Gilroy Garlic Festival

The Gilroy Garlic Festival is one of the largest food festivals in the United States, held annually in the town of Gilroy outside San Francisco on the last full weekend in July. At the last event 108,526 people attended, sampling such diverse creations as garlic flavored ice cream and garlic french fries. Attendees also enjoy three stages full of musical entertainment, a Great Garlic Cook-off, celebrity cooking demonstrations, a garlic braiding workshop, a children’s area, arts and crafts, and many interactive displays.

A Miss Gilroy Garlic Festival Queen is also crowned yearly, chosen by a panel of five judges, based on her personal interview, talent, garlic speech and evening gown. Her court is also chosen, for the purpose of representing Gilroy at various festivities and ‘having a garlicy good time with fellow lovers of the pungent bulb.’ The festival was founded in 1979 by Dr. Rudy Melone, Don Christopher, and Val Filice, and has been a fundraiser for local charities.

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