The Hudson Valley Garlic Festival, held on the last full weekend of September, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this Saturday and Sunday, Sept 28 & 29. Those are the days you can follow your nose to Cantine Field in Saugerties, New York, for the largest collection of garlic related items on the East Coast.
Can’t get to Gilroy, California, the garlic capital of the world, this year for the largest garlic festival? No problem! For 25 years Saugerties has hosted the next best thing, the Hudson Valley Garlic Festival. Thanks to Pat Reppert, the “Goddess of Garlic”, who had the vision to create the Garlic Festival at her Shale Hill Herb Farm those many years ago, Saugerties has become the garlic center of the Hudson Valley and beyond.
There will be 100s of vendors selling everything to do with garlic both days. The farmers and growers offer dozens of varieties of garlic bulbs and related vegetables for sale. The food vendors feature every imaginable way to eat garlic, including garlic candy and garlic ice cream. Craft vendors will have garlic designed everything, from apparel to jewelry and folksy kitsch, all done up in autumn colors.
In addition, throughout the day chefs and garlic experts will offer cooking demos and lectures on all aspects of growing, preserving and preparing Allium sativum, as garlic is technically known, in the newly expanded presentation area. Meanwhile, on the many stages scattered throughout the festival, the day is filled with musicians, puppeteers and dancers performing every type of family entertainment for your enjoyment.
While celebrating garlic is fun; eating garlic can be good for you. The Hudson Valley Garlic Festival is a win/win event! Garlic is high in vitamin C, contains antiseptic properties and aids in heart function and health. And of course, one can't discount it's abilities to keep vampires at bay!
Festival hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. No pets, no smoking and no alcohol allowed on the grounds. It is truly a healthful, family oriented event, one to be enjoyed by all ages.
Tickets are $10 at the gate, parking is free, and there are free shuttles into the nearby historic business district in the Village of Saugerties. Come, spend the day reveling in the “garlicianna” of the Hudson Valley Garlic Festival, and explore the quaint shops of one of the “Coolest Towns” in the US – Saugerties.
A word about traffic – over the years the Kiwanis have worked with the Town, County and State Police to perfect a steady flow of traffic around the Village of Saugerties, north and east to the Festival grounds. Locals know better than to try to drive or park on the north side of the village during the festival, so all the traffic is essentially going to the same place. Come early, be patient, and relax and enjoy the glorious weather, the first fall colors and the wonderful aroma of garlic in the air. See you at the Hudson Valley Garlic Festival! (follow the link for weather & traffic reports, a map of the festival grounds and a road map of the Saugerties area.)