Betcha never celebrated Cinco de Mayo with ice cream and hot dogs before. Howdy Homemade's party from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday is the perfect opportunity to try some Cinco de Mayo-friendly ice cream flavors like hot tamale, avocado and horchata. Howdy owner Tom Landis, who has always considered himself a “bit of an outsider” and helps provide opportunities for people with special needs, says this is a “party for the everyman.”
Austin Underwood of Austin’s Underdawgs is bringing the party with his hot dog trailer. You’ll have the chance to score tempting selections like the Straw Dog (with bacon bits and onion straws), an Italian-inspired hot dog with tomato sauce and mozzarella, even an Un-Dawg loaded with black beans and veggies. You’ll want to try the specialty dawg sauce, a raspberry-chipotle barbecue blend.
Underwood has recently gained some fame not only for his food, but for his personal experience as a chef diagnosed with Down syndrome. After completing vocational training in New Mexico and Vienna Beef’s Hot Dog University, he's realized his dream of becoming a business owner. A portion of his sales proceeds go to the Each & Everyone Foundation, which helps provide job skills to individuals with special needs.
At the party, you may just have the opportunity to meet its honoree, Tim Harris. Harris, who hails from New Mexico, is known as the first person in the United States with Down syndrome to own a restaurant. His visit to Dallas is part scouting mission, as he hopes to possibly open his own Howdy franchise in Denver, where he has recently relocated.
More people with special needs seem to be opening their own businesses these days. Although IDEA (the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) was passed in 1975 and updated in 1990, society may just now be catching up to the realization that the restaurant industry, where hospitality is key and the required skills tend to be very concrete, is well suited to many people with special needs.
Tom Landis is hoping this fiesta will be big, possibly setting a Guinness World Record. Sure, it’s a little different from your typical Cinco de Mayo celebration, but different is exactly the beauty of Howdy Homemade.
Howdy Homemade, 4333 Lovers Lane, howdyhomemadeicecream.com
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.