A few weeks ago I flew up to Seattle to visit an old friend. This trip had been planned for about a month when I discovered that my visit would coincide with the 13th annual Seattle VegFest! I was so excited that I’d be able to check out Seattle’s vegan food scene, get in some sightseeing, and also attend the largest VegFest in the country all in one visit! For the record, that’s just exactly what I did.
While I haven’t attended as many VegFest events as I’d like, I’ve attended two in the last year and both in major cities– Sacramento and San Francisco. The Seattle VegFest takes the cake in terms of the number of people who attended, the number of vendors and booths, not to mention the stellar downtown location just a few minutes walk to the Space Needle. While the event space wasn’t terribly large, this event was PACKED and there was always something going on like a demo, a talk or a book signing. While there were long lines to taste food samples, they were well worth the wait!
For the first time, I was able to connect in person with some of my online vegan friends as well as meet some of my favorite bloggers and authors. I met Bianca Phillips, a well known vegan blogger of Vegan Crunk and author of Cookin’ Crunk: Eatin’ Vegan in the Dirty South. Bianca was sweet enough to sign a copy of her book for me and we chatted a bit about what it’s like being vegan and having country roots. I also met Ellen Jaffe Jones, author of Eat Vegan on $4 a Day, Kitchen Divided, and co-author of Paleo Vegan.
With all the tabling at the event I was able to try many new vegan foods that I hadn’t tried before like Punk Rawk Labs, a raw non-dairy nut cheese company. I also savored some of my old favorites like Bee Free Honee, NibMor chocolate, Bobo’s Oat Bars as well as So Delicious Dairy Free. There were too many vendors to list here, but most were vegan or had vegan-friendly options. It’s great to see so many companies moving in the plant-based direction.
This VegFest was not just about food. There were environmental groups tabling as well as local farmers, and well known animal welfare group, Mercy For Animals. I stopped at their booth to say “hi” and to check out their fun photo opportunity. I made my own “I choose veg because…” sign and paired it with some fun veggies on sticks. One of the ladies at the booth took this photo of me kicking up my cowgirl heels.
While I’d love to report on all the amazing vegan and vegan-friendly dining options I tried while in Seattle, I am going to have to save that for another post. Needless to say, I had a great and delicious time at the Seattle VegFest. Kudos to the organizers and volunteers, and of course to Vegetarians of Washington for putting on such a well-attended and worthwhile event! I highly recommend checking it out next year, especially if you are in the Pacific Northwest area. Yeehaw!