I <3 TLV


I noticed a sign outside Gluuteny today advertising vegan cupcakes!!! It's about time! I didn't get one so I can't comment on the taste, but gluten-free vegan cupcakes in Squirrel Hill is very exciting! Hopefully this will be the first of many egg-free baked goods (everything is already dairy-free).
Weapon of Non-Violence
  • hopita

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED to pass out Vegan Holiday Recipes flyers!

Volunteers Needed…
To pass out Vegan Holiday Recipes flyers!

As winter approaches and the holidays near, it is once again time to speak out for the animals who suffer and die as a result of our holiday traditions. One of the tools we offer to help you speak up for turkeys, and all animals who are slaughtered for the holiday dinner table, is our great little one-page flyer with six vegan versions of traditional holiday recipes. Our Vegan Holiday Recipes flyer also has facts in the sidebar about turkeys, factory farming, and veganism.

We have found that people are very willing to take free recipes, and this flyer works well because it not only provides vegan recipes for the holidays, but it also gets the facts about how animals suffer on factory farms into people’s hands.

We are looking for volunteers to pass out flyers on your own or with friends this holiday season! (Please see below for outreach ideas.)

If you are able to print your own flyers, please do so! It will save us funds. A printable PDF version of the flyer is located at: http://afa-online.org/docs/veganholidayrecipes.pdf

If you can commit to passing out at least 50 flyers, please reply with the requested information.

Please note that we will only mail flyers within the U.S.

Non-U.S. activists can still print flyers from the PDF link to distribute!

If you would like us to mail you flyers to pass out, please email mail@afa-online.org with:

- Your full name and address (in this format, please):
First Last
City State Zip
- Your plans for distribution?
- How many flyers would you like?: 50, 150, 250, or more*
*If you have an event planned, or a group of volunteers, we can send more than 250. Please give us details on your planned outreach and please let us know if you can cover any of the printing and shipping costs.

Some ideas for passing out flyers:
- Pass out flyers in front of a grocery store. Stores like Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and co-ops are good because they already have many of the vegan items and ingredients, but any store will do.
- Leaflet at your local college or high school campus, or on the main street near your college.
- Distribute flyers to your friends and family.
- Include the Vegan Holiday Recipes with your holiday cards.

Free Distribution Idea: Add the PDF link to your Facebook and MySpace and send it out in a Twitter Tweet. You can also send the link to friends and family via email.
For PDFs of all our flyers and many other great pieces of literature, please visit: http://afa-online.org/literature.html

Thank you for taking the time to speak out for the animals this holiday season!

Vegan Bazaar Tomorrow!

100% vegetarian food, non-alcoholic drinks, products, healthy services and entertainment for the whole family!

ALL ARE WELCOME! Vegans, vegetarians, and non-vegetarians are all welcome.

(Scroll down to find vendor and entertainment info.)

All ages.
$5 admission.
Please bring extra cash to make purchases.
Children 10 and under get in free.

Sat. July 24
1-6 p.m.

Allegheny Unitarian Universalist Church
416 W. North Ave. at Resaca Place
Pittsburgh, PA 15212



The Juice Box Cafe (free samples! mock tuna salad and lemonade),
Love Street Living Foods (free samples! raw chocolate, nuts and more),
The Vegan Goddess (vegan goodies),
Abay Ethiopian,
Vegan lasagna made with Daiya cheese,
and more!


Team Stillwagon brings you virgin mimosas, fancy lemonade and more!


Bellydance by Tribe of Azhar (student dance troupe),
Hoop dance by Apex and Aureole,
Acoustic guitar and live drumming by Rich Ermlick,
Magical face painting by Pixie the Painter,
Henna Body Art by Mary Carroll,
Massage Therapy by Ron Smart,
Dance Party with DJ Kevin James (world & electronic music)

Voices for Animals of Western PA,
Heal from Pet Loss


help an out-of-towner out!

Hey guys! I don't live here, but i'll be in pgh for a few days this weekend dealing with some family stuff, and was wondering what some of your favorite restaurants were that i could easily get to from the mount lebanon area? Preferably something with non-veg options as i'm the only one in my family who is vegan. I read through some of the memories, but i'm not too good with the area, and don't have too much of a concept of how long it takes to travel x distance.

i'll have a car, but since i'll be with my family and things will be hectic, i don't want to drag them around too much. I'm really having a hard time grasping what is conveniently close and what is too far...would east liberty or squirrel hill (both look to have some good options) be a super far drive from mt. lebanon? Google says no, but living in los angeles, i know that ~9 miles doesnt necessarily mean close haha...Any help as to where to go/where to look would be seriously appreciated!

