A week from today the Twin Cities Veg Fest volunteer team will be stuffing 1,000 bags. That’s right, one thousand. This monumental undertaking will enable us to provide you, the festival attendee, with the finest swag this side of the Mississippi. That’s the east side if you’re keeping track. However, we promise that if you cross the bridge near Coffman it will still be the best swag on that side of the Mississippi too!

We’ll also have some special goodies in the first 100 or so bags we hand out. Stay tuned for more details on that soon, but for now a hint. Think cookies. Ok, that wasn’t really a hint so much as telling you what one of the special goodies will be, but there could be more.

Did you know that the day after the festival, we’re also hosting an animal advocacy conference? Well, you know now!

Their Lives, Our Voices gathers activists together for an inclusive, high-quality, hands-on conference focused on empowering advocates in their efforts to help farmed animals. This event is accessible to all animal advocates, showcasing diverse topics and perspectives within our movement. Networking and attendee participation are vital to TLOV’s success, so please come and help make our fourth TLOV conference an exceptional event.

This year’s TLOV will be a one day event on Sunday, October 27 from 9:45am to 5:20pm in the Science Teaching & Student Services Building on the University of Minnesota Minneapolis Campus.

Our featured keynote speaker is Nathan Runkle of Mercy for Animals. We have a great set of speakers lined up for the rest of the day too. They will provide a full day of presentations and workshops that will help you become a better advocate for animals.

Registration is $20, with a $10 registration level available for students and low income individuals. You can register online right now. All paid attendees will receive a vegan lunch as part of their registration fee.

Environmental degradation isn’t just bad for people, it’s also bad for animals. As an organization committed to respect and justice for animals, we are trying to reduce our environmental impact wherever possible. We’ve taken a number of steps to make Veg Fest green.

We’ve banned exhibitors from selling bottled water. We doubt any of them wanted to anyway, but now they can’t, so there. We’ll be providing delicious Minneapolis city water at the event. Bring your water bottle from home to help us reduce waste even further!

Our swag bags are made of 100% post-consumer recycled paper.

We have also asked all exhibitors to use compostables for their samples and food sales. By using compostables in this way, we can significantly reduce the amount of waste produced by this event.

Finally, Veg Fest is all about encouraging people to eat lower on the food chain. This is good for animals suffering in factory farms, and it’s also good for the environment.

Exhibitor Hall

The moment you’ve all been waiting for has arrived. We’ve finally unveiled our list of exhibitors for this year’s festival! We’re thrilled to share this list with you because we have a lot of great companies, organizations, and individuals joining us this year. We’ll keep updating this list as new exhibitors apply (they love to keep us waiting for some reason).

It’s not too late to apply as an exhibitor, but it will be too late soon, so apply today.

Also, don’t forget to buy your t-shirts and posters before the festival.

We have a lot of great volunteer opportunities still available at the festival this year. Do you like to carry heavy things? Help us out with setup and cleanup! Do you like kids? Help out in the kids area! How about pouring non-dairy milks into sample size cups? Join us at the food giveaway table!

Whatever you choose to do, you’ll be helping make this event a success. Every person who moves towards veganism can have an impact on dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of animals over the course of their life. Help us make this festival a life-changing event for as many people as possible!

Last time on Tasty Food at the Festival, we talked about Asase Yaa and Kitty Corner Cafe. But that’s not all the deliciousness we have planned. Yes, gentlepeople of the Internet, we have more tastiness in store.

Flamingo Ethiopian Restaurant

The vegetarian combo at Flamingo
The veg combo at Flamingo

Flamingo is an Ethiopian restaurant on Syndicate St in St. Paul. They’ll be selling a variety of delicious vegan foods. If you’ve never had Ethiopian before, you’re in for a treat. The foods are simply prepared but rich with flavor. Typical ingredients include lentils, collards, potatoes, and many aromatic spices.

Seward Cafe

Blueberry muffins fresh from the oven
Blueberry muffins fresh from the oven

Seward Cafe has been a mainstay of the Seward neighborhood since 1974. They will be selling a variety of delicious vegan baked goods including cookies and muffins. We’re big fans of the Seward Cafe, and their muffins are some of the best we’ve ever had.

For this year’s Twin Cities Veg Fest we are offering you the opportunity to order t-shirts and commemorative posters in advance of the event. Orders will be open until the end of Wednesday, October 16. All orders must be picked up at the festival.

We have t-shirts available in S-XXL in two styles, unisex and women’s fitted. We also have two great commemorative posters for sale.

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While we will probably have a few extra shirts and posters for sale at the event itself, we strongly recommend you purchase yours in advance. We do not want to end the festival with a huge stock of inventory, so we plan to err on the side of too few items, not too many.

Order your shirts and posters today!

We’re thrilled to announce the final two performances for the free Twin Cities Veg Fest concert, two more great Minnesota acts. We have rapper Sean Anonymous and alt rockers Sleepyhead joining us.

Sean Anonymous first found success with the groups Wide Eyes and Bottom Feeders. He released his solo debut album Anonymo in 2012 and since then he’s performed on the Warped Tour, opened for Macklemore at SXSW, and performed at Minneapolis’s own First Ave.

Check out his track Sunny on YouTube:

Sleepyhead is a Minneapolis based alternative rock band influenced by the great Midwest, pine tree’s and Third Eye Blind.

Here’s a live studio video of their song Inscription:

Our final concert lineup is In Defence, Alison Scott, Sean Anonymous, and Sleepyhead.

We’re thrilled to have all these great artists joining us. Please share this post with your friends and family. We’ll post the exact start time for each band soon, so stay tuned to our blog, Facebook page, or Twitter stream.

One of the most important goals for the festival is to showcase delicious vegan food. To that end, we’re excited to announce some of the food vendors that we’ll have at the festival.

Asase Yaa

Food from Asase Yaa
Food from Asase Yaa at the 2012 festival –
Photo by A Frame Forward Photography (www.aframeforward.com)

First up is Asase Yaa. Asase Yaa is a local catering and festival food provider run by the amazing chef Petrina Walker. Petrina will be cooking up a variety of delicious vegan food with influences from Africa to Asia. Her food was a big hit at last year’s festival, and she sold out before the end of the festival, so get yours early this year! Asase Yaa catered the Twin Cities Veg Fest Donor Preview event in August and her food was spectacular.

Kitty Corner Cafe

Kitty Corner Cafe waffle
A vegan waffle with bananas, strawberries, walnuts, and powdered sugar. Photo by Michelle Rosier

We are also excited to have Kitty Corner Cafe as a vendor this year. Kitty Corner Cafe is a relatively new cafe that opened on Washington Ave just east of Cedar earlier in 2013. Owner Zuhal Sari is committed to providing great vegan options, and her shop includes vegan waffles and sandwiches. Kitty Corner will be selling Turkish style vegan waffles served with fruit, nuts, and powdered sugar. We’ve tried them at the shop and they’re fantastic!

Stay tuned for more announcements because we have three more great food vendors to tell you about! Here’s a few hints … Think spring rolls, misir wot, and delicious vegan cookies, muffins, and cupcakes.