Where the Vegetable is King: First-ever Vegan Festival Begins in Dutchess County

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Eating a compassionate, plant-based diet is likely one of the best things you can do for yourself and the planet.  If you already set the vegan table, are thinking about it, or simply curious to learn more, prepare to be inspired and entertained at the first-ever Hudson Valley VegFest taking place in nearby Poughkeepsie on September 23rd and 24th (Saturday/Sunday) at Gold's Gym.

Conceived by activists, Sande Nosonowitz and Rebecca Moore, after two years of planning, the weekend festival spotlights innovators and influencers making waves on the plant-based culinary front, the arenas of food justice, compassion for animals and environmental sustainability.

"This celebration is for everyone - you'll absolutely be able to take in the energy that will be inspiring, joyous and life-changing.  If you are veg-curious - come explore, enjoy, eat and immerse yourself in the vegan vibe.  If you are already vegan...well, welcome to paradise in Poughkeepsie, “ said Sande Nosonowitz.  

Added Rebecca Moore, “It really is time that the Hudson Valley and Dutchess County get a fun festival featuring delicious food that goes beyond just appealing to our palates - that cares more and wants change that fosters growth, that highlights innovative products and lets inspiring speakers teach, and that brings out the best in all of us."

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Wonderful plant-based food companies, including Mindful Kitchens, which produces a delicious line of seitan-based charcuterie right here in Beacon, are on the lengthy VegFest vendor list. Lagusta’s Luscious, one of the Valley’s innovators with a national following, will be there with their stunning line of artisanal vegan chocolates.  

Other vendors will present beautiful non-toxic health and beauty products and cruelty-free clothing lines. Organizations working hard to forward a more humane and compassionate world shall discuss their important work and outline avenues for involvement and volunteering. 

Cooking and fitness demonstrations will abound, and an impressive lineup of luminaries in the plant-based world, like best-selling author and inspirational vegan guru Victoria Moran, will take the stage. Celebrated vegan pastry chef Fran Costigan, known as “the queen of vegan desserts” will instruct and entice festival goers with her marvelous confections.

The festival dates are September 23-24 from 10am to 6pm both days. The venue is Gold’s Gym at 258 Titusville Rd, Poughkeepsie, NY. Their huge indoor space known as “The Net” covers over 42,000 square feet – ample space for the festival and attendees. Vegfest tickets are $10 per person and children 10 and under enjoy free admission.  For detailed information on the festival, including vendors and speakers, go to www.hvvegfest.org