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7 Gainesville Laws that are Actually Real Laws for Some Reason

At first glance, the city of Gainesville may seem like a clash of cultures. It truly has it all: a bumping bar scene, rural farmland that goes on for miles, and police that will hide and wait in the most obscure spots on campus to catch you speeding when you least expect it. The only way a city like Gainesville can function is with extensive rules, but some of those rules end up being more, well, unique than others. Here are 7 Gainesville city ordinances that every Gator didn’t know they needed to know.

7.) If you find dinosaur bones in a park, you must tell someone:
If you’re playing in a park or walking through the woods, and you find dinosaur bones or some other sort of fossil, you are mandated to tell the city manager. It doesn’t say what happens if you don’t, so if you want to take the risk to recreate Jurassic Park in Gainesville, go for it.

6.) If your animal smells bad, you can get fined:
If your dog takes a really nasty shit (even if it’s on your own property) and you don’t feel like cleaning it up at that moment, you’d better hope your neighbor doesn’t smell it. Your animal will be considered a public nuisance, and you’ll be cited and fined by the city. Alternatively, use this one against your asshole neighbor who doesn’t clean up after his dog.

5.) You can’t drink in the cemeteries:
If you were planning on having a rager that could literally wake the dead, forget about it. You can’t even carry the alcohol onto the premises, let alone consume it. And don’t you dare fuckin’ “loaf” or ”lounge” anywhere in the cemetery, because that’s not allowed either. It seems like Gainesville is doing its best to make cemeteries even more depressing than they already are.

4.) You can get your own proposal on a ballot:
Anyone who gets enough signatures from Gainesville citizens can get their law, amendment, or regulation put on the ballot for the next election. If you can get 10% of citizens within 90 days to sign on your proposal for scooter-only lanes, you have a shot at making that dream a reality.

3.) Technically, you can only ever set off one firework a day:
Gainesville’s noise laws state that you can only make/cause a sound that’s 145 decibels (really loud) once every 24 hours. Any louder or more frequent, and you can get seriously fined. Coincidentally, the sound of a firework going off is about 145 decibels. Be on the lookout (listen-out?) for troublemakers this July.

2.) The city manager can go anywhere he/she wants:
If the city manager suspects that you have standing water (which can breed mosquitoes) on your property, he or whoever he designates can waltz onto your property as long as it’s at a “reasonable time.” So if you think there’s a strange man outside staring in through your window at 10:53 p.m., it could just be the city manager looking for mosquitoes. 

1.) There are a lot of special names to do with strip clubs:
Gainesville’s city government doesn’t seem to be comfortable with many of the terms to do with strip clubs. They call them “adult performance establishments,” for starters. Within these “adult performance establishments,” sometimes the employees show off their “specified anatomical areas” when they do “straddle dances.” Gainesville, why’d you have to put it that way? Why’d you have to make it weird, damn?

BONUS: It’s illegal to sell children in the state of Florida.
For any of you prepping to make a buck during the holiday season in nine months, you might as well quit while you’re behind.

All of these ordinances are real and you can find them in Gainesville’s City Hall or online. See for yourself, and be sure to review the public nudity and intoxication laws before hitting Mid this weekend!

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