Star Bradbury
Director of Sales and Marketing, Oak Hammock at the University of Florida

Yes, Gainesville really is a special place! Ok, I admit I am partial. Gainesville has been my home since 1978. To the surprise of many, I left Longboat Key near Sarasota to move here with my family, and my friends simply could not understand it. But I wanted the special vibrancy that only a university town could offer. All these years later, I love Gainesville more than ever, and it has become an even more attractive place to call home. So why retire here? Because Gainesville fits the bill for what retirees want!

So why retire here? Because Gainesville fits the bill for what retirees want! And what anyone is looking for! A reasonable cost of living, top-notch health care, great educational opportunities, fabulous cultural life, wonderful fitness, sports and outdoor activities and a great deal more! Why leave a place that offers so much and still has the charm of a reasonably sized town without the headaches of larger cities? Did you know that Gainesville is the home of one of the top lifelong

Did you know that Gainesville is the home of one of the top lifelong learning institutes in the country? The Institute for Learning in Retirement is open to anyone in the county, 55 and up. All that is required is that you love to learn for the pure joy of it! Professors from the University of Florida and various local experts in their field teach classes on literature, science, history, music, global and national politics, among other subjects. Check out their website at ilratoakhammock.org. Gainesville is also home to one of the top U.B.R.C’s in the country; university-based retirement communities. Sponsored by the University of Florida, Oak Hammock opened its doors

Gainesville is also home to one of the top U.B.R.C’s in the country; university-based retirement communities. Sponsored by the University of Florida, Oak Hammock opened its doors in 2004 and is home to more than 400 seniors, many of whom moved to Gainesville to make Oak Hammock their home. In the spring of 2014, the PBS NewsHour featured Oak Hammock as one of the best retirement communities in the country, and it continue to receive national accolades for all it has to offer.

As for healthcare, Gainesville has several nationally recognized hospitals such as UF Health Shands, North Florida Regional Medical Center, and one of the top VA Medical Centers in the southeast. We also have a wealth of alternative medical care, with our own massage school, acupuncture school, yoga studios and meditation and healing centers.

Culturally, we surpass many cities of our size. We boast a first-rate professional theater company, The Hippodrome, multiple community theaters, and the Phillips Center for the Performing Arts which hosts numerous national and international tours, plus, our own professional dance company, Dance Alive. We have the architectural gem of an art museum, The Harn, the Florida Natural History Museum, and a vibrant music scene with a wide range of musical venues and styles. Both the Spring Arts Festival and the fall Downtown Festival attract over 200,000 visitors annually and rank in the top art shows in the southeast.

If you love the outdoors like I do, then North Central Florida is your Mecca with lakes, rivers, springs, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, biking, camping and fishing. Where To Retire magazine, (April 2016) voted Gainesville as one of the top eight cities in the country for biking with miles of “Rails to Trails” biking paths to enjoy.

Yes, I am partial; but for good reasons! Come visit. You’ll see for yourself. Don’t be surprised when you fall in love with my town and never want to leave!

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