There's nothing better than a wonderfully smelly, salty, tasty festival - unless it's two. This weekend, you can eat your fill of garlic in Riverhead at a two-day festival dedicated to the potent stuff - and when you're done, crunch your way through pickles by the barrel in Greenlawn.
SIXTH ANNUAL LONG ISLAND GARLIC FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Garden of Eve organic farm market, 4558 Sound Ave., Riverhead, 631-722-8777, gardenofevefarm.com. $2 (ages 6 and older)
A celebration of all things garlic, including food for the tasting, crafts, garlic for planting at home and various games for kids. There will be live music; attendees can also take a tour of the farm or pick their own pumpkins.
"All garlic tastes like garlic," says Eve Kaplan-Walbrecht, who co-owns Garden of Eve farm with her husband, Chris. "But you'll learn about the subtleties of each type of garlic."
Food: Festivalgoers can purchase garlic-laced bread, French fries, chicken, sausages and crab cakes - plus more exotic creations, including garlic ice cream, garlic jelly and, yes, garlic soup.
Cook-off: Home chefs who cook up tasty garlic-tinged dishes can enter their recipes in Garden of Eve's contest - but they'll need to bring enough of their dish for 25 people to sample. Prizes will be awarded in three categories - Savory Garlic, Sweet Sweet Garlic and Miss Originality. Preregister by e-mail at email@example.com.
Vendors: More than 20 are expected, ranging from sellers of Long Island wines and handmade crafts to purveyors of eco-friendly information.
Entertainment: Musicians scheduled to perform include Warren McKnight, Bruce MacDonald on the banjo, The Midnight Blues, Skip Bement and children's artist Brady Rymer.
Greenlawn had a thriving pickle industry between the 1880s and 1920s. Take time to read about "pickle king" Samuel Ballton, who grew fields of cucumbers that were processed into pickles and shipped to New York City, and fellow pioneer Alexander Gardiner. Though the town's pickle glory is long over, the Greenlawn-Centerport Historical Association's annual festival pays tribute to this heritage with pickles by the bucketful.
Food: Attendees can take their pick from about 65 vats full of pickles (dills, half-sours from Allen Pickle Works in Glen Cove). Elsewhere, you'll find pickled tomatoes and eggs, frozen pickle pops, fried pickles and specialty flavored varieties - jalepeño, anyone?
Entertainment: Admission includes access to the farm's seasonal attractions. Attendees can take free hay rides or try to navigate a corn maze. The farm will have pumpkins and other seasonal harvest goods for sale.