Regional health and wellness resources are coming together in Trail to offer free consultations and demonstrations in a one-day event presented by the Trail & District Chamber of Commerce.
The Kootenay Healthy Lifestyles Expo, slated for May 4 at the Trail Memorial Centre, offers access to over 70 exhibits and market vendors, as well as insight from experts.
The tradeshow highlights a wide range of specialties, encouraging attendees to explore traditional and emerging services, activities, and products. The core expo and farmer’s market run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; however, doors open at 9 a.m. in time for an early bird yoga circle led by Troy Bingham, owner of Kootenay Sol Yoga. Demonstrations will wrap up at 1:30 p.m. with a chocolate treat demonstration by Sandy Kirchner, owner of The RAW Root Cellar, but at that point the day is still far from over.
“It’ll be my first year attending; I’m excited to enjoy a full day of health awareness, fresh market food and goods, great speakers, and connecting with attendees and exhibitors young and old,” says Ed Attridge, executive director of the Trail and District Chamber of Commerce.
People who have considered different modalities like reflexology or craniosacral therapy and want to learn more about what’s available in the region are encouraged to attend. The tradeshow is also a great learning opportunity for residents and tourists interested in pursuing business in health and wellness.
Exhibitors are traveling from across the Kootenays and beyond to attend the largest expo of its kind in Southeastern B.C. Last year’s event brought in 1,000 people from around the province and the neighbouring U.S.; the Chamber expects to increase attendance this year, given the dynamite vendors and presenters.
Keynote speakers include Registered Holistic Nutritionist Lindsay Young, the owner of Eat Young Nutrition, who specializes in digestive support, mental health, and hormonal balance. She aims to educate people on the functional properties of whole foods, their applications in the diet, and how to value nutrition as part of our lives. Complementary to that topic, renowned speaker Dr. Pamela Fergussonwill speak on the health benefits of a plant-based diet. The registered dietician, who holds a Ph.D. in nutrition, currently practices this lifestyle with her family in Nelson, B.C.
The Kootenay Healthy Lifestyles Expo is the largest business support event in the organization’s calendar year, according to Attridge, who recognizes the indispensable efforts of volunteers as well as the major sponsors: City of Trail, EZ Rock, AM Ford, Teck Metals and Black Press.
The Chamber’s mandate to support local business is a major driver for the Expo; the directive has resulted in tremendous opportunity and success for new and existing businesses, according to Chamber President Doug Jones.
“I remember when we kicked the Expo off three years ago, we thought the idea of healthy living should be on everyone’s mind, particularly with what our area has to offer,” he explains. “The event really showcases the possibilities here and has benefitted health-focused businesses in the region.”
Audry Durham, former executive director turned volunteer, settled in Trail three years ago; at the time she felt the Kootenays was culturally progressive, but the industry wasn’t well-documented. She became an advocate for health and wellness in 1990, the year she was diagnosed with lupus. Managing the long-term autoimmune disease resulted in a complete lifestyle change, and she swears eating clean and exercising saved her life.
“I’ve been on this journey for 25 years now, and it's a lifestyle choice - what we eat and how we move impacts our overall quality of life.”
The Kootenay Healthy Lifestyles Expo features food trucks showcasing healthy options, shopping, and prizes, including a one-year unlimited yoga pass to The Nadi Tree (valued at over $1,200), a round-trip for two passengers between Vancouver and Trail from Pacific Coastal Airlines (valued at nearly $800), a one-night stay at The Josie Hotel, including breakfast or dinner for two (valued at $450), and a Kootenay Gateway Snowshoe Tour & Forest Fondu efor four (valued at approximately $370).
Tickets are available at the door for $5 and include full access to all events and presentations. As the official transportation sponsor, AM Ford will provide a convenient free shuttle service to and from parking.