We conducted a post-event survey after the 2016 VegFest Oahu event. Total attendance for the festival is estimated at 3500-4000 by the Mayor’s office. The survey results below reflect a small sample of total attendees who completed our online survey (about 2%). Nonetheless, we are very encouraged by the results.
Veg Level of Attendees Before and After VegFest Oahu
We asked our attendees what their diet was typically like before attending VegFest Oahu and how they think they will now eat after going to VegFest Oahu. The results below show a 12% total decrease in the meat eating categories which all shifted over to eating more vegan.
Age Range of Attendees of VegFest Oahu
There was a wide variety of ages that attended VegFest Oahu. This was also noticed and commented on by several survey responders in the comments section below.
What did you learn while at VegFest Oahu? (survey answers):
- People are becoming more receptive and the tide is changing.
- I learned that even meat eaters came to enjoy Vegfest Oahu.
- I learned that I need to make a bigger effort to eat more healthy. There is a supportive group of people out there, and we are not alone in this movement!
- We have a growing community of health conscious people on island.
- I am aware of GMOs but I wasn’t aware there are community organizations advocating against it. I was surprised and hope to get more involved.
- I learned how to sneak veggies into my husband’s diet without him noticing.
- I learned about some influential people that believe and practice veganism, which inspired me more.
- There is a larger, more diverse group of veg-friendly people here on Oahu than I expected.
- I learned that we eat a lot out of habit and not mindfulness.
- I was able to take my meat eating friend with me and she decided to start eating less meat and incorporate more vegetarian meals.
- I loved learning about all the natural products from vendors.
- I learned about different snack options and how eating vegan is not as difficult as people like to think.
- I was expecting mostly younger folks and was surprised to see such a mix of people and backgrounds.
- I learned there are some very incredible organizations that I wasn’t aware of until attending VegFest Oahu.
- I learned in depth vegan education and how many people are interested in a plant-based diet.
- Other vegans on Oahu DO exist! There are a lot of vegans on Oahu that I didn’t know about.
- I appreciated the free magazines.
- There are LOTS of people who embrace a vegan lifestyle and/or are considering it.
- I learned about all the support the veg-community has here.
- That if a VegFest is created then people will come!
What would you tell a friend about why it was worth it to go to VegFest Oahu? (survey answers):
- It was a great festival, had a blast.
- Amazing food and learning environment.
- It was one of the most educational and fun fests I have attended.
- Fun and informative.
- Great food, atmosphere, education, friendly people.
- I was introduced to new foods that are absolute staples in our meal routine now! Plus, I discovered locally grown products that are awesome!
- VegFest Oahu was very well organized and was open to many who are vegan for different reasons; people were so friendly and the atmosphere was very welcoming.
- Go early to get the grinds, meet up with friends and have a good time connecting with friends of like mind.
- Encourages vegetarian reform for the environment.
- Great vibes! Great people!
- A lot of great resources and speakers.
- Education, learning things you didn’t know about.
- Great food, great people, music, dancing, inspiration for a healthy lifestyle, meet friends with similar interests, learn about the reality of the animal industry.
- Health and environmental impact info.
- Great atmosphere – superb food – good vibes.
- There are far and few events which are free that inspire a healthy lifestyle in Hawaii for the community. Awesome Job, can’t wait til next year – there were so many interesting booths and activities! Great turnout! and Great music!
- To learn about veganism and how good the food is.
- It was fun, well organized and well attended.
- Great food, great music and awesome people.
- It’s a great opportunity to learn about the lifestyle and effect some positive change in one’s life and for the world.
- Mainly that there was a LOT of good education and activities, not only vendors.
- Sample vegan food and get to meet and be around other like-minded people.
- It is helpful to see other dedicated people and to be more open minded about a compassionate community that cares about our planet and other beings.
- Learn to eat healthier.
- Lots of good food that you aren’t able to tell is plant based.
- Learn about how to take care of their health, the environment, and animals.
