Author: jess sconé

Late Summertime Crunk: Q & A with Bianca Phillips

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Hey there! Welcome to the first edition of our Summertime Q & A series at Vida Vegan Headquarters!  This series will give a glimpse into our past alumni’s upcoming projects, seasonal shenanigans and reveal what they really learned at VVC2013. They’re sharing which class sticks out in their minds so many months later, and just what they’d like to see more and less of in vegan blogging, a question that’s always on our minds.

First up, we’re joined by the one-and-only Bianca Phillips, of long-time vegan favorite blog, Vegan Crunk

Ms. Crunk.
Ms. Crunk.

So Bianca, what have you been up to this summer?

Traveling to various VegFests to promote Cookin’ Crunk, picnicking with friends, went to Bonnaroo.

Why did you decide to attend Vida Vegan Con II?

Because Vida Vegan Con I was, like, the best couple of days of my life! For real! And II was just as amazing! Loved seeing all my old blogger friends and meeting new people.

Looking back, what was the most memorable class?

Definitely Susan V’s advanced photography class

How has your blog changed since the three-day conference?

Hmmm….I wish I had a better answer here. It hasn’t changed at all. I really could use a re-design. Maybe one day soon.

How did VVC2013 affect your culinary style and home cooking?

I’ve been making the hell out of some Soy Curls.

Who were you really excited to meet?

Ashlee Piper! (and then we didn’t even get time to hang out … Ashley: You and me, cocktails. It’s gonna happen one day.) And JoJo!! And Sayward!!!

Any nice surprises you’d like to share? Special memories of VVC2013?

Going to the vegan strip club after the galarama and having a stripper place her ta-tas into my picture of vegan taquitos. Best food porn ever!

So, have you started reading any new blogs?

Yep! Lots! Especially loving From A to a Vegan.

What would you like to see more or less of in (vegan) blogging?

My favorite blogs are photo-heavy and personal. I like reading about other people’s lives and what they ate for dinner. I’m not as into recipe blogs, just because I’m up to ears in cookbooks at home.

Image source: Yelp.com

What would you like to see the organizers incorporate into the next VVC?

Oh gosh! What if we had a VVC 5k?! I say that, but I know I’d actually be too hungover to run it.

Lastly, what was your favorite meal in Portland, outside of the conference? (as if you could resist!)

Probably the box of a dozen Voodoo Doughnuts that I ate on for days. Also, that corn dog at Hungry Tiger Too is OFF THE CHAIN, yo.

Broken record time: As always, stay tuned for more!

Our Summertime Q & A series will continue far into VeganMoFo.

You can check out Bianca’s own recaps on VVC2013 right here: Vida Vegan Con Part I and Vida Vegan Con Part 2.

We miss you, Bianca!

Behind the Scenes: Vida Vegan Summertime Stuff

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Why, hello there, VeganMoFo VII!  Vida Vegan Headquarters is kicking off our big month of memories with the most recent, by sharing some photographic evidence that all three of your friendly organizers have managed to experience some good old-fashioned summer time-ing.  

Without further adieu, an Instagram collection:

Janessa: Double scoop of white chocolate & oreo vegan ice cream in Vienna. @Janessapk
Michele: A duo of Sweet Hereafters, Sweet Hereafter. Now, that’s a summer afternoon well spent. @VidaVeganHQ
Jess: Continued to spend her summer as a farmers market groupie. Nothing new there. @jdfunks
Janessa: literally found herself on Abbey Road. @Janessapk
Michele: Conquered giardiniera and is hopefully going to share… @VidaVeganHQ
Jess: had an ongoing rotation of fancy homemade vegan cheeses and pickles. @jdfunks
Janessa: continued documenting amazing photos on her #Janessagoesthere tour with these schoolkids caught in a thunderstorm in Vietnman. @Janessapk
Michele: Loves summertime salsa. Enough said. @VidaVeganHQ
Jess: finally lived out her small dream of judging a cooking competition, with the Vegan Iron Chef Pop Up! Taco Shop! community cook-off. @jdfunks
Bonus Vida Vegan Headquarters international Google Hangout time. Way more fun that it looks! @Janessapk

And there’s your quick taste of what Janessa, Michele and myself have been up to this summer since the whirlwind weekend that was VVC2013. All three of us are also doing VeganMoFo over at our own blogs, so catch more at Epicurious Vegan, Vegtastic Voyage and Get Sconed!

