— Constance Carlson, Crow River Food Council Director
The 11th Annual MN Garlic Festival is our region’s premier local food festival. This year it will be held on August 13th at the McLeod County Fairgrounds. This annual event is hosted by the Crow River Chapter of the Sustainable Farming Association (CRSFA) and is a family-friendly celebration of food, farming, fun and LOTS of garlic.
Minnesota garlic growers will have the first of their fresh gourmet garlic crop at the festival–over 100 varieties of the country’s finest garlic, all planted in the fall, harvested in July, and cured to perfection just in time for the festival. In addition to garlic growers, festival-goers can sample and purchase locally made food and goods from dozens of vendors including Redhead Creamery, Peppy Pete’s Gourmet Salsa and Olive On Tap.
The Crow River Food Council has taken an active role in supporting this event by managing the “Ask the Expert” tent. Council members Rod Greder and Connie Carlson have been scheduling area experts to talk on topics ranging from beekeeping, gardening to deep winter greenhouses and chickens. Council board member and Culinary Professional Mary Jane Miller will continue her role at the Garlic Fest overseeing the cooking demonstrations on the main stage throughout the day.
Be sure to come to the festival hungry so you can get a delicious meal at the famous Great ‘Scape Café. The Great ‘Scape Café serves food prepared by some of Twin Cities most respected and loved restaurants, including Birchwood Café, Common Roots, and Bachelor Farmer. The line usually wraps around the corner! Plan on staying for late afternoon pork roast, prepared by the the 2016 King of Pork himself, Jorge Guzman, the executive chef at Surly Brewing company.
Yes, Surly Brewing will also be on tap, as will several other regional craft beers, including our region’s very own Hayes Public House. But, the day is not just eating, drinking and stinking. There’s kite-flying, live musical entertainment, a medallion hunt and much more. For a listing of events, entertainment and vendors, check out the Crow River SFA website and follow the hashtag #MNGarlicFest on Facebook and Twitter.
The Minnesota Garlic Festival will be held at the McLeod County Fairgrounds on Saturday, August 13th, from 10AM – 6PM. Admission is $5 for adults, FREE for kids 12 and under. SPECIAL DEAL: There are several businesses in our region who are offering free 2 for 1 tickets to the Garlic Fest! Visit them and pick up your tickets today:
Read more in this MPR story on The Minnesota Garlic Fest.