2016 Garlic Festival

A scene from a previous Cuba Garlic Festival.

CUBA — Officials are holding their noses as they cancel Allegany County’s smelliest event this fall.

Kevin White, president of the Cuba Chamber of Commerce, reported Friday that the Cuba Garlic Festival set for September has been called off.

“This really does ‘stink’ that in 2020 we will not be able to promote our 16th annual ‘Stinking Good Time,’” White said. “After much research, we found that there are too many variables that are beyond our control related to hosting a safe and socially distanced event amid the COVID-19 pandemic. We must think of the health and welfare of our sponsors, vendors, entertainers, volunteers, our own committee members, and attendees.

“Additionally we do not want to disappoint our attendees who have grown to love the festival, with the many changes that would be necessary,” he added. “In 2021 we hope that we will be able to come back with a bigger and better festival.”

The event typically draws more than 1,000 visitors a year from as far away as the Carolinas to the Empire City Farms block barn south of the village, with dozens of vendors peddling fresh garlic, garlic-flavored foods, arts and crafts.

However, Chamber officials said that another event is being planned that should be more manageable this fall.

“In light of this cancellation we are in the planning stages for a Farmers Open Air Market within the business district of the Village of Cuba, for local growers and artisan vendors,” White said, noting that the market is tentatively set for Sept. 19-20.

Vendors interested in the market should contact the Chamber at (585) 968-5654.

(Contact City Editor Bob Clark at bclark@oleantimesherald.com. Follow him on Twitter, @OTHBob)

(Contact City Editor Bob Clark at bclark@oleantimesherald.com. Follow him on Twitter, @OTHBob)