See you back here soon! There’s so, so much in store at Vida Vegan Headquarters.

What’s new with Katie of Vegan Noms?

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The summer is flying by and as proud organizers, we’ve been wondering what everyone has been up to since VVC2013! So, we reached out to our attendees through our official Vida Vegan Headquarters Facebook page and wanted to share the lively results. Here’s the inspirational update from Katie of Vegan Noms, another 2011 and 2013 Gold star alumnae:

ProfilePic2013 has been one hell of a year! After reorienting to day-to-day life after the whimsical whirlwind that was VVC2013, I’ve made deeper commitments to cleaner eating, keeping moving, and appreciating the details in life. In a few short days I will find myself having completed my Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling and embarking on the next chapter in my career. Looking forward to keeping up with bloggers and connecting with new vegans along the way… Things couldn’t be better!

For Katie’s latest updates, reviews and fresh recipes, head on over to Vegan Noms right now.

As always, stay tuned for more updates from Vida Vegan Headquarters & whirlwind it up!

Catching up with Carrie Forrest, VVC Gold Star Alumnae

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The summer is flying by and as proud organizers, we’ve been wondering what everyone has been up to since VVC2013! So, we reached out to our attendees through our official Vida Vegan Headquarters Facebook page and wanted to share the lively results. Here’s what Carrie Forrest, a 2011 and 2013 Gold star alumnae (which is something we just made up for repeat attendees and totally want to roll with) had to say:

Photographic evidence of enjoying summer in California.
Photographic evidence of enjoying summer in California.

I just finished my master’s degree project in public health nutrition on “The Differences in Selected Disease Occurrence Between Vegetarians and Non-Vegetarians” to help update a paper that Dr. Barnard from PCRM published 20 years ago. I continue to add recipes to my best-selling recipe app for iPhones and iPads, Vegan Delish. When I’m not glued to my laptop or playing with my new kitchen appliances (I just got a soy milk maker…LOVE!), I’m outside enjoying the beautiful scenery of the California Central Coast.

If you’d like to catch up some more with Carrie, find out more about that intriguing soy milk maker and see what else she’s surely up to, check out her blog Carrie on Vegan, and her resourceful recipe app, Vegan Delish.

Stay tuned for more from Vida Vegan Headquarters!

THANK YOU #VVC2013!

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Thank you so much to the attendees, speakers, and sponsors of the second (sold-out! internationally attended!) Vida Vegan Bloggers Conference!

This event, the now three-day extravaganza (plus, another Galarama), has grown so much, and we thank you all so much, for making it even more than what we ever thought it could be. Your friendly organizers have spent the past two years pouring our hearts and minds into this event, and constantly get chills from the community that’s grown from our vegan bloggers conference—for writers and readers alike.

There’s so much more to say, and so much to reflect on, but we need some sleep (and kale), and we’re sure you do too.

We’re emailing our attendees for feedback (and a ticket giveaway to the next Con, what the hey?), so be on the lookout for that, and as always, stay tuned right here for updates on what and when and where our next shindig(s) will be.

In the meantime, go blog (better than ever!) and peruse all the #VVC2013 hashtags on Instagram and Twitter and all over. We’ve seen lots of folks live-blogging and recapping already, and remain in awe.

vvc2013 wideshot
VEGANS!
We can’t say it enough: THANK YOU!

The Sexy Vegan Hosts our Galarama Tonight!

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Hey, all! The Galarama soiree is tonight!

Advance tickets sales are now over, but there will be tickets for $20 at the door. Bring your local friends and plus-ones!

vvc-2013-galarama-poster-web

Here’s our bar menu reposted from Galarama.org:

sodeliciouslogo_200-2011

#Galarama Bar Menu

 

Featured Cocktail & Mocktail: So Delicious Creamsicle

$6/ $4 (sans vodka)

Grain-free vodka, mandarin Jarritos (or soda of choice), orange juice,

splash of So Delicious coconut creamer. Over ice.

