June 19th, 2024

Hot sauce expo set for celebration of spicy

By Ry Clarke - Lethbridge Herald Local Journalism Initiative Reporter on March 10, 2023.

Herald photo by Ry Clarke Dylan Lowry, co-owner of Beyond Hot, is excited to be hosting Heating Up the Prairies this weekend, the first ever Western Hot Sauce Expo, this Saturday down at Lethbridge Exhibition.

A local Lethbridge business is looking to bring a little extra heat to the city this weekend, helping melt the ice and tastebuds with its event.

Heating up the Prairies will be taking place Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., at the Lethbridge Exhibition. Hosted by Beyond Hot, vendors will be coming from all over Canada looking to celebrate everything hot related, from sauces to bbq, and even some sweet treats infused with a kick for spice lovers.

“We are doing the first ever Western Hot Sauce Expo called Heating up the Prairies here in Lethbridge,” said Dylan Lowry, co-owner of Beyond Hot.

“There is a lot that has been done out east and all over the U.S., but nobody’s thought to do it in western Canada. It’s stressful, fun, and exciting, but why not connect all these guys from coast to coast?”

The event will have hot sauce awards, salsa dancers, a hot sauce shot challenge, and a must have: a wing challenge, giving all in attendance a chance to spice up their culinary practices.

“We judge over 60 bottles of hot sauces in different categories, I’ll have trophies in various categories to present,” said Lowry. “We have around 50 to 60 vendors, and we have a lot of local people looking forward to a fun weekend.”

The event will also be looking to give back to the community. Admission is $5 with funds going to the Chinook Child and Advocacy Centre here in town. A canned food donation will also be accepted per person, going to food banks in Lethbridge.

Lowry says the store and event are his passion, looking to put happiness before profit.

“As cliché as it is, I don’t want to live my life with any regrets. I have turned this business into my full-time passion,” said Lowry pointing to his red mohawk, adding it will go well with his suit jacket decked out in flames this weekend.

“I chase passion, not profit. As soon as you reverse those two roles, then you are losing your passion. I’m not worried about that dollar – yes I want the bills to be covered, but that’s not my forte.”

Bringing that passion to his work, Lowry hopes the event will become an annual celebration.

“It’s going to be a ton of fun. We have competitions, dancers doing multiple shows, and lots of guys from all over Canada selling their stuff,” said Lowry. “My hope is to continue this every year.”

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