The Gilroy Garlic Festival Association announced today its record charity distribution of $325,000 to 175 participating nonprofit organizations who volunteered during the 34th annual event in Christmas Hill Park.
On top of that, the festival's board of directors also voted to contribute an additional $50,000 to the Rudy Melone Memorial Scholarship Fund, $9,000 to the Gilroy Unified School District for new lunch tables and $8,500 to the Discover Arts Program.
The most recent awards ups the total amount of money distributed to local nonprofit organizations in the last 34 years to a whopping $9,737,763. The 34th annual Gilroy Garlic Festival, which took place the last weekend of July, was powered by 4,000 volunteers and accommodated 100,240 visitors.
"The people most responsible for the record amount of this year's awards are the volunteer leaders who diligently managed expenses and realized that every dollar saved a dollar returned to their organization," said Hugh Davis, president of the 34th annual, internationally renowned, three-day summer food extravaganza. "There is no better time of year to represent the Garlic Festival than after all the bills are paid and the board of directors decides how much we can grant back to our volunteer organizations."
The commitment to giving back to the festival's nonprofit workforce through the Volunteer Equity Program was established by the event's founders in 1979, the inaugural year of the Gilroy Garlic Festival.
The top beneficiaries of 2012 are:
-South Valley Community Church: $14,688
-Gilroy and Christopher high schools alliance choir: $12,224
-Live Oak Emerald Regime: $11,298
-Gilroy Gators Swim Team: $11,223
-Gilroy Hawks Wrestling: $9,539
The 35th annual Gilroy Garlic Festival returns July 26-28, 2013.