- Educational and enlightening.
- Good vibrations, all around peace and love and learning.
- Teaches us about healthy living.
- Gives you a reason to become vegetarian.
- Fun, great food, nice people, the music was wonderful and everyone was very friendly.
- Lively community happening and a great, earth-saving cause.
- Good opportunity to learn more about good food.
- Community event that invests in healthy lifestyle choices.
- Good community feel (vibe) and food.
- Free vegetarian samples to check out, good music, interesting speakers, food, location (green lawn).
- Delicious vegan food all in one place!
- To learn how to incorporate yummy vegan and vegetarian food into their diet and to be outside, enjoying community.
- Great event, good feelings, delicious foods, lectures, cooking demos, music.
- Be with like-minded people and discover vegan foods and products available in Hawaii.
Testimonials about VegFest Oahu
“VegFest Oahu was a transformative event for many including myself! I got a chance to reconnect with people I hadn’t seen in a very long time and also make new connections. Just as it can be powerful in our own minds to think in different ways and create new connections, so is it important on a social level. This connecting and reconnecting with people at VegFest Oahu allowed me to see just how many people I know understand the importance of leaving less of a carbon footprint, of being gentler to their own bodies, and Mother Earth. Throughout the day I visited different booths including the House of Truth which was a real game changer for me to finally take the leap I had been contemplating for years and go vegan! This booth actually paid people one dollar to watch a 5 minute video. In this video and in the pamphlets they shared they made apparent how very gruesome and cruel the meat industry is. It’s one thing to have a few thoughts about how the meat industry effects the animals, our bodies, and Mother Earth. It’s another thing to actually see what’s happening, to talk to people who have seen and felt the effects, and to learn the facts about what is happening to our planet. Since that day I have been vegan and I must say that my body and mind are thanking me. My body feels clean and strong. Subconsciously there’s something soothing about knowing that I am really taking action towards justice. Sometimes doing what’s right really just feels so good! — Shana, Attendee
“Three things we loved about the experience: the community atmosphere, meeting your team members, hearing the inspiring speakers, and the overall focus on promoting healthy, sustainable living. Thank you so much for inviting us and for having someone help us set up. I very much appreciate that!” – May del Rosario, Still and Moving Center
“I have been gathering my thoughts for the last day, trying to find an eloquent way of saying MAHALO for the phenomenal job you did coordinating VegFest Oahu 2016. We had an amazing time on all fronts. Truly, it was an exhilarating and uplifting experience. I have already received feedback that there should be a quarterly VegFest! Mahalo nui loa.” — Malia Helela, Opening Hula Performance
“Thanks for motivating us to participate in this year’s VegFest Oahu. I had a really good time interacting with the attendees and our booth also did well! The crowd was a great encouragement and validated our business’ existence— people demand good food and appreciate products like ours and it feels great to be wanted and appreciated! Speaking of appreciation- thanks to your outstanding volunteers. They definitely made my one-person team run smoother than expected. When I needed help or asked a question, they didn’t just pass my trouble to some else, they made sure that my problem was taken care of until the end. Even the table/chairs/sandbag workers were great and helped me evened out my hilly terrain so my jars wouldn’t slide down the tables. The music was great, the vibe was chill and my vendor neighbors were great. I just want to let you know that you did a great job in organizing. Your attention to every detail was amazing— just wanted you to know I appreciate your effort.” –– Laarni, Counter Culture, Food Vendor
“It was a great place for graduates of our Ornish Lifestyle Medicine program to gather and learn more about vegetarian options and community options. It was also great to interact with our formal and informal partners like Down to Earth and Blue Zones.” — ‘Ekahi Ornish Lifestyle Center, Sponsor
“It was just so successful and magnificent and I was truly in heaven all day that day. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!! For making that ALL Possible for all the loads of people and the animals and the planet. You Blew MY MIND!!!” — Shauna Leake, SAFA, Booth Volunteer