Monday, October 11, 2010

VeganMania Recap

Marla, The Vegan Cupcake Fairy
and one of the primary organizers of VeganMania

VeganMania was hot last Saturday.   I mean really, swelteringly hot.   But even the vegans, in Mother Earth's good graces, can't control the weather.   It's a testament to their success that the fest was as crowded as it was on such a gorgeous, summery day.

We began the day by meeting the "cabbage patch girl"--an attendee who just said she thought dressing like a salad would be a fun conversation starter and good way to meet people.   She even greened up her boots and her bag!

Entertainment ranged from world music, to belly dance and folk.   And there were overflowing rooms full of vegan friendly and recycled crafts, clothes and art.   Books were also plentiful, as were animal rescue and rights information booths.   

We were a bit disappointed with the food selection, spoiled as we are by the cheap, multicultural bounty available in Chicago all the time.    The main choices were Chinese, Indian, and Soul Food and they were all relatively pricey.   Lunch also required long waits in two lines--first for food tickets and then for the food itself.   

Not to sound cheap about a free fest, but we had hoped for a big room full of booths with Vegan samples, more like Whole Foods flavor fest used to be.   The only samples we came across were fizzy juices and Vegan fish sticks.   We were also disappointed that the kids specific area from last year was dropped.

Still, the people watching was prime and we soaked in a good amount of information and caught some interesting acts.   Read My Hips belly dancers were especially impressive as they included many ages and body types among the dancers.  We had a lot of fun and look forward to VeganMania year 3, in 2011.


  1. Hey, Bonnie -

    Thanks for the write up. I'm glad that you could join us.

    The children's area was happening all day and it was pretty busy. It was happening behind the ticket booth outside the restaurant area.

    Sorry that you were disappointed by the selection of food. We had three restaurants pull out at the last minute. There was a lot sold, though!

    Last, giving out samples has never been one of our focuses or goals and we didn't bill it as such an event. We are a culture festival primarily. For samples, there's the Green Festival or FamilyFarmed, both of which charge to get in, of course. Every year as we grow, there's likely to be more samples, but that's not ever going to be a purpose of CVM, not as long as I'm involved anyway. ;)

    Thanks again!

  2. Hey no worries. We had fun and will be back next year. I'm bummed we missed the kids' area. We didn't see it at all--or any signage about where it was. Guess we were all hungry and focused on getting food when we hit that spot. I think we visited every other area pretty thoroughly, most rooms more than once.