Saturday, September 17, 2011

Vida Vegan Con - Days One and Two

Momma Veg and I were very fortunate to attend the Vida Vegan Conference in August in Portland. I can’t believe it took me this long to blog about it. I have been busy getting ready for another trip but to be honest I have been procrastinating for no good reason. 


Friday, Aug 26th

We arrived in Portland around lunch time on Friday. Right after depositing the luggage at our hotel we jumped on the Max to go eat at Backspace. Their veggie club is one of the best sandwiches I have ever had. Thank goodness we decided to share because the sandwich was huge. Plus, it left room to eat the awesome vegan tomato soup. We were so hungry that I forgot to take a photo. Next we decided to check out Whole Foods and buy a few snacks. Before we knew it, it was time to register so we hopped on the street car to grab our bag of swag. It was awesome but a little heavy so we took it back to the hotel, rested up a little then headed to Portobello for dinner. We rode the bus so we ended up getting to Portobello before it opened but it didn’t take long for a line to form behind us. Thank goodness we got there early because we didn’t make a reservation and we just barely got a table. Momma Veg got the amazing Gnocchi and I got the Beet Burger. We ate half then traded so we could both sample the yummy food.  Again we forgot to take a photo. Then it was time to go back to University Place to eat some cupcakes. The ballroom was extremely warm and we were exhausted from traveling so after looking around at the exhibitors we quickly ate a cupcake and decided to head back to the hotel room for the night.

*Note: To see the awesome food from Portobello please visit Vegan Favorites.  They have a great blog!

Backspace = greatness
Portobello = more greatness
VVC Bag O’ Swag & Sweetpea cupcakes = extreme greatness


Saturday, Aug 27th

Our schedule for the day:

10:00am - 11:15am -      Willamette Falls: Travel Panel
11:20am - 12:15pm -      Astoria: Nutrition Panel
12:20pm - 1:20pm -        Astoria: The Accidental Journalist
1:30pm - 2:30pm -          LUNCH - Northwest Picnic
2:35pm - 3:35pm -          Coos Bay: Positive Blogging
3:40pm - 4:45pm -          Willamette Falls: Planting Seeds of Compassion

We started off breakfast meeting the extremely nice folks of vegansaurus and a few other gals that I really wish I had wrote down their names and blogs. I really don’t know what I was thinking. Breakfast was good. The conversation was better. Ms. Laura Beck did an awesome opening welcome speech.


First up was the Travel Panel, which ended up being one of my favorite panels. Before the panel started we chatted with the very nice Christa (Veggin out with Christa) and her sweet mom. All the speakers were great. I loved that Samantha Cohen of SuperVegan mentioned Spiral Diner here in Dallas as one of her favorite restaurants. I agree with her that their cashew cheese is amazing.

I think the travel panel must have gone a little long because by the time we got to the next one (Nutrition) it was already starting and was full. The awesome Isa gave up her seat for my mom so I just ended up sitting in the floor next to her chair. The panel was good but I think I would have had a better time in a chair or standing so I could have seen each person while they were talking instead of guessing who was actually speaking. Isa brought up cooking with oil and how every time she puts oil in a recipe people are getting  on to her. The panel said it was ok and healthy to cook with oil. I personally don’t like to use oil very often. I think there are a bunch of recipes that don’t need it. For example, one of my favorite dishes is a mac and cheese dish I make. The oil seems to be in the recipe only to make it oily like the popular cow’s milk  mac and cheese. I’m not a fan of the greasy taste and feel of some foods so I don’t use it. I don’t enjoy pasta or veggies cooked in oil because most people use way too much.

I have to admit that this panel was a blur to me. There was a little bit of a sound issue so I didn’t hear what some of the panelists were saying. I do appreciate the handout from class with the proper spelling of some popularly misspelled and misused words because I can guarantee you I am one of the folks who need it. I probably need to memorize it.

Lunch was “Northwest Picnic” which included a large piece of bbq tempeh, Gardein tenders, potato salad, kale salad hummus and much more.  We had lunch with the Vegansaurus girls, Christy Morgan (The Blissful Chef, who I was happy to meet since she lives is the same city), Novel Eats, and a few other gals.  



It was nice see Christa on the panel after chatting with her and her mom at the Travel panel. I have to say this was a great group of speakers. You could tell why they were chosen for the positive blogging session just by seeing them speak. Just amazing, positive, cheerful people. You couldn’t help but smile. (And I want Leigh-Chantelle Koch’s fashion sense. How cute were her outfits!)


Another one of my favorite panels. Colleen is such an inspiration. She gives such a great point of view for the cause. You are never going to be able to convince people to eat vegan if you are too forceful. If you show compassion and just give them the information they will come towards your point of view on their own.


The Gala was great fun. We had some awesome food and some great conversation but I have to admit that my favorite thing of the evening (besides seeing Robert Cheeke get his dance on) were the Flip Books. Just to think that I almost left without doing it. Momma Veg and I made a cute one. It is such a great memento. I smile every time I look at it. :)


Gala / Flip books = awesome
Seeing Colleen Patrick Goudreau = more awesome
Eating a vegan breakfast, lunch, & dinner with 200 other vegans = extreme awesomeness

No comments:

Post a Comment