Gilroy Garlic Festival shutting down indefinitely

After greater than 4 a long time, one of many nation’s most famous food festivals is shutting down for “the foreseeable future,” organizers stated.

The Gilroy Garlic Pageant is a large, three-day occasion within the northern California metropolis of Gilroy that celebrates the “stinking rose” and raises cash for native charities. Organizers stated the occasion is now not possible due to elevated insurance coverage prices and “lingering uncertainties” from COVID-19.

Gilroy officers have been additionally placing “prohibitive insurance coverage necessities” on the competition, Garlic Pageant Affiliation Previous President Tom Cline and Vice President-Elect Cindy Fellows stated in a press release first reported by the Gilroy Dispatch.

“Clearly, we’re left annoyed and disenchanted,” the assertion learn. “Our world-renowned competition has helped showcase Gilroy and the South County for 42 years whereas elevating many tens of millions of {dollars} for native charities.”

“The competition is a part of our heritage,” the assertion from Cline and Fellows reads. “Now we should make sure that it’s a part of our future. Whereas it’s going to by no means be the huge occasion of the previous, a extra intimate, native competition can nonetheless enable us to rejoice the neighborhood, garlic and all it conjures up.”

The occasion, which started in 1979 and holds a Guinness World Record for the largest attendance at a garlic festival, was stricken by a mass capturing in 2019 that left three individuals useless and 17 others harm. It was canceled in 2020 because of the pandemic. In 2021, organizers tried to recreate the competition as a “drive-thru” occasion, according to SF Gate.

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