 

Grain-Free Vodka   +   Choice Of:

Mandarin Jarritos

Strawberry Jarritos

Cranberry Hot Lips Soda

Orange Mango Spindrift Soda

Lemonade Sprindrift Soda

Grapefruit Sprindrift Soda

Spindrift Raspberry Lime Seltzer Water

$6

 

Root Beer or Soda Float $4*

with any of the above flavors and a scoop of So Delicious Vanilla Ice Cream

*Made with Vodka $6

 

***Any drink in keepsake VVC mug $10***

 

Beer + Wine

BridgePort Summer Squeeze (bottle) $4

Vegan Wine (Red or White) $5

 Bottle Service:

Loise d’ Estree Brut Sparkling Wine $20

 

Jello Shots! $3 or 2 for $5

assorted flavors ~ vegan, organic, made with Monopolowa grain-free vodka

 

Bottle of Spindrift, Hot Lips or Jarritos Soda $2

Coffee $1

Plus: The Sexy VeganTandem Treats, Taco Pedaler, Artisan Vegan Cheeses from Miyoko Schinner, Eastside Distilling, our exciting Silent Auction for Chimp Sanctuary Northwest, and the So Delicious Ice Cream Spectacular.
Your host for the evening: Brian "Sexy Vegan" Patton
Your host for the evening: Brian “Sexy Vegan” Patton

Ice Cream Sign_Large

Location (!!): Staver Locomotive, our unique home for the evening, is located at 2537 NW 29th Portland, OR 97210  Trimet.org #15 bus and Portland Streetcar to NW 23rd. Use the Trimet TripPlanner to easily figure it out! There is street parking and free parking in the Powells Warehouse lot.

VVC II Anticipation: Friday’s New Product Spotlight & Meet the Exhibitors

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One of the roughly 400 bajillion new elements we’re introducing to Vida Vegan Con II is the legit New Product Spotlight on Friday afternoon. This spotlight happens at the very opening of the Exhibit Area (11:30am), located inside your home base for the weekend: the Kridel Grand Ballroom, where all meals, refreshments, announcements the Expert Corner, All Things Vegan Radio (and more!) will reside.  All of our snazzy, supportive exhibitors will be providing samples for your enjoyment during this Spotlight (most of which, non-surprisingly, will surely offer very tasty bites)…some of which may be brand spankin’ new!

Here’s the scoop with our full lineup of 2013 Exhibitors, listed in alphabetical order. Any new product picks they’ve told us about are included below, but hey, every table will have plenty to share and discuss, no doubt! 

  • Attune Foods, Erewhon Buckwheat & Hemp cereal
  • The Better Bean Company 
  • Bob’s Red Mill new Grains of Discovery product line features Amaranth, Chia Seed, Farro, Kamut, Millet, Quinoa, Sorghum, Spelt and Teff from around the world
  • Chicago Vegan Foods > We haven’t heard about a new product just yet, but there will be S’mores at the Friday night Pop Up and Nacho Teese at the Saturday Build-a-Bowl lunch buffet. You know what to do.
  • Coconut Bliss Salted Caramel & Chocolate Pint, Strawberry Love Bars, Cafe Latte Bars
  • Compassion Couture Cornelia Guest Roxy Clutch, Neuaura Arisa, Cri de Coeur – Pia & Matt & Nat Cara in Ocean (tabling on Saturday & Sunday!)
  • Earth Balance Vegan Aged White Cheddar Puffs, Vegan Buttery Flavor Popcorn, Vegan Aged White Cheddar Popcorn & P.B. Popps, travel-sized coconut peanut butter
  • Go Veggie! Strawberry Cream Cheese Alternative
  • Heidi Ho Cheeses Chia Cheese Sauce
  • KeVita Mojita & Daily Cleanse flavors
  • Missionary Chocolates Coconut Palm Sugar Truffle (tabling on Friday & Sunday!)
  • Nasoya Nayonaise Original & NayoWhipped
  • Pacific Foods Organic Refried Pinto Beans, Organic Baked Beans, Organic Refried Black Beans, Organic Refried Black Beans with Green Chiles, Organic Vegetable Lentil & Roasted Red Pepper Soup, reduced Sodium – Organic Spicy Black Bean & Kale Soup, Unsweetened Hemp Original Non-dairy Beverage, Unsweetened Hemp Vanilla Non-dairy Beverage
  • Pacific Northwest Kale Chips Cascade Ranch flavor
  • Peanut Butter & Co bigger 28 ounce jars of all their flavors
  • So Delicious Dairy Free Chocolate Coconut Milk Beverage, Barista Style French Vanilla Creamer, Barista Style Orginal Creamer, Gluten-Free Cookies & Cream Frozen Dessert (look for this last one being debuted during their Sunday Ice Cream Social)
  • Tofurky Artisan sausages: Andouille, Spinach Pesto and Chick’n & Apple
  • Upton’s Naturals Bacon Seitan. They’re not sampling at their table, but, it will be in Sunday’s ‘The Sandwich Board’ lunch buffet so go get some!
  • Vegan Cuts the latest Vegan Cuts Snack Box, featuring 7 or more vegan products, ranging from sweet treats to household fun stuff.
  • Wayfare  ♥ We Can’t Say It’s Ice Cream

