Who knew Veggie Fest Hamilton was hugely popular?
Today – May 5, 2018 – at the Ancaster Fairgrounds near Hamilton, Ontario, Canada it’s jam-packed, shoulder-to-shoulder and challenging to get a parking spot.
Imagine, a Veggie Fest in a town known for steel production and working class values.
Clearly, times are changing. Veggie Fest, any vegetarian/vegan festival, is an earnest intersection of three growing interest sectors: environmentalism, health and wellness, and pet and animal rights enthusiasts – I’m in the third category.
I’ve been a vegetarian (not vegan) for more than two decades and animal issues is my motivator, though eating much healthier has clearly been a personal benefit.
What’s the first thing I found at Veggie Fest Hamilton 2018? Dog treats, of course.
Dolled-Up (and the vendors were) is an online dessert company selling gluten-free and vegan packaged brownie, cookie and cake mixes … and a line of dog desserts too, free from gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, preservatives or animal products. What’s in them? Peanut butter, fair trade bananas and rice flour.
Did my dog Victor eat them? No, but he’s a little under the weather (more on that in later posts) but his visiting buddy Sasha, a lab-cross, did. And she ate Victor’s.
She also ate the Hemp Treats, though no enthusiastically (spoiled dogs). Richardo’s Hemp is a Guelph-based company selling Ontario hemp products and oils, and yes added a line of crunchy hemp dog treats to their repertoire. These log chews are what you get once the hemp oil is extracted.
Apparently, horses love them so I’ll try them at the barn.
Speaking of the barn, several Southern Ontario farm sanctuaries are represented at Veggie Fest including Cedar Row, providing forever homes to unwanted farm animals for 15 years, and Frog Hollow, a family-run farm providing compassion to mistreated farm animals.
I hope to visit and write about both soon on horsetrotting.net – and give goat yoga a try at Benevolent Barn, also a farm sanctuary and animal rescue.
Shout out to LadyBird Sanctuary, who rescued my beautiful Daisy, and Ralphy’s Retreat, a sanctuary for pot-bellied pigs and farm animals we visited before for horsetrotting.net. If you’re in the St. Williams, Ontario next month, drop into Ralphy’s Third Annual Open House, Sunday, June 24, noon to 4 pm.
The next vegetarian festival: Vegfest in Mississauga, Ontario, May 12, 10 am to 6 pm at Port Credit Memorial Arena.