Photos courtesy of LBVF.
It seems that one of the only grievances about the inaugural Long Beach Vegan Festival was that the lines were too long. Not a bad problem to have, considering that what was expected to be an event attended by 8,000 people, drew an estimated 10,000 herbivores and omnivores to Rainbow Lagoon Park in downtown Long Beach.
“It was awesome to see people from so many backgrounds [and] ages all come together in Vegan Love and have the time of their lives,” stated LBVF Co-founder Kawani Brown.
Brown and her husband, Edward Yniguez, started organizing LBVF about a year ago, making sure to pack the park with cruelty-free food options, animal-friendly vendors as well as a musical lineup to keep the crowd groovin’. Attendees came from all over Southern California, including San Diego, for a taste of what the city’s first LBVF had to offer.
“Thank you LBVF,” stated one attendee. “We drove out from San Diego and everything [was] amazing. The beautiful weather, the food, music and vibes.”
The Vegan Chili Cook Off gave 12 participants a chance to put their best chili forward, while a panel of judges including David Carter (The 300lb Vegan), Chef Roberto Martin (owner of eLOVate Kitchen and author of “Cooking for Carnivores”) and Anji Bee and Ryan Lum of Healthy Happy Vegan YouTube Channel did the taste-testing.
The enthusiastic cook-off winner, Tamara Lopez, stated, “I hope my chili warms your taste buds and bellies,” and took home the Vegan Chili Champion Trophy and a Lazy Acres gift basket.
Visit the LBVF Facebook page here to stay up-to-date with future festival happenings.
Asia Morris is a Long Beach native covering arts and culture for the Long Beach Post. You can reach her on Twitter and Instagram @theasiamorris and via email at [email protected]
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