Gnome Fest – Tucson, AZ


Gnome Fest is an annual celebration sponsored by the owners of Metro Gnome Music located at 4044 E. Speedway in Tucson, Arizona.

The first annual Gnome Fest was held on Saturday, April 7, 2012 from 11:30-6:00PM outside of the Metro Gnome Music store.

The intent of the festival was to showcase local bands in a family friendly environment. The bands included six local bands: The Bad News Blues Band, The Bouncing Czechs, Catch the Ghost, Genevieve & The LP’s, The Ronstadts, and Under the Bridge.  A dance contest was also held while the The Bouncing Czechs performed.

In addition to the bands, food trucks provided tasty eats for those in attendance. Food trucks included Jamie’s Bitchin Kitchen, Guero Loco’s Bubba Que and Trucking Good Cupcakes! And craft tables entertained the kids with color/draw gnome projects.


For male adults, there was a beard contest for the best beard! Many of the people in the crowd arrived dressed like garden gnomes.

The second annual Gnome Fest was held on Saturday March 21, 2013.

When so many guests to the original 2012 event came wearing gnome hats, the folks at Metro Gnome Music came up with the idea of breaking the world record for the largest gathering of people dressed as garden gnomes in one place at one time.

At the time the current record, according to the Guinness website, was set by 478 people at the Foyer of Malvern Theaters in Worcester, England on November 18, 2011, as part of a fundraiser for the charity BBC Children in Need.

In addition to breaking the gnome record, which started at around 3:30 p.m., there was a gnome pet contest in the morning, a syrup eating contest and a bevy of local bands performing throughout the day, including the Ronstadt Generations y Los Tucsonenses, Bad News Blues Band, Genevieve & The LPs, Kool Shades, Two Lane Blacktop, Javalinas, Lalapaloozers, Salpointe Jazz, and Newtron1 Project.

Tasty food was provided by Black Crown Coffee, the MaFooCo Food Truck, and others. There was also a drawing contest for kids 18, a best-dressed gnome contest for humans and animals and a “Gnome Harlem Shake” Dance performance.


During the third annual Gnome Fest held on Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014 from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., the event again invited guests (human and animal) to compete in a Guinness Book of World Record attempt for the largest gathering of people dressed as garden gnomes, beating the current record of 468. Gnome hats were sold for $5 with every $2 going to the Humane Society of Southern Arizona.

To be eligible for the Guinness record, men at the event were required to wear a collared shirt and vest or brightly colored tunic and belt, along with a beard. Women were to wear  a solid-colored or patterned dress with an apron or a shirt and skirt with suspenders. Both groups had to have pointed hats and boots.

Music was provided by the bands: Genevieve & the LPs, Amosphere, Copper & Congress, Lollapaloozers and Sorry About the Garden.  There was also a Twinkie-eating contest, drawing contests, a bike race for kids, and a “Gnome Wobble” dance performance.

NOTE: Metro Gnome Music & Cycle, the sponsor of the Gnome Fest, is a one-of-a kind store has been serving the Tucson community since 2000, selling used musical instruments & equipment, as well as video games, DVDs, Vinyl, and CDs and folding bicycles and bike accessories.

Metro Gnome Music & Cycle
4044 E. Speedway
Tucson, AZ 85712

Metro Gnome Music (Website)
Metro Gnome Music (Facebook)
Gnome Fest – Music (Website)
Gnome Fest – Gnome Harlem Shake Dance (Website)
Gnome Fest – Gnome Wobble Dance (Website)


Born in Philadelphia, Jerome Alphonse Holst worked 30 years as a librarian. He has since retired and lives in Thomasville, North Carolina. Mr. Holst is also the author of the children’s books “Norman the Troll,” "Norman the Troll and the Haunted House," and "Gretchen and the Gremlins." In addition, he penned the fantasy novel “The Adventures of Glinda Gale,” a retelling of “The Wizard of Oz" and the reference text “The Encyclopedia of Movie and TV Insults.” .

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Posted in Festivals and Parades

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