View CCTC’s 16/17 Fiscal Year Report

Think you know how Central Coast Tourism Council markets the destinations, attractions, and hotels of California’s Central Coast? There’s more to it than you might think. Learn what this nonprofit organization does on your behalf when you take a look at CCTC FY Report 16-17.Final Read More.

Showcasing California’s Central Coast Takes Teamwork!

California’s Central Coast was very well represented at IPW in Washington, D.C. from June 4-8. Our good friends and partners from Oxnard CVB, Ventura VCB, and Gilroy Welcome Center represented the entire Central Coast from a CCTC booth, and also coordinated branding the entire aisle with help from other Central Coast destinations and attractions such as Monterey Bay Aquarium, Santa Barbara Hotel Group, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Morro Bay, Santa Cruz, and Simi Valley. The aisles were made to feel like a Central Coast road trip as attendees traveled along Highway One, stopping to visit unique destinations (booths) along the way.

Welcome CCTC Board of Directors 17/18

Central Coast Tourism Council is led by experienced travel and tourism professionals. Our board of directors is the steward of the CCTC vision, and the assets that secure and sustain this organization’s wellbeing and growth. We congratulate and thank these incredible industry leaders for serving on CCTC’s 2017-18 Board of Directors. Read more.

Celebrating Solvang: See Shrek The Musical Here Thru July 31st

You and your family simply must make plans now to see Shrek The Musical here in all its joy at the outdoor Solvang Festival Theater. Performed by acclaimed actors of PCPA (Pacific Conservatory Theatre), all the beloved characters you know from the Oscar-winning movie are brought to life on stage in this Tony Award-winning adventure: the reluctant hero Shrek, the Donkey, Fiona, a short tempered bad guy, a cookie with an attitude, and more fairy tale misfits–be ready to cheer and be transformed! Performances are Tuesday-Sunday now thru July 31. Tickets are available online at or at the Theater box office located at 420 Second Street. On July 20 (Solvang Third Wednesday) adult tickets are 25% off (and be sure to ask about seasonal senior, student, or child pricing—yet remember, kids under 5 are not admitted into the theater.) Solvang Festival Theater is within easy walking distance of hotels, restaurants and local attractions. As Shrek would say, “For your information, there’s a lot more to ogres than people think.”

Gilroy Garlic Fries Now at Select McDonald’s Locations!

In May 2016, McDonald’s began offering Gilroy Garlic Fries at select locations in the San Francisco Bay Area. Using a purée made with world-famous garlic from Gilroy, California – the Garlic Capital of the World – the fries are being served in four restaurants in San Jose and Santa Clara.

The new fries are made-to-order in McDonald’s kitchens, where restaurant employees toss French fries in stainless steel bowls with a purée mix that includes chopped Gilroy garlic, olive oil, parmesan cheese, parsley and a pinch of salt. The garlic fries are part of a trend at McDonald’s to experiment with regional flavors and food on its menu.

The garlic in McDonald’s new Gilroy Garlic Fries is grown in Gilroy, California, approximately 80 miles south of San Francisco and nicknamed “The Garlic Capital of the World.”  The fourth-generation, family-owned Christopher Ranch in Gilroy is the largest garlic production operation in the United States and grows the garlic used in the Gilroy Garlic Fries—as well as the 2+ tons of fresh garlic used each year at the Gilroy Garlic Festival.

McDonald’s French fries are one of the most-iconic items on the menu. The fries are made with North American-grown, premium potatoes that are partially fried and flash frozen. Once they arrive at the restaurant, they are cooked in a Canola oil blend and flavorings and served crispy and hot. McDonald’s French fries have zero grams of trans fat per labeled serving.

“As many people know, McDonald’s is committed to listening to our customers,” said Chef Michael Haracz, Manager of Culinary Innovation at McDonald’s USA. “We’re proud of the work done by local franchisees and the regional team to create this menu item with locally-sourced garlic, and we look forward to introducing Gilroy Garlic Fries to our customers in the Bay Area.”

“The response from our customers has been very positive,” said Nick Vergis, Co-op President, San Francisco Bay Area. “We enjoy giving our customers options and bringing this local flavor to our world-famous French fries.”  

Pending positive customer feedback, the Gilroy Garlic Fries will be available at nearly 250 McDonald’s restaurants across the San Francisco Bay Area in August.

The 4 Bay Area McDonald’s locations offering Gilroy Garlic Fries are:

  • 3509 Homestead Rd., Santa Clara, CA
  • 2191 Monterey Rd., San Jose, CA
  • 1398 W. San Carlos St., San Jose, CA
  • 4838 San Felipe Rd., San Jose, CA

So get out there and get your garlic on! 

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McDonald’s Gilroy Garlic Fries are good—but for the ultimate garlic gourmet experience, you’ll have to come to the world-famous Gilroy Garlic Festival (July 29, 30 & 31)! 

Can’t make it for the Festival? Don’t despair. You can find garlic in Gilroy all year long!