Thank you so much!

Daiya cheese!


I forgot to post this a few days back, but I have recently found out that Whole Foods now carries Daiya Cheese. This stuff is seriously amazing; it even gets stringy! I don't think that it's actually kept out in the usual vegan cheese section, instead, you have to ask for it behind the sandwich counter, as though for some illicit good. It's priced at $7.99 per pound, and comes pre grated. We bought some last Friday and had a pizza party!

I <3 TLV

(no subject)

Nov. 21st & 22nd, Saturday & Sunday 1-5 PM, DLCC (Penn & 10th)

Since we sent our alert last about the Commerford Kid’s Fun Fair and Traveling Zoo coming to the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on November 21st and 22nd, we have been working very hard to get this event cancelled. Despite daily attempts to communicate with the Convention Center about this issue, the DLCC has failed to respond to VFA about the cancellation of this event. In addition, we placed informational literature in the places where promotional tickets were available, posted our alert on various social networking sites and sent alerts out to other local and national animal advocacy organizations, sent emails to the General Manager of the DLCC, and convinced several members of the public not to attend the event. When we discovered that the Commerford Zoo depends on the promotion of free children’s tickets that are distributed everywhere throughout the city, including all the schools(!), for event attendance, we immediately contacted the Pittsburgh Public School Board, local YMCAs, local Boys & Girls Clubs, and other local community centers to alert them about Commerford’s abusive record and the danger the event poses to children and their families.
Despite the lack of cancellation of this event, things are starting to heat up as this issue has now reached other animal advocacy groups and has gone national! The Sports & Exhibition Authority of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, which owns the DLCC, is also now being contacted. This is an integral step in our Empty Cages animals in entertainment campaign because the Sports & Exhibition Authority also owns the new coming arena, the Consol Energy Center, which you may remember was the focus of our Ringling Bros. protest in the beginning of the month.
Because the Commerford Traveling Zoo has not been cancelled and is still making its scheduled trip to Pittsburgh , we need to be there to unwelcome them to our city. VFA volunteers will be protesting outside the David Lawrence Convention Center on both days of the event, Saturday and Sunday, in various shifts from 1-5 PM. Please be there if you can! We realize because of the impromptu nature of this protest your schedules may be already busy for these days. However, please show up for as long as you are able to - your presence is needed to not only resist this event but all other forms of animal entertainment events throughout the city.
We will meet on Penn Avenue behind the Convention Center on the block of Penn & 10th Street . Directions to the Convention Center and parking information can be found here: http://www.pittsburghcc.com/cc/directions.html
This protest is going to be BYOS (Bring Your Own Sign)! We will have leaflets available to pass out but if you are able to make your own sign, please do. If you are not able to, please don’t let that stop you from coming! Your presence is all that is needed. If you’re stuck on sign ideas, here are a few suggestions:
Abolish Animal Acts in Pittsburgh
Commerford Abuses Animals
Traveling Zoo of Misery
Hospital Visits for the Whole Family!
Step Right Up! Take a Gamble on Your Family’s Safety!
Warning: Unsafe Event Ahead
We will not end this issue with this protest. Animal acts and exhibits need to be banned at the David Lawrence Convention Center so that there are no future appalling events like this coming there ever again. Please contact Debbie Smucker, Director of Sales & Marketing of the David Lawrence Convention Center , and demand a ban on future exotic animal exhibits and shows at the Convention Center:
Debbie Smucker, Director of Sales and Marketing
David L. Lawrence Convention Center
1000 Fort Duquesne Boulevard
Pittsburgh , PA 15222
Phone: 412-325-6174
Fax: 412-325-6104
Email: dsmucker@pittsburghcc.com
And since Debbie Smucker doesn’t answer her phone, please contact the Sports & Exhibition Authority of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County as well, and demand the same:
Mary Conturo, Executive Director
Sports & Exhibition Authority
Regional Enterprise Tower
425 Sixth Ave., Ste. 2750
Pittsburgh , PA 15219
Phone: 412-393-0200
Fax: 412-393-7104


Voices for Animals of Western Pennsylvania

Post Office Box 2751

Pittsburgh , PA 15230






CoCo's Cupcake Café - review.


