Record numbers of people are expected to attend Rehoboth Beach VegFest this year, the annual festival celebrating healthy, sustainable, and compassionate living, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, June 13, at Epworth United Methodist Church in Rehoboth Beach.
The festival is a fun-filled event that encourages people to discover for themselves the delicious tastes and many benefits of plant-based eating. Over 70 organizations and restaurants will be exhibiting at the festival, including local and regional businesses, nonprofits from The Humane League to Beebe Healthcare, and over 21 food sellers. Rehoboth Beach VegFest also features inspiring speakers, tastings, kids' activities, cooking demonstrations, a yoga village, healthy-eating tent, live music and an expansive array of veg-friendly food.
"We have never seen as much excitement and interest in VegFest as this year," says Patricia Haddock, president and co-founder. "We have food sellers, exhibitors and attendees coming from up and down the East Coast to be part of VegFest."
A full slate of kids' activities is taking place all day long, under the pavilion at the church, including kids' yoga with Holly Piper-Smith of Sussex Family YMCA; You Can Eat a Rainbow, with Lewes Montessori School; Cooking Fresh with Sprouting Chefs; arts and crafts with Rehoboth Art League; and Planting Seeds for Life, with East Coast Garden Center. There will also be a kids' inflatable bounce thanks to special sponsor Kids Cottage.
Among the speakers will be Dr. Milton Mills, presenting "The Plant-Based Path to Health," Bruce Friedrich of Farm Sanctuary on "Eating with Conscience" and Victoria Moran of Main Street Vegan on "The Hows and Whys and Joys of Vegan Living."
Not just for vegetarians and vegans, Rehoboth Beach VegFest is a community-wide event that offers something for everyone. "We especially want to invite those who are 'veg-curious,'" says Haddock. "VegFest is a cool way to sample some of the amazing food, learn some simple tips for make-at-home meals, and maybe just ease into it a little."
Lori Beinhauer, staff associate at Good Earth Market in Rehoboth and vegan home chef, will be presenting on just that. Her cooking demo will focus on quick, meat-free meals that people can easily make at home, including vegan meatloaf and her famous chicken-free chicken salad.
Rehoboth Beach VegFest is family-friendly, pet-friendly, bike-friendly, and welcoming to all. Admission is free; there is plenty of free parking, and throughout the event visitors can ride the Jolly Trolley to and from VegFest at no charge. Hop-on locations are near the bandstand, and at the convention center in downtown Rehoboth. The first Jolley Trolley pickup will be at 10:30 a.m. in Rehoboth, and the last pickup will be at Epworth at 5 p.m.
Throughout VegFest weekend, sponsor Starbucks Coffee of Rehoboth Beach will be offering free of charge soy and coconut options for all beverages purchased to those who mention VegFest.
Organizers thank their partners and top sponsors including Jenn Harpel of Morgan Stanley, The Atlantic Sands Hotel and Conference Center, CAMP Rehoboth, Cape Gazette, Delmarva Public Radio, Made Ya Look!, Rehoboth Beach Farmers Market, Rehoboth Beach Film Society, VegFund and Sussex Family YMCA.
Additional activities take place all weekend long. "It's such a fantastic event," says Haddock. "Rehoboth VegFest really does have something for everyone." For more information and a full schedule of events, go to www.RehobothVegFest.org.