More to come at 11:30am on Friday…

If you’re tabling and have a new product to include, let us know and we’ll announce it all on Friday at the Spotlight.

The full list of exhibitors and sponsors is located here.

Portland’s Late Night Vegan-Friendly Spots

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Hey, wild things and night owls!
Your vegan vacation has finally arrived and we bet a few of you might be thinking, ‘so what’s going on after the Galarama?’ Fret not, Portland has quite a few late night options for those looking for beer as well as those seeking a place to hang out with fellow vegans. And if you’re seeking just another bite of vegan Portland, you’re in luck – the OLCC (Oregon’s liquor commission board) requires bars to offer food, and it’s often some of the tastiest food in town. 
The quintessential Bye & Bye
Here are some recommendations for where to go in Portland after 9:30 pm (when the Galarama ends), starting with NW Portland and the Pearl District, the closest to Staver Locomotive:

NW/Pearl District

  • Slabtown for vegan gyros & falafel (all vegan menu!)

  • BridgePort Brewpub for microbrews & fancy vegan bowls, open til midnight on weekends

  • Coffee Time cozy spot on NW 21st that’s open til 1am on weekends

 

Downtown/SW

  • Ground Kontrol amazing arcade open til 2:30 with tons of vegan options for a few bills, including cashew cheese nachos & pretzels to pair with your pinball delights, and a special late night menu, too  (21+ after 5pm)

  • Petunia’s Pastries gluten-free, vegan bakery with Stumptown coffee & cocktails, open til 10 on weekends (and offering 15% off for VVC folks)

  • Powell’s Books wander the multi-block bookstore til 11pm, and then pick up a slice at…

  • Sizzle Pie is seriously vegan-friendly and seriously open til 4am on weekends, plus, has gluten-free crusts for personal pies

  • VooDoo Doughnuts the downtown location has outdoor seating for you to stop and enjoy your yeasted or cake (or both) vegan doughnuts

  • Tube it may be divey and packed, but we hear there’s a new menu and they’ve still got the Professor Nanotears (lil english muffin, ham tube, cheeze & chipotle delights)

  • XV in case you want a little yam fries and curried ketchup while you dance the rest of the night away… there’s also the seriously delicious EmergenC mojito

  • Backspace gamer cafe with Stumptown Coffee, Tao of Tea, and plenty of vegan sandwich and salad options. Open til 12am on weekends.

  • Lúc Lác Vietnamese restaurant & lounge that’s open til 4am on weekends. Vegan & gluten-free options. We recommend the Tofu Salad Vermicelli Bún.

 

Downtown VooDoo Doughnuts…..the line is usually shorter when night falls

Inner Eastside

  • Sizzle Pie yeah, there’s two on the street. Go Portland. This one is also open til 4am with vegan options in the case.

  • Star Bar has a vegan lemongrass banh mi, which is always a plus in our book, plus, a bunch of options that are vegan or can be veganized with Field Roast and whatnot.

  • Robo Taco vegan-friendly taqueria with a grilled pineapple Soy Curl filling that’s open til 3:30am on weekends

  • Dig a Pony Hip bar with sweet drinks, a BBQ tempeh sandwich and fried plantains for the vegans. Open til 2am.

And Southeast…

  • Hungry Tiger Too …the legend of the vegan corn dog (and tofuffalo) is true. Open til 10pm daily.

  • Pied Cow SE Belmont cafe with outdoor garden, hookahs, tea & beer (get food elsewhere). All ages & open til 1am on weekends.