Today, I finally managed to visit CoCo's Cupcake Café in Shadyside. I've ridden past it a couple of times, and have attempted to visit once before on a Monday, only to find it was closed. I'd had a look at the menu online and had thought I was going to get Monday's special, a vegan chocolate coconut cupcake, but I seemed to miss the opening hours which told me that it wasn't actually open on Mondays. Never mind; today when I explained my previous failed attempted visit to the guy working there, he apologised for the confusion and added an extra free cupcake to my order! I didn't catch his name, but he was extremely friendly and chatty, and explained that he's an architect and designed the minimalist interior himself. Whilst I liked the décor, I feel like the atmosphere of the café would have benefited from some sort of background music, as without it, it was a bit too minimalistic for my liking.

CoCo's gets extra points for vegan-friendliness because every day, the standard vegan red velvet cupcake is accompanied by a rotating daily extra flavour. Tuesday's vegan option is green tea, which is what I ordered as the red velvet had sold out. The cake itself was moist and tasty, however in comparison to Dozen's chocolate-vanilla cupcake, it loses in the size department. Clearly this wasn't too much of an issue for me as I had two to devour, and I very much enjoyed them, though I would have preferred a slightly higher ratio of cake to frosting. I've never had a green tea cupcake before so I wasn't sure what to expect, but the flavour was very delicate and subtle. Their vegan options all sound very appealing and I like that the daily specials are all linked by a theme. The cupcakes were also reasonably priced at $2.50 each, and I will certainly be going back again to try out some more. I'm particularly intrigued by the red velvet cupcake as I'm yet to find one that I'm impressed by; we'll see how theirs fares next time!

Click here for directions to CoCo's Cupcake Café.


Craft fair tomorrow!

Just a little (late) reminder about the craft fair tomorrow at the former Emma Kaufmann Clinic in Polish Hill, Pittsburgh. Along with other craft stalls, I'll be there selling 100% vegan baked goods, including:


Pumpkin cinnamon buns,
Vanilla cupcakes with vanilla frosting,
Vanilla cupcakes with chocolate frosting,
Chocolate cupcakes with vanilla frosting,
Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting,
Pumpkin whoopie pies,
Peanut butter thumbprint cookies with grape jelly,
Mexican hot chocolate orange cookies.

It'll be going on from 10am until 4pm, and the address is 3028 Brereton St. It'll be the first time I've been there, and be lovely to see you there too!

The craft fair seems to have been canceled. I turned up this morning, but the guy told me that only two people turned up last week, and no vendors(!). However, Oh Yeah! is now selling a selection of everything I baked today, so please head down there if you'd like to try them and they might stock vegan baked goods more regularly!
I <3 TLV

(no subject)

Penguins Only at New Arena!
Wear Your Pens Gear and Protest Ringling With VFA!

Protest: Saturday, November 7th 5:30-7:00 PM, Mellon Arena

 * * *Please Forward Widely * * *

Tis' the season! In one week Ringling Brothers & Barnum and Bailey Circus will be returning to Pittsburgh , where VFA will be continuing our ongoing circus campaign efforts by protesting Ringling’s show outside the arena. But before you think this is another old hat circus protest held annually by VFA, this year’s protest presents a different twist…
With the approaching demolition of Pittsburgh ’s Mellon Arena, this will be Ringling’s last show at the igloo. Wouldn’t it be nice if this was their final farewell to Pittsburgh altogether? With everyone’s efforts, we just might be able to make this a reality! The new arena brings a new start and we feel that our Stanley Cup-winning Penguins should be the only performing animals entertaining visitors at the new arena.
That’s why at this year’s Ringling protest, we are asking everyone to come decked out in their Penguins gear where we will send the message that circus animal abuse is not welcome at any venue, and that Penguins fans and animal advocates alike want Crosby , not cruelty, at the new arena. (Tip: Goodwill is a great place for Pens-themed items, and if you're still coming up short, break out anything black and gold n'at!)

