Making New Vegetarians – Maker Faire 2009

Sunday, June 14th, 2009
Two kids ask Julie about vegetarianism

Two kids ask Julie about vegetarianism

Bay Area Vegetarians hosted an information table at the 2009 Maker Faire held at the San Mateo Expo Center on May 30th and May 31st.

We had hundreds of people visit our booth and gather vegan information, and ask questions about vegetarianism. It was fun to meet the BAVeg members who came by to say hi, including Ajay who helped us with leafleting. Elizabeth, Ajay, and Tammy distributed 750 Vegetarian Starter Kits via leafleting.

Thank you to

- PETA, PCRM, Farm Sanctuary, Vegan Outreach, and UPC for supporting our outreach by providing materials
- the volunteers who made this possible: Julie, Mila, Mike, Lissy and Ashley, and booth organizers Elizabeth and Tammy
- Maker Faire for inviting us to participate
- Everyone who accepted vegetarian information from us.  We hope this starts you on the path to compassionate and healthy living.

Maker Faire Photos in the BAVeg Gallery

Reading her new Vegetarian Starter Kit

Reading her new Vegetarian Starter Kit

SF LGBT Pride – Love and Let Live

Monday, June 1st, 2009

Bay Area Vegetarians is returning to the 2009 Pride Celebration.  This will be our 7th year participating in PRIDE!

Pride weekend is June 27th and 28th.  We will have an information booth on both days, and will march in the parade on Sunday.  Our parade theme is “Love and Let Live”.  To volunteer for one or both activities, please use the links below.

Booth / Leafleting Veg outreach / Education – SF
Walk/Leaflet with us in the Pride Parade: Love and Let Live – SF

New volunteer opportunities! Please check ‘em out here (added 6/15)

Meet Michelle:  Michelle is coordinating the volunteers for the outreach at the booth this year, and shared a bit about herself with us.  michelle-taylor-cehn

For those who don’t know me, I’m a recent college graduate dedicated to spreading the message of compassionate eating.  In college I was president of the Case Animal Rights & Ethics Society and more recently I’ve been working on a new website, www.veganbreak.com, featuring short videos about veganism in an effort to make veganism more accessible to the general public. I’m eager to get involved in Bay Area veg outreach and can’t wait to meet all of you!


Teaching High School Students Wellness

Thursday, May 7th, 2009
When Marielle Ferreboeuf, Wellness Program Coordinator for the Ida B. Wells High School, contacted Bay Area Vegetarians to give a talk on vegetarianism for the school’s April 2nd Wellness Day, we knew just who to contact! Long-time vegetarian, BAVeg member, and Registered Dietitian Denise Garbinski was happy to take on the job.

Denise, who specializes in plant-based nutrition in her private dietetic practice, gave two 45-minute classes all about vegetarian diets. Reaching approximately 30 students and faculty members, she stressed the benefits of a vegan diet not just for human health but also for the health of animals and the planet.
Her classes were well-received based on the student’s participation and interest in the materials she brought.  Denise said she was grateful for opportunity to promote vegetarianism on behalf of Bay Area Vegetarians.

A big thanks to Denise for her expertise and enthusiasm in accepting this assignment, and to PETA for providing literature.

Fragrance Land (Sunnyvale) closed

Friday, March 20th, 2009

Fragrance Land, a popular Chinese vegetarian restaurant in Cupertino, closed its doors, permanently, earlier this week, bring the number of vegan and vegetarian restaurants in the South Bay to 32. (Click here for list)

Thanks to Sharon, who hosted our monthly dinner at Fragrance Land, for the update.

Leafleting Leprechauns in San Francisco

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009

Saturday was the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in San Francisco, and also the annual Bay Area Vegetarians Leafleting at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.  :-)

BAVeg Leafleting Leprechauns

BAVeg Leafleting Leprechauns

Our team of leafleting leprechauns hit the streets of SF, and handed out 1,500 Vegetarian Stater Kits in one hour!!

THANK YOU Alex, Ari, Lisa, Caroline, Michelle, Donna, Jordan and Tammy! BAVeg volunteers share some thoughts about this activity:

Alex enthused “Event leafleting is always fun, because the crowds are in a good mood. Twice I had people chasing after me to get a brochure! Love that! Leafleting is is so easy, and so effective.  I love thinking about all the people who learned about animal suffering today for the first time.  I wonder how many vegetarians we made?”

