It is a new year and that means it is time to mark your calendar for the upcoming gluten-free expos/vendor fairs in the Southeast.
For those of you who are new to the gluten-free diet, a gluten-free vendor fair/expo is a day where you don’t have to worry about what you eat because you are in a room full of gluten-free food! It is a great opportunity to sample gluten-free products before purchasing. It is also a wonderful way to meet the owners of companies, find new products, meet new people, attend cooking classes, and listen to speakers.
Fortunately for those of us living in the Southeast, there are a number of gluten-free vendor fairs from which to choose. The list below is sorted by date of event and it includes three new events: one in Birmingham, AL, one in Mt. Pleasant, SC, and the other in Largo, FL. Expos in both New Orleans, LA and Raleigh, NC are in the works. The Gluten Intolerance Group of Atlanta is still finalizing the details of their event.
Fifth Annual South Florida Gluten-Free Expo – is on Saturday, February 18th at the South Florida Fair Grounds in West Palm Beach, FL from 11-4pm.
The Great Gluten-Free Expo is taking place in Birmingham at the The Jeff State Culinary School, Hoover, AL on February 24th and 25th. This event is offering a cooking competition, a vendor fair, a gala dinner, a 5K and much more.
The Gluten Intolerance Support Group of Largo, FL presents its 1st annual Gluten-Free for Life Expo on March 24th, 2012 from 11:00am – 4:00pm at the St. Pete Coliseum, 535 Fourth Avenue N in St. Petersburg, Florida. This expo offers nationally known speakers including Melinda Dennis, MS, RD, LDN of the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess and Mrs. United States 2011 Shannon Ford. There will be a requested Donation of $5.00 at the door.
Asheville Gluten Free Expo on March 24th – The expo is expected to bring more than 50 gluten-free local and national vendors, including many chances to sample and purchase gluten-free products. Based on last year’s turnout the organizers expect more than 1000 attendees. The event runs from 10-2 and it will be held at the Renaissance Asheville Hotel, 31 Woodfin Street · Asheville, North Carolina 28801. There is a $5 entry fee.
Celi-Act Gluten-Free Vendor Fair and Expo – is on March 31st from 11-3 p.m. in Knoxville, TN. The event is being held at the Jacobs Building at Chilhowee Park and they are expecting a crowd of more than 2,000 to attend. Admittance is $5 per person while children 13 and under are free. The event will have a vendor fair, cooking demonstrations and speakers.
The Charleston Gluten/Allergen Free Expo – is on May 5th from 11-4 p.m at the Omar Shriner’s Auditorium at Patriot’s Point in Mt. Pleasant, SC. This is their first event and admission is $10 per adult with children 12 and under free.
The Charlotte Gluten/Allergen Free Expo is on June 2nd at the Park Expo and Conference Center in Charlotte, NC.