Saturday night’s performance is likely to have the highest attendance, which is why our protest will be on Saturday, November 7th from 5:30-7:00 pm. Please come out and show your resistance to Ringling’s animal abuse and exploitation. The more people who attend the protest, the stronger we appear as a force for Ringling to deal with, so it's important as many people turn out for the protest as possible. The protest will be outside Gate 1, the main ticket entrance of the Mellon Arena.
We will have all the signs, leaflets, and materials. Please be there if you can - and bring friends if possible!
For driving directions to the Mellon Arena, see http://mellonarena.com/site12.php
The Mellon Arena’s address is 66 Mario Lemieux Place , Pittsburgh , PA 15219 .
If you are taking the bus, just about any bus that goes downtown will take you to the arena, such as the 71A, 71C, 71D, 500, 61A, 61B, 61C, and the 81A, B, and C stop on Centre Avenue at the Mellon Arena.
We will be protesting at the Saturday night show, but Ringling has shows all week starting from Wednesday November 4th till Sunday the 8th. If you're interested in leafleting outside any of these shows, and let us know in advance, we may be able to arrange to get you literature. We are also attaching the literature to this alert in case you come across some free printing. Here are the times for Ringling's shows:
Wednesday November 4th – 7pm
Thursday November 5th – 10:30am and 7pm
Friday November 6th – 7pm
Saturday November 7th – 11am, 3pm, (and our protest) 5:30 - 7pm
Sunday November 8th – 1pm and 5pm
Ringling Verdict Still Pending
You may have seen in the news earlier this year that Ringling Bros. went on trial in Feb-March for violating the Endangered Species Act by threatening the survival of Asian elephants through their ongoing abusive treatment. The trial lasted for six weeks, closing arguments were heard, and to this date the plaintiffs are still waiting to hear back from the judge on his ruling. Keep your eyes open for the release of the results of this case because if the judge rules in the plaintiffs' favor, it means Ringling will be forced to give up their elephant acts for good. This could be the beginning of the end of the animal circus industry. (In fact, Bolivia is already there! http://www.sdcitybeat.com/cms/story/detail/the_greatest_sham_on_earth/8292/ )
To find out more about the trial including court documents, visit http://www.api4animals.org/a1a6_ringling.php
What's Wrong with Animal Circuses?
Animals used in circuses live miserable lives of exploitation, deprivation, confinement, and violent training. In order to get wild animals to perform unnatural, uncomfortable, and often dangerous tricks, they are beaten into submission using whips, electric prods, and bullhooks. They are trucked around from city to city in boxcars with no heat or air conditioning. When elephants are not performing, they are kept chained up by one front leg and one back leg; big cats and other animals are kept in cages so small they can barely turn around comfortably. Most importantly, the circus takes animals far from their natural homes, traumatically separates them from their families, and deprives them of their basic needs and desires to exercise, roam, socialize, forage, and play. Stereotypic behaviors such as swaying back and forth, head-bobbing, pacing, bar-biting, and self-mutilation are common signs of mental distress, and are not behaviors seen in nature.
Ringling Bros. has a long death list of animals who have died of neglect, abuse, or highly suspicious causes while under their “care”, including: Ricardo, an 8 month old baby elephant taken from his mother way too soon (since elephants live with their families their whole lives there really is no “too soon”), fell off a pedestal fracturing both hind legs, and died; Benjamin, a baby elephant removed from his mother before she could teach him how to swim, ran into a pool in fear from a trainer with a bullhook, and drowned; Kenny, a baby elephant who was forced to perform while sick and died from his illness later that night (incidentally, Ringling paid $20,000 to settle USDA charges out of court for failing to provide veterinary care to Kenny); Clyde, a lion who died of heat exhaustion in a boxcar while traveling through the Mojave Desert; and Arnie, a tiger who was shot five times by his trainer while he was locked in a cage. For more incidents, violations, and deaths see http://www.api4animals.org/a1a6c_incidents.php
One of the most irritating pieces of propaganda Ringling loves to gloat about is that they run an Elephant Conservation Center in Florida where, they claim, they are helping to “save endangered elephants”. This is a joke. None of the elephants born at the center are ever released into the wild. In fact, the center amounts to nothing more than a highly-glorified breeding center to raise more “stocks” of elephants to perform in their circus, since they are no longer able to take animals from their natural homes in the wild.

Join VFA in standing against the torturous realities of the circus animal industry.
Hope to see you there.


Voices for Animals of Western Pennsylvania

Post Office Box 2751

Pittsburgh , PA 15230