A bright orange golf cart leads the way as a gang of four scooters darted down the roads of UF.
Traveling in the cart was a film crew from The Richards Group of Dallas, Texas. The crew came to Gainesville Monday to gather footage for a new set of Southeastern Conference Network commercials.
The commercials will feature schools from across the SEC, creative director and writer Bill Milkereit, 49, said.
The production team has already traveled to Lexington, Kentucky; Knoxville, Tennessee; Columbia, South Carolina, and Athens, Georgia, before making its way to Gainesville.
This is the fourth year of the “It Just Means More” campaign, Milkereit said. The goal of the campaign is to show SEC culture beyond sports.
“This year’s different though,” Milkereit said. “We’re trying to find that piece of every school that’s a little different, a little more intense, a little weirder, a little more unique that you can’t get anywhere else.”
That is why the team chose to focus on Gainesville’s scooter culture, Milkereit said.
Not all viewers are going to associate scooters with UF, producer Lynn Louria, 48, said. But UF students, fans and alumni will instantly recognize Library West as the scooters zip by it.
Louria said the production team would film at locations including Satchel’s Pizza and the DNA Bridge.
All students in the scooter scene abided by the University Police officer’s instructions. Assistant Vice President for UF Communications Nicole Yucht stood close by reminding the riders to wear their helmets.
The production team came to Gainesville about a month ago to find locations and ideas for the commercial, Yucht said. It wasn’t until Friday she received the final schedule for filming.
Despite the short notice, more than 20 UF students signed up to appear in the commercial, Yucht said.
Student Body President Ian Green was one of the four students in the scooter scene.
The scooter Green was riding ran out of gas just before the scene was finished, and the production staff joked that perhaps they should find the manual for Green.
Even with the mishap, Green said he was glad that he participated in the commercial.
“I think it was an opportunity to show that the University of Florida is not only a very (academically) sound university but also one where we have fun and we have our own unique culture,” Green said while he pushed the scooter back to a parking spot.