Volume 77 / Number 50 - May 14 - 20, 2008
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since

Veggie Pride Parade to sprout from meat mecca

By Albert Amateau

“We are the Woodstock of the 21st century,” said Pamela Rice, the enthusiastic organizer of what she claims will be the nation’s first Veggie Pride Parade on Sun., May 18, through the Village from the Gansevoort Meat Market to Washington Square Park.

Veggie enthusiasts dressed as vegetables will step off at noon from Gansevoort St. at Ninth Ave. — near the traditional Meat Market, carnivore central — then wend their way east to Hudson St. and down Bleecker St. to Barrow St., east to W. Fourth St. to LaGuardia Pl. and into the southeast side of the park, which is not under construction.

Vegetarian groups, animal rights activists and local vegetarian restaurants will come together to chant the praises of the environmental, spiritual and health benefits of their lifestyle.

At 2 p.m. prizes will be awarded for costumes, and at 4 p.m. Chris P. Carrot will wed Penelo Pea Pod, both suitably attired. The Cherry Hill Band will provide the music. Speakers will include Karen Davis, president and founder of United Poultry Concerns and author of “Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs,” and Dave Warwak, an educator who was a tenured middle school art teacher until he was fired for teaching veganism to his students.

Yetta G. Kurland, a civil rights lawyer and a candidate for City Council, will also speak, introduced by John Phillips, executive director of the League of Humane Voters. Phillips will introduce any other public official who wants to speak at the event.

Rice, a resident of Mulberry St. for the past 21 years and a vegetarian for 17 years, began working on the idea about 11 months ago.

“We have a group of about 40 people who volunteered off and on,” she said. “Roberta Schiff has been giving monthly dinners in her apartment for the volunteers from the beginning,” said Rice.

“We chose Greenwich Village for the parade because it’s where progressive ideas have come from for the past hundred years,” she said. “This [vegetarianism] is the progressive idea of the 21st century.

“This is really the first parade of its kind in America,” she added, noting however that there has been an annual vegetarian parade in Paris since 2001.

For more information online, visit http://www.veggieprideparade.org/.

Chris P. Carrot, left, and Penelo Pea Pod will wed at the Veggie Pride Parade.

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