Garlic Festival Shooting: Local reaction

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The festival draws tens of thousands of people to the small farming community, including some Utahns.

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – The Gilroy Garlic Festival draws tens of thousands of visitors every year to the small farming community; it’s now the latest scene of tragedy at the hands of a gunman. 

Danielle Moneypenny lives in Utah now, but she grew up within an hour of the Gilroy Garlic Festival. She said she found out about last night’s deadly shooting when a Facebook friend listed themselves as ‘safe” from the Gilroy Shooting.

“Your mind is racing; it’s just hard to swallow.” Moneypenny continued, “I never thought it would be this personal. It’s disappointing when you can picture the area in which people are being affected.”

The festival turned 40 this year. It was started to celebrate the area’s biggest economic asset: garlic. Vendors and chefs compete for a title every year while festival-goers enjoy live music and any savory food you can think of and even ones you probably haven’t considered like garlic ice cream. Moneypenny says it’s actually delicious. 

There’s no word yet on next year’s festival, but Moneypenny guesses it will go on for many more years, “I think people in that area are really resilient and if anything more people are going to go just to be like, ‘screw you,’ to the shooter. It will take some time but I think the festival will probably survive this and come back from it.”

The president of this year’s garlic festival said in a statement, “We are so thankful for the thoughts and prayers and the outpouring of support form people all over the world.”

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