faculty and students aren’t confident that goal is possible in a developed, digitalized world. Read more.
By Alissa Gary
UF President Kent Fuchs has served as the university’s president since 2015. He succeeded former president Bernie Machen, who was also known to walk around campus and interact with students during his tenure. He’s worked to keep up Machen’s tradition in more ways than one — typically through his pranks. Read more.