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« Dining Out with Your Young Food Allergic Child | Main | Recipe: Vegetable Chili »

6th Annual Gluten Free Food Fair: May 19, 2012; Grand Rapids, MI


It's Spring and it's time to mark your calendars for the 2012 Gluten-free Food Fair in Grand Rapids, MI.  I attended last year and it was a GREAT event.  Read about some of my favorite products from last year and an interview with event coordinator Nancy Spears, as well.  She comes to this event with a great deal of personal experience, and The Anchor Baptist Church does a fantastic job getting great vendors to the event.  It will be interesting to see how the vendor's knowledge of "gluten-free" and "cross-contamination" has evolved as well.  It's a learning curve for everyone.  I was struck by Nancy's statement about the beginning of her own learning curve:


"I have spent years unknowingly poisoning my husband, my three daughters, and one of my sons with homemade pancakes, waffles, cookies, and cakes . . . I understand the feelings that many of you go through as your children are diagnosed celiac. Twelve years ago, I cried in the pasta isle at a local Meijer store and read labels until I could hardly see."  ~Nancy Spears


About This Year's Event


When:  Saturday, May 19 from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM

Where:  the DeltaPlex Arena and Conference Center located at 2500 Turner NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504

Anchor Baptist Church presents the 2012 Gluten Free Food Fair, on Saturday, May 19th at the DeltaPlex Arena and Conference Center located at 2500 Turner NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. The purpose of this free event is to increase awareness of Celiac Disease while learning about and sampling gluten free products. A large variety of products will be available for purchase.

Many special opportunities are available at this free event: speak with vendors and restaurant representatives; attend a variety of conferences: Gluten Free 101 and Celiac & Diabetes led by Anne Lee, Schar’s dietitian; Gluten Free and Healthy by Shari Steinbach, Meijer’s dietician; and Healthy Living –Gluten Free by Allison Reed, Spartan’s dietician; and meet Miss Grand Valley, Alexa Allor, whose platform is celiac awareness.



A Few Stats on Celiac Disease

Current statistics are that 1 in 133 people have celiac disease. The University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center on their website states that “97% of celiac disease sufferers are undiagnosed”. It continues with: “The number of Americans with celiac disease would fill 936 cruise ships. Passengers on 908 of the ships won’t know they have it.”


About Anchor Baptist Church

Anchor Baptist Church has a passion for bringing people out of the darkness and into the light, spiritually and physically. To assist the growing gluten free community with the complexities of life, Anchor will be launching “Bread 4 Life Ministry”, which will begin with a nine week support group giving tools for restoring health, hope, and relationships.
More information about Anchor Baptist Church and its ministries can be found at

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