We consider the annual two-day SF LGBT Pride Celebration an important community event, attracting celebrants from cities across the Bay Area, nation, and abroad, from Albany to Arizona to Australia. SF’s event is the largest in the nation, attracting over 1 million visitors.
It’s both a symbolic and practical statement to have our banner and booth, on Larkin Street in front of the Asian Art Museum, prominently placed at the Celebration festival.
Symbolically, we are a reminder to all that yes, there are individuals in this world who eschew meat, eggs, dairy for many reasons, including ethical, environmental, animal cruelty, social justice, religious, economic, and health concerns.
Practically, we directly educate thousands more with free literature that we distribute from our table and by leafleting.
We have always had a tremendous response to our table at this event, and it’s typically busy. To increase our outreach to people, we deliberately decided to ramp up our outreach efforts away from the booth with more volunteers leafleting during the festival AND (for the first time) the Parade.
How many activists does it take to distribute 2,000 leaflets in 45 minutes?
On Sunday morning, BAVeg volunteers educated the crowd queued for the SF LGBT Pride Celebration parade. Our float was a push cart with a bunch of celery banded to the front. Alex and Ari inked their sentiments to GOVEG.COM on their bare backsides, and distributed leaflets to individuals hungry for veg info. Chris managed the cart, laden with Vegetarian Starter Kits.
By the end of the weekend, by working together, BAVeg volunteers distributed over 10,300 pieces of literature, mostly by leafleting with Vegan Outreach Why Vegan and Even if You Like Meat and Vegetarian Starter Guides from PETA and Mercy for Animals. We also signed-up hundreds of new members.
When asked about his volunteer experience, Ari reflects, “Alex and I passed out about 2,000 vegetarian starter guides in less than one hour before the parade. Assuming 1.5% of those people adopt a vegetarian diet for 10 yrs (or, in total, that group of people cut down their entire animal consumption just 1.5%), we will have saved 28,500 animals from a life of constant suffering. Personally, [leafleting and] saving almost 100 animals each year [per person] feels really empowering.
I could never make this much of a difference in my entire life by just changing my diet.”
Guest: “Are you really a chef?”
Chef Alex: “Yes, really.”
Guest: “OK, thanks! Wait–can I have two? My neighbor would love this!”
“Thank you to everyone who helped, and also to Sun Flour Baking for donating vegan cookie samples, for the fifth successive year!”
-Tammy & Chris, BAVeg co-founders
Event/Volunteer Coordinator: Tammy
Parade Volunteers: Alex, Ari, and Chris
Tabling Volunteers: Anna, Chris, Dana, Denise, Josh, Katherine, Mark, Myles, Peggy, Tammy and Warren
Leafleting Volunteers: Alex, Alvaro, Andrew, Ari, Blue, Chris, Dyanna, Jack, Kansinee, Lucia, Mark, Myles, Nora, Ron, Tammy and Warren
Setup & Takedown (both days): Alex, George, Chris, and Tammy
Vegan Cookie Samples: Sun Flour Baking
Literature: Vegan Outreach, PETA, PCRM, Farm Sanctuary, Mercy for Animals, United Poultry Concerns, BAVeg
Visit the photo gallery to see BAVeg volunteers give everyone food for thought. Over 100 photos from our 2 days at SF LGBT Pride Celebration 2007.