Meat-Free Weekend at the Veggie Food Fair

If you're a vegetarian, chances are you're already salivating like Pavlov's dog over the impending weekend-long nosh-fest otherwise known as the Vegetarian Food Fair. After all, it's rare to find so many meat-free eats in one place!

But the Veg Food Fair (starting today at Harbourfront Centre) has a lot more than just food; during this three-day event you can sink your teeth into everything from meaty discussions and lectures, to nourishing tai chi, yoga, and mediation lessons, to enriching music and dance presentatins. With a diversity of speakers, vendors, and participants, the Fair attempts to take a (dare I say it) holistic approach to the vegetarian lifestyle.

I'm typically wary of events such as these since the focus tends to oscillate between preaching to the converted and just plain preaching. Yet - perhaps because of the long-lost vegan inside of me or my belief in the importance of keeping an open mind - I believe that the Fair is worth investigating - even if you're a dedicated meat eater.

If you're skeptical, view the Fair as an opportunity to try new things - a chance to expand your mind, or at least just your taste buds. While some of the events are a little out there (Grow your own soy yogurt? No thanks!), many more may prove to be inspiring, thought-provoking, and surprisingly practical.

As an added bonus, this annual festival has a true Toronto feel. It celebrates a niche culture on a grand, multicultural scale, and provides a forum for unique people, perspectives, and opportunities - something that simply does not exist in most cities.

While it doesn't exactly make me long for my meat-free, dairy-free, egg-free, animal by-product-free days, it certainly does make me glad to be a Torontonian.

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