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Is the Gilroy Garlic Festival coming back? It’s complicated

The Gilroy Garlic Festival may be revived this year.

A few weeks ago, the Garlic Festival Association organizers said the cost of insuring the space, plus pandemic woes, forced them to cancel this year’s event.

With the potential of it happening in the future in doubt as well.

But not everyone is ready to say goodbye to the beleaguered event just yet.

According to KTVU, the San Joaquin Asparagus Festival, along with the Noceti Group, said they plan to revive the Garlic Fest:

A Facebook post from the San Joaquin Asparagus Festival, May 1st at 6:13 AM: "We heard the extremely sad news that the Gilroy Garlic Festival will not be holding their annual big Garlic festival. We just couldn’t let that happen! The Noceti Group is thrilled to announce we will be hosting the Garlic Festival this year. More details to come soon! Stay tuned!"
The San Joaquin Asparagus Festival claims they’re planning to host the Garlic Festival in 2022.

The stipulation, of course, is that it would happen in Stockton, and not in Gilroy.

Unfortunately, this is news to the Garlic Festival Association in Gilroy.

Ken Christopher, one of the Festival organizers, said no one from the Noceti Group has been in contact with their organization.

Christopher shared his skepticism with KTVU:

“It looks like the Noceti group, at best, is ignorantly trying to use a news cycle to promote a future Stockton-based garlic event, and at worst, is using the national press surrounding my grandfather’s and my hometown’s legacy to self-promote”

He explained the Noceti Group’s attempt to revive the Garlic Festival, without working with or consulting their Association “is malicious.”

Noceti, of course, is claiming the opposite:

“I spoke to some of the people that (have) worked with the garlic festival in the past. But I guess there are some higher ones up the ladder that are a little upset. Maybe they should call me. Because I’m more than happy to work with people”

The Noceti Group and the Asparagus Festival added they’re “a bit busy right now” with their own festival.

“A vulture feeding off a wounded corpse”

It’s been almost 3 years since the horrific shooting at the Garlic Festival in 2019.

And the organizers, and the community say the tragedy still hangs heavy on their hearts.

KTVU quotes Christopher as saying:

“Our community has been through enough, and doesn’t need misinformation from those that aren’t affiliated with our annual homecoming”

It’s worth noting that the Gilroy Garlic Festival Association has said they’re completely fine with Stockton having their own festival.

But they do object to the Stockton developers calling it a Gilroy event.

Gilroy, after all, is known as the “Garlic Capital of the World.”

Read more on this story at KTVU.com



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