Veggie Pride Parade NYC, 2009, bigger and better The First Veggie Pride Parade in America took place in Greenwich Village, New York City, in May 2008. A repeat performance -- and then some -- took place on Sunday, May 17, 2009.
Just as last year, the parade launched from the Olde Meat District. -->Then, after another exhilarating march, the parade culminated in Union Square Park (northern end) where a festival of music, speakers, free vegan food, and exhibitors took place.
Again, just as last year, parade participants wore costumes and carried sign boards announcing their pride in their vegetarian lifestyle. Local restaurants and veggie and veg-friendly groups represented themselves with banners.
Marchers came from all persuasions of the vegetarian movement: There were animal-rights activists, environmentalists, spiritualists, raw enthusiasts, and people just concerned with their health. But on May 17, 2009, all came together with one voice, one expression, of veggie pride.
At about 2 p.m. on stage, at the post-parade rally, the winners of a costume and poster-slogan contest were named.
Just as last year, Penelo Pea Pod (the 7-foot-tall human pea pod and long-time mascot of parade sponsor VivaVegie Society), led the parade with PeTA's Chris P. Carrot.
For a Veggie Pride Parade, there could be as many goals as there are vegans. Just the same, the organizers of the event feel the need to state their aspirations for the parade, ones that can be shared by all.
To set a positive example by standing proud and standing up for the vegan lifestyle
To show our true love of animals, which must include farmed animals
To celebrate our healthy diet
To educate about the issues surrounding today's cruel, unsustainable, and exploitative meat-, egg-, and dairy-production systems
To encourage meat eaters—through advocacy and example—to join us in our compassionate way of living
Paul Shapiro at the Veggie Pride Parade talks of Smithfield's Swine Flu Virus - starts at 9:30 seconds in
The Veggie Pride Parade Program guide is now posted to the Veggie Pride Parade Web site. Find a schedule of events, a list of speakers, a list of exhibitors, a list of prize donor for the costume contest, an essay by vegan historian Rynn Berry, and, of course, ads from vegan organizations and businesses from all over the region. Click HERE to go to where you can download a PDF of the entire guide.