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Appetite for event needs to grow

While the public is “chomping at the bit” for a Taste of Penticton event, organizers are hoping a deadline extension for exhibitors will help bring it to life.
Taste of Penticton organizers Chris Boehm

While the public is “chomping at the bit” for a Taste of Penticton event, organizers are hoping a deadline extension for exhibitors will help bring it to life.

Organizer Lori Dunn said many people have approached her and are excited about the prospect of a Taste of Penticton event, unfortunately the lack of interest from Penticton and area eateries is what might kill it.

“Everyone I have talked to has been pumped for an event like this to happen. Right now we have nowhere near enough exhibitors so we have extended the application deadline to Jan. 22,” said Dunn.

Along with organizers Chris Boehm (co-owner of Burger 55, one of the event exhibitors) and Cindy Nelson, Dunn is hoping that restaurants, pubs, cafes, bistros and caterers will come forward to have the opportunity to showcase their tastiest offerings at the all-day events. The trio of organizers said they have put the word out to a number of eateries already and are waiting for responses.

Dunn said for the public it would be a chance to try samples from restaurants they may have never heard of, or never had the opportunity to get to that are located in the South Okanagan. For business owners, Dunn said it is a great marketing opportunity.

“Restaurants will get exposure to the public and media, networking opportunities and for caterers especially, this is a great opportunity to get their name out there. We also have an interactive website with blog posts and we hope to stay in touch with all the exhibitors throughout the year promoting their events and deals,” said Dunn.

Taste of Penticton is penciled in for Feb 19 at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre from noon to 7 p.m. The day promises entertainment and delicious food from vendors in the South Okanagan from Peachland to Osoyoos. Organizers will donate a portion of the proceeds from the first annual Taste of Penticton to the Okanagan International Children’s Festival and the OSNS Child Development Centre. The public will purchase “bite tokens” at the door for $1 per token. Samples will have a price of one to three tokens, along the same lines of the popular Fest-of-Ale.

Dunn said the idea for the Taste of Penticton was inspired from the WestBank Chamber of Commerce who hold a similar event. It is also a way to help local businesses gain some new customers in the slower tourism months in the South Okanagan.

“Our businesses need to have those local followers and regulars in the winter months. That momentum carries them through the year and this event might just help with that,” said Dunn.

Taste of Penticton organizers can be contacted several ways. They have recently set up a Facebook group called Taste of Penticton where they can be contacted or by phone at 250-490-5782, by email at or through their website at