corvid wrote:How do you locals like the weather? I hear it is humid and hot all the time. I had a friend that graduated from UF law and said he didnt even own a jacket. Sounds nice. I also hear there are some epic spiders. Hows the area? Crime? Politics?
Gainesville weather is pretty extreme for Florida. What I mean is that it tends to be 5 degrees hotter than a coastal city on a hot day, and 5-10 degrees cooler on a cold day than a coastal city. Usually like 90+ from mid June until September, and humid. Summers are rainy, just like any other place in Florida. November to March is really nice, moderate weather although it does get cold here. It was 27 degrees here one night a week or two ago... so definitely bring a jacket.
Banana spiders are epic. I would flip out if I found one of those in my apartment. During the summer all sorts of insects (gnats, mosquitos, etc.) come out and make it pretty unbearable to be outside for any length of time, along with the 95+ degree heat. Winter is the nicest time of the year IMO since it never gets too unbearably cold and all the insects seem to disappear from December to April.
I love the area, though. Campus is beautiful. It has a lot of natural beauty, espc. near Lake Alice. Be sure to check out the bat house at Lake Alice at dusk when you come visit.
Crime is an issue, but no more than any other college town. Don't walk alone at night, especially if you're a female. There have recently been a lot of (3-4 in a month) sexual assaults near campus at night. I heard about a kidnapping the other day. Armed robbery, sexual assault, things like that seem to be in the student newspaper at least once a week. The main thing is to stay away from the east side of town if you can avoid it, because that is where most of the crime occurs. If you avoid the east side and generally stay in doors at night, there is practically no chance of you being a victim of any kind of violent crime. Naturally you should also assume that people will steal your stuff if you leave it unattended though.
In terms of politics, Gainesville is a heavily Democratic town, but I would say that UF students might generally lean more republican since most of the students are upper-midle class white kids. The (undergrad) college republicans seem to be a lot better organized than the dems, but the dems are a larger group. So basically on either side of the fence you should probably feel comfortable in this community.
Sorry that was long lol but there's a lot to say about UF.