  • Rimsky-Korsakoffee House intimate coffeeshop ‘speakeasy’ open til 1am on weekends

  • Southeast Grind 24 hour coffeeshop with Stumptown Coffee, down on SE Powell Blvd

  • Sweet Hereafter damn fine cocktails, mocktails (ask at the bar) and equally tasty all-vegan menu (the Buffalo Soy Curl sandwich is bomb – and available as a bowl or gluten-free wrap, and they have the best miso chive cheese), plus, raw cheesecake. Gets packed at night, heads up!

  • Townshend’s Division Street Teahouse open til 10pm with possibly the loveliest tea selection in town

  • Whiffies the one-and-only fried handpie cart with sweet and savory vegan options. Go get it.

    BBQ Tofu fried pie, Whiffies
  • Potato Champion! located across from Whiffies with vegan poutine and mini dipping options for their Belgian-style frites

  • White Owl Social Club Come on, you know we love them. Surely, a few of you are ‘members’ by now!

  • Dots Cafe This Clinton Corner joint is pretty much a Portland institution (even under new owners) with their tofu sauce, cocktails, sweet booths and velvet paintings.

 

North/Northeast

  • The Bye & Bye Once again, you know it, you love it, and you’ve probably got a Mason Jar of *something* in your hands, and are awaiting a Meatball Sub or Weeping Tiger sandwich.

  • The Old Gold This bar on N. Killingsworth offers signature cocktails, house-popped popcorn and a tofu banh mi – they pretty much expect Janessa *all* the time.

  • Townshend’s Alberta Street Teahouse open til 10pm, just like the one in SE, but this one gets even more bonus points because you can bring Back to Eden treats and sundaes inside. Duh.

 

Karaoke Spots

  • Suki’s You may fondly remember this from our visit post-Con in 2011, and just a lovely, lovely, divey dive. Practically speaking, it’s still your best bet for karaoke fun downtown!

  • Voicebox If you like singing in the shower, you just may prefer karaoke in private rooms. Open til 2am on weekends (all ages til 9pm).

  • Chopsticks Fun karaoke spot on E Burnside located by plenty of bars on NE 28th. Offers vegan fried rice (have to ask for it) Open til 2:30am on weekend.

  • The Alibi Tiki Lounge Intense and vibrant karaoke spot with a tropical theme. Located on the Yellow MAX Line. Also open til 2:30am on weekend. Great if you’re staying in the neighborhood.

Skip: The Boiler Room downtown and their stupid cover charge.

Late Night Delivery

  • Taco The Town really, late-night, taco delivery totally exists……via bike, no less (with vegan options, naturally)

  • Hammy’s Hey baby, this pizzeria delivers to the Eastside til the wee hours and has both housemade vegan Parmesan and Field Roast Italian sausage. Holler.

If you have a suggestion, add it below!
Feel free to start your own informal VVC meet-ups…..karaoke, anyone?  For more Portland Vegan Dining, Shopping & Tourist ideas,check out our official While You’re in Town selection and the VVC 2013 Google Map

Portland Picks with Michelle Schwegmann, Herbivore Clothing

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And we’re back with the seemingly final round in our continuing series of personalized Portland Picks, and what better person to wind down with then a resident of the vegan mini mall (and returning VVC Speaker, of course)!?! These recommendations are from trusty Portland vegan locals and lovers, and we bet all our attendees, whether you’re arriving early or not, want to squeeze in a little time outside of the busy, busy conference schedule to wander in the vegan wonderland. Here we go!
So true.

Your Name:  Michelle Schwegmann

Vegan Mini Mall, Represent: The Herbivore Clothing Company

indeed. Pins by Herbivore, Image source: weheartit.com

Let’s begin….where should folks go in Portland?

…besides the vegan mini-mall (duh!) Washington Park for the Rose Test Garden, or for a real plant lover and something totally un-touristic, browse the beautiful plants at Portland Nursery on SE Stark Street. When the sun comes out in the spring, I can’t wait to slowly walk around there and dream of retiring to be a full-time gardener. Succulents to native plants, it’s the equivalent of a Powells Books in the plant/gardening world.

Where to dine?

