Vegan Celebration FOR the Turkeys at Farm Sanctuary!

Let the festivities begin! 

Let the festivities begin! 

Several hundred humans (along with dozens of chickens, geese, ducks, goats, sheep, cows, horses, and pigs) gathered at Farm Sanctuary in Acton, CA yesterday to celebrate a compassionate vegan Thanksgiving with the resident turkeys attending as honored guests.

Minerva leading the way! 

Minerva leading the way! 

The Turkey Feeding Ceremony was led by a very happy and excited Minerva who eagerly trotted to center stage as the crowd cheered her on. She quickly started chowing down on pumpkin pie, tossed salad, and fresh cranberries, all of which were served on turkey-height tables. Many of the human guests were amazed at how friendly turkeys are…turkeys actually love being petted and cuddled!

Two-month old Safran, a rescued dairy/veal calf and one of the sanctuary's newest residents.

Two-month old Safran, a rescued dairy/veal calf and one of the sanctuary's newest residents.

Everyone wanted to help feed the turkeys!

Everyone wanted to help feed the turkeys!

People also had a chance to visit the sanctuary’s other animals, including one of their newest residents, a two-month old rescued dairy/veal calf named Safran.

The compassionate vegan feast for the humans followed. It was a very elegant affair (linen tablecloths and napkins, silverware, and wine), featuring Tofurky Roasts, and was prepared and served by One Veg World vegan restaurant of West Covina.

The first speaker of the evening was Gene Baur, President and Co-Founder of Farm Sanctuary. We’ve heard him speak before, and as usual, he was so gracious, genuine, non-judgmental, and inspiring. He was followed by vegan Chef Chloe Coscarelli, (winner of Food Network’s Cupcake Wars against non-vegan competition), who shared great tips on vegan baking and brought in hundreds of vegan chocolate chip cookies to share with everyone! Dr. Melanie Joy, founder of CAAN (Carnism Awareness and Action Network) then gave a very thoughtful talk about carnism. Carnism is an ideology held by many people where they deem it acceptable to eat certain animals (such as chickens or cows), but not others (like dogs or cats), even though eating animals is not necessary for survival for most of the world today.

Henrietta and Martha getting much attention, and loving it! 

Henrietta and Martha getting much attention, and loving it! 

Gable, Martha, and Hepburn mingling with the crowd and posing for pictures.

Gable, Martha, and Hepburn mingling with the crowd and posing for pictures.

The holidays can be a depressing and isolating time for some vegans, whose loved ones often include those who eat animals. But on this day, hundreds of compassionate people (at all different points in the spectrum from carnism to veganism) gathered to spend time with rescued farm animals to get to know them as the unique individuals they are, and then sat down together to enjoy a delectable vegan feast.  Events like these help to make so many of us feel part of this very special movement that is growing larger and stronger every year.

Thanks for reading. Peace and love to all who live.

Susan and Ryan

A Cranberry -Walnut salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette began the people's dinner celebration.

A Cranberry -Walnut salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette began the people's dinner celebration.

The vegan dinner featured Tofurky Roast filled with a Wild Rice and Whole Wheat Bread Crumb Stuffing, Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Rice Pilaf with Caramelized Onions, Sauteed Butternut Squash with Wild Mushrooms, Orange-Cranberry Compote, and Savory Gravy.

The vegan dinner featured Tofurky Roast filled with a Wild Rice and Whole Wheat Bread Crumb Stuffing, Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Rice Pilaf with Caramelized Onions, Sauteed Butternut Squash with Wild Mushrooms, Orange-Cranberry Compote, and Savory Gravy.

Dessert included Pumpkin Spice Rice Pudding and Chef Coscarelli's Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Dessert included Pumpkin Spice Rice Pudding and Chef Coscarelli's Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies.