JANUARY 30, 2009 9:00 PM

Two of the aspects I appreciated the most about Wake Up Weekend was the community and the food. I was reminded how isolated and defensive I had become over the past year without constant community contact. The discussions after speakers and film showings as well as over the potluck and buffets helped recharge my brain for the coming year. Here are a few photos to remember the event. In fitting with tradition, I entirely forgot to take photos on Friday night, so here are some from Saturday's events:

vegan brunch
One of the plates from the vegan buffet at Brickroad Pizza Company Saturday morning.

Ben DeVries - Animal Advocacy and Religion
The first speaker of the afternoon - Ben DeVries from Not One Sparrow.

Michelle Loyd-Paige - Reflections of a Sista Vegan
Followed by Michelle Loyd-Paige's narrative entitled "Reflections of a Sista Vegan."

Nekeisha Alexis-Baker - Speciesism, Sexism, and Racism: The Intertwining Oppressions
As well as talk by Nekeisha Alexis-Baker's talk on speciesism, sexism, and racism.

table o' cornbreadso many good chilis
Cornbread baked by the Oven Mitt Bakery and some chilis mixed together from the Vegan Chili Cookoff!

Clearly we're still all recovering from the near-Thanksgiving-like food coma and still chewing on the thoughts presented by speakers, panel discussions, and films but we will resume more frequent posting shortly. Thanks to all sponsors, groups, individuals and attendees who made last weekend a success!

Comments (2)

JANUARY 27, 2009 5:26 PM

Watch CBS Videos Online
Heart Attack Grill Disgusting on All Fronts, But Truthful At Least
Is honesty still a laudable trait when what you're being honest about is that you're a sexist, speciesist idiot with a devil-may-care attitude toward your own health and the health of others? At Heart Attack Grill, the slogan is "A Taste Worth Dying For!" and the burgers are named the single, double, triple, and quadruple "bypass". The website brags that "Flatliner Fries" are "deep fried in pure lard," and Lucky Strike filterless cigarettes are sold at the counter. There's even a "kill a friend" marketing program that awards free meals to people who send links to the website to unsuspecting associates. Too bad willing human beings aren't the only victims of this deplorable establishment.

JANUARY 22, 2009 7:12 PM

Better Safe Than Sorry: Please, No Peanut Ingredients in Potluck/Cook-Off Foods
Due to the nationwide salmonella outbreak that has been linked to peanuts, we are declaring Wake Up Weekend 2009 a peanut- and peanut-ingredient-free event. While it is disappointing to have to rule out so many delicious recipes in one fell swoop, I suspect we'll all be happier without the specter of a mass outbreak looming over our festivities. Apologies to Jimmy Carter, as well as to those of you who may have been planning a peanut-based contribution to our events. Luckily, the peanut-free options for tasty vegan vittles are practically limitless! Let's stay on the safe side and exploit some of those!

JANUARY 21, 2009 9:05 PM

It's Not Too Late! Register Your Chili Now!
The Wake Up Weekend 2009 competition is heating up, but with just nine registrants so far, we're still a full five chilis shy of the high bar of fourteen contestants set back in 2007. We'd love to SMASH that record this year, and we know you've got it in you.

The Details
The showdown begins at 7 pm sharp on Saturday, January 24th, 2009 at the gallery at 106 South Division, Grand Rapids, MI. If you have a crockpot or some alternate means of keeping your chili warm throughout the competition, we encourage you to use it. Please arrive no later than 6:40 so that we can have your chili ready to serve promptly at 7:00 pm.

Want in?
Please send your name, contact number, e-mail, recipe name* and recipe description** (optional) to wakeupweekend@gmail.com.

*By "Recipe Name," we simply mean the banner under which your chili will march into battle, e.g., "Vic's Veg Volcano" or "Torrid Thai Surprise."

**Like a fine wine, a well-crafted vegan chili is a complex affair. Incarnate for us the essence of your masterpiece. Particularly creative, humorous, or otherwise noteworthy descriptions may be published on ExtraVEGANza! to motivate others to compete and to attend (descriptions will be published anonymously in order to preserve the fairness of the competition). Look for a new post early on Friday with a rundown of the highlights!

Can't Contribute a Chili?
That's okay! There are plenty of other less intensive ways to participate. We'll need people to bring soft drinks, chips and dips, and other finger foods to supplement the chilis, as well as extra bowls, plates, cups and utensils to share with those who forget to bring their own. REMEMBER: To keep the Wake Up Weekend free of charge and still feed the masses, we need to count on a little help from our friends. If you can help in any of these ways, please drop a line to wakeupweekend@gmail.com.

JANUARY 12, 2009 6:52 PM

*All events are free and open to the public (excluding the all-you-can-eat Saturday brunch, which is just $10.00 per person at the door). Donations to defray costs are cheerfully accepted. Questions? Write to wakeupweekend@gmail.com.

Our annual two-day celebration of animal-friendly food, art, education, and advocacy brought to you by Animals & Society Institute, Brick Road Pizza Company, ExtraVEGANza!, G-Rad, Not One Sparrow, Oven Mitt Bakery, and Students for Compassionate Living.

2:30 pm--Animal Advocacy: What, Why, Who, and How?
Commons Annex Lecture Hall, Calvin College

Stay on the cutting edge of the movement by learning from the people who are making it happen. From rights to welfare, from religion to politics, from the laws of the heart to the laws of the land, from grassroots to goliath, our nationally recognized panelists know the score. Join us for this workshop and you will too!

Harold Brown (President, Farm Kind, Hector, NY)
Ben DeVries (Founder, Not One Sparrow, Kenosha, WI)
Adam Durand (Campaign Director, Animal Rights International, Rochester, NY)
Bee Friedlander (Managing Director, Animals and Society Institute, Ann Arbor, MI)
Nathan Runkle (Executive Director, Mercy for Animals, Columbus, OH and Chicago, IL)

5:30 pm--"Compassionate Comestibles" Vegan Potluck*
Commons Annex Lecture Hall, Calvin College
*Hosted by Students for Compassionate Living

At an event where omnivores, vegetarians, and vegans are coming together in fellowship, a vegan bill of fare insures that everyone can enjoy what's on the menu! What's your favorite vegan recipe? Bring a dish to share and find out where others come down on this appetizing question! Need a few ideas? Vegan Yum Yum and Post Punk Kitchen never disappoint.

***Please help us to reduce waste and carbon emissions by bringing your own washable or recyclable dinnerware*** and perhaps an extra setting or two for our out-of-town guests and last-minute participants; a limited number of recyclables will be on hand for those without table service.

7:30 pm--Film Festival
Bytwerk Video Theater, DeVos Communications Center, Calvin College
Eating Mercifully
Fowl Play (A Film By Adam Durand)

Two great films by two great directors, one of whom--Adam Durand--will be on hand to introduce his work and take questions after the screening. Did you know that the idea for "Fowl Play" was hatched at Wake Up Weekend 2007 and that the original first-cut of the film was edited here in Grand Rapids for our sneak preview screening at Wake Up Weekend 2008? Now in 2009, the final version has been nominated for Best Documentary in a national film festival in Hollywood, but YOU get to see it first right here in Grand Rapids. Look for special mention of Wake Up Weekend in the credits!

11:00 am--Vegan Brunch at Brick Road Pizza
Tofu scramble, french toast sticks, vegan fried chikn, and all your favorite specialty pizzas and salads are on the menu at this $10.00 all-you-can-eat vegan juggernaut that Chef Ryan promises will be a day to remember! Whether you're a Wake-up-Weekender or just a hungry Grand Rapidian, come on out! Everyone is welcome!

1:30--Spotlight Session: Animal Advocacy and Religion
(106), 106 S. Division, Grand Rapids
"Not One Sparrow is Forgotten: A Simply Christian Animal Advocacy"
Ben DeVries (Founder, Not One Sparrow)

3:00 pm--Panel: Animal Exploitation and Questions of Race and Gender
(106), 106 S. Division, Grand Rapids

"Thinking and Eating at the Same Time: Reflections of a Sista Vegan"
Michelle Loyd-Paige (Dean for Multicultural Affairs, Calvin College)

"Speciesism, Sexism, and Racism: The Intertwining Oppressions"
Nekeisha Alexis-Baker (Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminary; Co-Founder, Jesus Radicals)

7:00 pm--Vegan Chili Cook-Off and Print Sale Benefit
(106), 106 S. Division, Grand Rapids
You know the drill on this one: Best. Vegan. Chili. Ever. (Made by YOU, if you've got the guts to compete, anyway.) Add vegan cornbread lovingly prepared by Oven Mitt Bakery, and a print sale that puts the artwork of Wake Up Weekend within everyone's reach, and you simply can't say no! Come on out and help us raise a few dollars for our participating animal charities, and we can show the world that compassion is recession-proof!

*If you plan to enter a chili into competition, please send an e-mail to wakeupweekend@gmail.com ASAP to request a registration form. Last year, we were a bit light on chili (and a bit heavy on chili-eaters), so let's anticipate another big turnout and get as many of you to put your culinary prowess on display as possible!

See you at Wake Up Weekend 2009!

Comments (1)

JANUARY 4, 2009 11:35 PM

Seitan Pepperoni and Mushroom
Seitan Pepperoni and Mushroom
Brick Road Vegan Philly Cheeze
Philly 'Steak' Sandwich
Tomato and Zucchini With Garlic Base
Tomato and Zucchini with Garlic Sauce
Brick Road Vegan Club
Vegan Club Sandwich

JANUARY 4, 2009 11:14 PM

Unlikely Chums Presage the Peaceable Kingdom
Not since Owen and Mzee has there been a more winsome animal odd couple! Have your Kleenex at the ready, because this one will moisten your eyes.

Comments (1)

JANUARY 3, 2009 7:25 PM

Mark Your Calendars: January 23-24, 2009 in Grand Rapids, MI
It is something of a tradition here at extraVEGANza! to go into a brief period of hibernation over the holidays and then return with a "COCK-A-DOODLE-DOO!" in the new year to promote our annual Wake Up Weekend festivities. Remember how much fun you had in 2007 and 2008? You attended workshops and lectures, you wore your extraVEGANza! pride on your sleeve, you prepared and ate award-winning vegan chili, and you purchased artwork by a variety of fantastic national and regional artists, all for the worthy cause of compassion for animals!

Lucky for you, Wake Up Weekend 2009 is right around the corner, featuring yet another full slate of A-list speakers and events to kick off a new year of animal-friendly living in Grand Rapids and beyond! As ever, we'll be bringing some of the movement's most exciting people to our fair city and rallying ya'll to fire up your vegan chili-making skills. We've got a few innovations in store as well, including a print sale that will make Wake Up Weekend artwork more affordable for everyone, a $10.00 all-you-can-eat vegan brunch buffet at Brick Road Pizza, and additional sessions on cutting-edge topics including Animal Advocacy and Religion, and Compassionate Eating and Race Awareness. Stay tuned for the official schedule TBA in just a few days!

Comments (2)

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