Vegan culture and community have grown rapidly in the last few years. Not long ago, most people had never heard the word vegan. Vegans – people who live compassionately by not eating or wearing animals or products that come from animals – were basically invisible. We did much of our shopping in tiny health food co-ops, and our dining in a few carefully selected restaurants.
Now there are dozens of products with the word vegan gracing the fronts of the packaging in most supermarkets, and vegan options abound in dining establishments all over the place. Celebrities describe how their vegan diets give them their sexy bodies or protect them from heart disease, and the small but burgeoning vegan culture is moving from the fringes to middle America.
Nowhere is this more apparent than in Chicago. Famous as the “hog butcher to the world”, Chicago boasts at least 18 exclusively vegan restaurants (and dozens more vegan-friendly ones), several local vegan food companies, and a rapidly growing community of herbivores.
Chicago VeganMania is a celebration of this dynamic new community. We bring together the vegan restaurants and food companies, leaders and entrepreneurs, doctors and chefs, businesses and organizations, singers and dancers, and we put them in one big place to show them all off to the world.
You certainly don’t have to be vegan to attend or enjoy Chicago VeganMania. You don’t even have to understand or care why people would adopt a vegan lifestyle. We just want you to have fun. Chicago VeganMania is basically a big friendly party, a festival where you can eat wonderful food, enjoy great music and lively entertainment, and have an opportunity to discover unique vegan products and learn the secrets of vegan chefs. There are even places where you can learn about the whys and hows of veganism is you’re so inclined.
Our first five celebrations exceeded everyone’s expectations, and this fall we’ll be back, bigger than ever. So stop by and prepare yourself for an exciting and wonderful day.
Our Vision, Mission and Values
Our Vision is to help create a world based on compassion, peace, and respect for all living things, where people live in radiant good health and have the full capacity to be active participants in all matters of government and commerce as well as their own livelihood, a world where everyone has a sincere appreciation for the interconnectedness of the entire web of life.
The Mission of Chicago VeganMania is to celebrate, unite, promote, and strengthen the diverse vegan culture, economy, and community of Chicago and beyond. We provide a platform and audience for vegan businesses, organizations, groups, and individuals through a series of innovative programs and events culminating in an exciting, inspirational, and fun annual weekend festival.
We eschew the killing, injuring, enslavement, or exploitation of all people and all sentient creatures. The core human values of justice, equality, peace, freedom, and goodwill are consistent with and paramount to these vegan values, and we believe that all aggression and exploitation, even if committed by those who purport to hold our own standards, is not to be excused or tolerated.
We value the enterprise of those who choose to expand the vegan culture, economy, and community by launching new businesses, products, services, ideas, groups, and other forms of expression, and we are committed to helping them all expand their voices, their audiences, and their markets by offering them the platform and tools to achieve their goals.
We acknowledge and value the larger community, and we recognize that each of us is on our own path. We attempt to treat everyone’s path with respect and welcome while adhering to our core values. We invite everyone into our events, including those whose values are contrary to our own. We present our culture, economy and community in the spirit of sharing, with goodwill toward all, and respect for each person’s decision to embrace our values or not. Our position is above judgment, cajoling, ridicule, and bitter argument.