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An intersectional vegan treehugging geek living in the Cayuga Nation aka Ithaca, NY, USA. Peace and love!

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It Ain’t Easy Being Green: Memoirs of a Veggie Cowgirl

Erin McNellis went veggie while living in Ithaca – and now she’s our first guest author! “Being in such a progressive place definitely influenced my decision,” she told me, when she sent this piece in for the site.

It Ain’t Easy Being Green: Memoirs of a Veggie Cowgirl
(Note: names have been changed to protect the innocent!)

I became a vegetarian reluctantly. My two best friends in high school were vegetarians, so for years I had no choice but to champion the life of the carnivore. While Kate and Jessica wrinkled their pretty noses, I was the girl going out with the boys for all-you-can-eat ribs at Big Ed’s Barbecue. I believed in the food chain, meat was delicious, but also – and not unimportantly – eating meat marked me as a different kind of girl, one who made dirty jokes and drank hard liquor and just might be talked into a ride on the mechanical bull in the back of Big Ed’s.
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Authors wanted!

Thanks to everyone who answered the poll on what this site should provide to the Ithaca vegan community. The highest-rated site features people would like are:

  • Timely event listings for local potlucks, social gatherings, and events 16%
  • Profiles of local vegans and vegan organizations 16%
  • A place where I can post stuff too – I want to be an author! 16%
  • Vegan recipes 16%

So, by popular demand, let’s get some more voices in here! Does anyone want to be an author, or know someone who would like to write for this site? Please check out our call for authors.

Big vegan birthday bash: You’re invited

Sylvester Johnson is the author of a free video slideshow about health and healing, and he’s a real mover and shaker in the Ithaca vegan community. Come help celebrate his 60th birthday on October 17th, and enjoy some live music, delicious vegan food, and the company of many local vegan groups.

Please join Club Veg, Ithaca Vegan Circle, Ithaca Vegans, Vegan Meetup, and Ithaca Vegan Parents to eat and dance to live music performed by the semi-acoustic band Radio London on October 17th 2009 from 6:30 PM at the Women’s Community Building, 100 West Seneca Street Ithaca NY (map).

Come tell Sylvester he’s 60 (preferably in song) on his actual birthday October 17th. Help him enter his sensational sixties!

Your presence will be your present (no other presents, please). Sylvester will provide dinner (his signature lentil stew, and yams, chips, hummus, salsa, and Food for the Planet’s tofu cheese cake as well as cider, and BYOB), so no need to bring food unless you are so inspired. If you are so inspired your variety will be quite welcome, with the guideline being any plant-sourced foods, for this occasion please withholding animal-based such as honey, eggs, butter, cheese, and flesh.

If you can, bring a plate and utensils. However, please come even without them, because disposable utensils and plates will be readily available.

An RSVP to Contactsj@mac.com would be welcome.

Hope to see you soon, and that you’re having a great day! Best regards,
Sylvester Johnson

Unexpected Farm – veganic farming in the Finger Lakes

"swap flyer at unexpected farms - veganic!" by Shira GoldingUnexpected Farms has a booth at the Ithaca Farmers Market where you can buy their herbs, winter greens, root vegetables, beans, peas, lettuce, squash, strawberries, asparagus, peppers, and other veganic produce. (This means the food was grown without the use of animal labor, fertilizers, pesticides, etc.)

The farmers are really nice people who are kind to every animal on their land, from the cows they’ve adopted to the insects trying to eat the vegetables.

Anyone else out there a veganic farmer or gardener, or know someone who is? Please tell us about it in the comments!

Photo by Shira Golding.

Ithaca vegans are potlucky

Ithaca Vegan Circle potluck - photo by Ariel Liliquoi GoldHere’s a brief overview of the various vegan potlucks happening right now in the Ithaca area – there are a lot to choose from.

  • Vegan Tuesdays! (69members) – a Facebook group holding weekly potluck dinners hosted at members’ houses.
  • Ithaca Vegans (34 members) – they offer “weekly coffee meetups, potlucks, recipe swaps, cooking classes, activism, and more! Anyone interested in the vegan lifestyle is welcome to attend events. Raw vegans are also welcome.”
  • Ithaca Vegan Parents Network (47 members) – in addition to other happenings, these folks organize potlucks. They write, “Parents of kids of all ages (including unborn!) from all types of families are welcome. We also welcome parents working on transitioning their families to veganism, and are happy to provide advice and support (and recipes!).”
  • Ithaca Vegan Circle (28 members) – these folks organize potlucks including an annual Regional Plant-sourced Potluck that brings people from all over the region to our area.
  • The Ithaca Area Vegan Meetup Group (109 members) – among other activities, this group hosts dinners for a fee, and organizes potlucks for free. Membership fee is $5 per year to pay for Meetup site.

Anyone know of others I’m missing, or have corrections or reviews? Please post a comment!

The photo is of an Ithaca Vegan Circle potluck, and was taken by Ariel Liliquoi Gold.

Farm Sanctuary: A new home for animals rescued from farms

Isadora or Duncan - not sure who! (rescued goat now residing at Farm Sanctuary)I love Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen. I brought busloads of kids there when I worked at Cornell University, both my own age and high schoolers, volunteered there with my partner, and know that those visits have played a pivotal role in my veganism going from something I was “trying out” to something I can’t wait to teach to my future children! There’s something special about meeting the animals that being vegan is benefiting. You can know abstractly that being vegan is helping, but it makes that benefit vastly more visible and real when you go and actually hang out with the chickens and cows and turkeys and pigs and other beautiful, sweet animals running around at Farm Sanctuary.

You can visit the Farm, and sponsor an animal or adopt one. On their website you can donate, find action alerts and volunteer opportunities, and get access to the many educational resources and factory farming photos and videos that they offer.

This goat pictured here is either Isadora or Duncan (I’m not sure who, sorry!), one of two goats who escaped from a live market in NYC. You can read their story here.

Anyone have a favorite memory from a visit to Farm Sanctuary, or an experience adopting or fostering? Please post a comment.

Vegan sweets at the Ithaca Farmer’s Market

"another day at the market for joe and annie" of Free Critter Baking Co. - photo by Shira GoldingWe’re very lucky to have not just one but two booths offering up vegan sweets at the Ithaca Farmers Market:

  1. Free Critter Baking Co. makes vegan cheesecakes, brownies, cookies, and cupcakes. You can also find them at the Trumansburg Farmer’s Market.
  2. Emmy’s Organics specializes in raw, gluten-free vegan treats: macaroons, granola, fudge, and chocolate sauce. You can also buy their goods at Food for the Planet, Greenstar Coop, and Ludgate Farms.

Photo of Joe and Annie of Free Critter Baking Co. by Shira Golding.

Welcome to Vegan Ithaca

When my partner and I moved to Ithaca, New York last year, we wished that there was an easy way to find the vegan community in the area. I thought, wouldn’t it be nice if there was one place where I could find info on vegan and animal rights-related events, groups, and actions? We’ve met so many vegans here and new groups and restaurants are always popping up, so I thought I’d start just such a blog. Please let me know if I’m missing anyone in the links list on the right – and tell me what you think of the blog!