Spring Vegan Success

Over 5000 people flocked to the St Kilda Town Hall to celebrate food, life and freedom at this year’s Spring Vegan Festival. For festival organisers Animal Liberation Victoria it was a wonderful way to honour 40 years of saving lives.

The festival was a success for vegan advocacy beyond our wildest hopes. Thousands of people streamed through the doors all day long, many of them being introduced to veganism for the first time. The Spring Vegan Festival is a fun way for vegans to celebrate our culture and ethics while also bringing awareness to a wider public audience.

After the runaway success of last year’s inaugural Spring Vegan Festival held at Meat Market in North Melbourne, this year the St Kilda Town Hall lawns were awash with people eager to try delicious fare from Melbourne’s best plant-based food vendors and stalls. The lush garden setting offered friends and family an ideal opportunity to share a relaxing meal together.

Inside the main hall, visitors were treated to live music from vegan musicians and performers as they browsed stalls including Vegan Perfection, Australia’s largest importer of vegan foods; Prana On, fitness supplements; Ace Cookies, purveyors of delicious handmade biscuits; Vegan Style footwear, offering stylish vegan shoes and accessories; and VeganPet, vegan dog and cat food suppliers. Visit our Stallholders page for a complete list of our vendors this year.

Upstairs, not-for-profit groups such as the Save Movement and Wala Animal Sanctuary brought awareness and education to the public, both about the issues animals face as well as how their groups work to save and protect animals. Our Stallholders page has a full list of the not-for-profit groups who participated.

We also had an amazing line-up of Talks and Workshops this year, with many events booking out online before the day. Lucy Stegley of Raw Events, who organised the Festival Talks program, put together a thought provoking and varied schedule, including Healthy Inside & Out, discussing mental and physical health for vegans; Vegan Entrepreneurs, a panel of vegan business owners who discussed their experiences of building their businesses; Young Activists, a vegan youth panel; and Vegainz, a panel of fitness specialists discussing their approach to vegan fitness.

ALV organised a schedule of Workshops designed to offer a more interactive approach to learning including Yoga, cooking workshops, vegan nutrition and creating zero waste. Visit our What’s On page to see the full program of Talks and Workshops.

We had a quality line-up of musicians and performers on the main stage, including Serenity Uki, Lara Prokop, All Truism and Casey Martin of Run Rabbit Run. For a full list of our wonderful performers, visit our What’s On page.

The Kid’s Corner was a fun all-day event for kids where they could draw and frame their artwork, colour-in, and make sheep masks and badges, while a professional face painter was on hand to paint designs by request.

For 40 years Animal Liberation Victoria (ALV) has worked to save lives and promote veganism as the best defence against institutionalised violence toward animals. The 40 Years Of Saving Lives exhibition showcased archival photos from the humble beginnings of ALV up to the present day.

Patty Mark, founder of ALV, was generously on hand to chat about her years of experience on the front line of the animal movement in Australia. Patty started the Open Rescue movement, a completely non-violent approach to animal rescue where participants do not hide their identities as they document conditions on factory farms and rescue sick and dying animals in need. The Open Rescue movement went on to inspire other activists around the world to take the same approach.

If you’d like to support ALV and ensure the continuation of the Spring Vegan Festival, please consider visiting our Donate page and become a monthly supporter. For as little as the cost of one cup of coffee per week your support will make all the difference.