Parade attendee reads VSK

Parade attendee reads VSK

“This may have been the easiest leafleting I have ever done! Not a negative comment all morning, a few dozen people came up asking ME for guides (rather than the other way around) and at least 50% of people who I offered I guide to took it. Combine that with a great meal with some inspiring vegetarians, all committed to raising the consciousness of our society, and you’ve got a heck of a finish to my week!” exclaimed Ari.

Michelle adds “It was great fun, and such a happy vibrant crowd that seemed to really embrace the veg message!”

Reading her new VSK

Reading her new VSK

Jordan shares his personal experience.  “I’ve been a vegetarian since 1967, and had little success in getting people to go veg. It came as a big surprise, there is an easy way to recruit new vegetarians. Just hand out leaflets. Some people who read the leaflet decide to eat less meat, some become vegetarians or vegans.

Leafleting is fun. Especially at special events, parades etc, because people let down their guard and are willing to talk to strangers. In a short time you can hand out a lot of leaflets.

Now I organize vegetarian leafleting at some Buddhist teachings I go to, asking Buddhists to go veg. Think about what events you go to that you can leaflet. It’s great to know that you have done something that makes a difference.”

Please watch the BAVeg calendar for the next San Francisco Have a Heart, Go Veg Leafleting activity.

Welcome to Chaat Bhavan (Fremont)

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

Fremont now has it’s second vegetarian restaurant, Chaat Bhavan at 5355 Mowry Avenue.

Ultimate Guide:  Chaat Bhavan – read it, rate it, review it!

Look Back at 2008

Friday, January 16th, 2009

147604_5218January is our annual opportunity to look back at the year that just ended, and to look forward and plan for the new year.

Bay Area Veg was first established in October, 2001 to address a need in the community for one organization that would support both the vegan and vegetarian community, as well as activists interested in veganism and animal rights. That twin dynamic continues to be reflected in the type of events and activities that our members have organized.

In 2008, BAVeg volunteers hosted 168 events:

  • 93 community/social events: Vegan Food parties, restaurant dinners, book club meetings for general fiction as well as non-fiction veg and animal rights topics, volunteer work events, and fundraisers for Animal Place and Farm Sanctuary
  • 75 advocacy/outreach events: letter writing parties, veg leafleting (just under 25K distributed), KFC cruelty protests, tabling outreach, and rodeo and circus protests

The community scene has changed vastly since BAVeg was created in 2001. There are several other ways for veg*ns to connect with each other, including new organizations and new social networking communities like Facebook and meetup.

What is needed now? That is the question for 2009 and beyond. Help us chart our future and influence our growth with your participation. Please, don’t take your veg community and organizations for granted. The reason this is a cliche is because it’s true – many hands make light work. So give us your hand .. and your most brilliant ideas for an awesome 2009.

Please add your suggestions and ideas by commenting in this post, or you may also email us privately via the contact page

Review: The Usual Suspects Cafe

Saturday, May 31st, 2008

I am happy to report that I am optimistic about this new vegetarian restaurant with a heavy emphasis on vegan food. It’s in San Francisco on Broadway St, just off Montgomery, and probably trekkable from Montgomery BART if you’ve got good leg muscles or are allured by vegan food. The Usual Suspects Cafe, opened by Bob Bosco, is making a splash with local veg folks already. It’s a diner, it’s familiar foods made vegan, it’s great desserts, it’s talented chefs cooking with passion & pride, and they’ve got a commitment to organic, too. (In passing, they mentioned a big percentage of their food is organic; I don’t remember the exact number.)

Just hours after eating there last nite, I wrote the official description review in the Ultimate Guide:

Styled like an American diner, this new face in the SF restaurant scene offers a variety of vegan favorites like pizzas, sandwiches, burger, falafel, lasagna .. and they make their own seitan and sauces/salad dressings/cashew cheese. And, yes, vegan desserts, too. In an interesting twist, there are a few pizzas made with dairy, then it says everything is vegan except items which are marked that can be made vegetarian. Room upstairs available for private parties.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Usual Suspects Cafe (SF)

Friday, May 30th, 2008

New vegetarian restaurant (with an emphasis on vegan foods) just opened in SF, The Usual Suspects. Currently only open Tuesday through Saturday but they anticipate offering a weekend brunch. Check ‘em out -

Ultimate Guide: The Usual Suspects

Thanks to Bob for sharing the news!