VegFest 2016: Picture the scene from the 1971 ‘Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory’, the doors opened and a whole world of wonders lay waiting as we rushed out to explore. There were mountains of dairy-free ice cream, seitan trees and a river of cacao… okay, it wasn’t quite as dramatic but that is how it felt! It was truly inspiring to see stall upon stall of goodies that were not only suitable for vegans, but were made for vegans.
From confectionery to clothing VegFest had it all, filling up two huge areas on the 1st floor, loads of stalls upstairs on the 2nd floor, as well as several large rooms for talks and presentations about athletics, cooking and activism. It took me all day to make my way around (I was there from around 10:00 until 17:00) and I still only managed to get a quick glance at some of the stalls, I really regret not being able to attend both Saturday and Sunday.
It was great to see some of the vegans and brands that I knew such as Vegusto, Bute Island Foods (Sheese), Jollyum and the Dr. Hadwen Trust, as well as so many new and upcoming ones. I ended up spending far too much but there was hardly any guilt since I knew that my money had gone to support vegan friendly companies and groups (as well as some actual donations such as the Hillside Animal Sanctuary). I couldn’t resist getting a new t-shirt and hoodie (thank you Anticarnist!) patches for my jacket, stickers and plectrums (thank you Vegan Sidekick!) and an awesome new strap for my bass guitar made out of a recycled bike tire!
All in all it was a great day to be vegan, being surrounded by so many wonderful people really was a treat, I’m ready to book my ticket for next year already! I highly recommend you go to one of the VegFest events around the country if you haven’t already done so, it really is an amazing experience.