I keep it simple with food. For fancy I am a Portobello girl. Not fancy has me at the Bye & Bye at night or Canteen in the daylight. 

How about a cup of coffee?

Since I work next door to Sweetpea Baking Company, that’s my best bet. And because she has biscuits. Every. Day!!!

Let’s shop…

Michelle on the Herbivore Clothing website
Michelle on the Herbivore Clothing website

I love Fubonn for international foods and crazy faux meats, Foodfight! for my daily kale purchase, and N. Mississippi Ave. to wander.

Also, Wanderlust for adorable vintage, and of course, any thrift store. If you are super brave, hit the bins!

For a One-of-a-Kind Portland experience?

While in Portland, I highly recommend going to one of our city parks and spending at least 15 minutes laying underneath a giant tree. It’s like a power nap. You’ll be a better person for it, trust me. Try Laurelhurst Park, Peninsula Park, Columbia Park, Couch Street Park, Fernhill Park, Sellwood Park….look for the trees!

Thanks for tuning in! Find Michelle this weekend moderating the ‘Compassionate Parenting’ panel. For more Portland Vegan Dining, Shopping & Tourist ideas, check out our official While You’re in Town selection and the VVC 2013 Google Map See you all on Friday!

Extra, Extra! Read All About It! (Five last minute, super special #VVC2013 updates)

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The week of Vida Vegan Con II has finally begun! If you’re attending, you should have received a super important email about all the super fun and vital arrival and conference details – so check your inbox! Here are five more new, great aspects for the return of the Con we’d like to share:
ONE!

Let’s get together! Thursday’s Unofficial Official Meet & Greet at the White Owl Social Club (21+, folks) from 330-530 and the Intrepid Herbivores’ Episode 1 Screening starting at 6 pm at People’s Co-op. See you there – Details on the links! Meet your new friends! Old friends! Mac & Cheese burgers! Pickle chips! Microbrews! Jones soda on tap! Vegan TV show! Vegans!!!

TWO!

Galarama.orgSaturday night: The Galarama & Silent Auction is on! Remember – it’s offsite at Staver Locomotive in NW Portland. It’s open to the public and for a great cause, Chimp Sanctuary NW, so tell your local friends to come along! Tickets are right here (& cheaper in advance).

So much great stuff is going on: Emcee The Sexy Vegan, DJs Harry Skelter & MelisserAGoGo, fancy Artisan Vegan Cheeses by Miyoko Schninner, specialty So Delicious coconut cocktails & mocktails, BridgePort Summer Squeeze (exclusive new bottle variety!), wine, Spindrift and Hot Lips sodas, complimentary snacks, and even special menus from two legitimate bike food carts: Tandem Treats & Taco Pedaler. There will be tons of gluten-free options all over the place. Dressing up is encouraged, but hoodies are totally fine, too.

And hey, bring some cash. There’s no ATM on the premises.

The charming Tandem Treats mobile
The fun Tandem Treats mobile, an all vegan bike cart at the PSU Park Blocks
THREE!

In case you haven’t heard, to add even more awesome into the VVC weekend, there’s the Vegan Pop-Up, Gorditas & S’mores Social (Post VVC Day-1) Hangout at the Vegan Mini Mall.

Details: Friday, May 24th, 6 pm till the wheels fall off. More info on the Facebook event.

The Gist: After Vida Vegan Con’s opening day, come on over to the Vegan Mini-Mall (SE 12th & Stark) and hang out, socialize, and eat seitan tacos lovingly made by Upton’s Naturals and Food For Lovers Vegan Queso (at Food Fight!) Then hit Herbivore for S’mores served up by our friends from Chicago Vegan Foods (Dandies!). Then, hit Sweetpea for ice cream sandwiches and say hi to Panda with Cookie!

 

FOUR!

Local videoteam Brytcast will be filming bits all weekend long for a lil’ Vida Vegan video- feel free to say hi and let them know if you’d like to interview!


FIVE!

You know where you’re going, right? Right! Here’s everything you need to know about actually getting to the Portland Art Museum. We start out in the Kridel Ballroom, which is the central happenings of the conference, and located on the 3rd floor of the Mark Building (take the elevator or walk up the stairs).

The Mark Building – start here! Image source: portlanddailyphotos.blogspot.com

Remember, keep your name badge on at all times!

#VVC2013