Subject: June news from Marin VEG
From: Patti Breitman <>
Date: 2019-05-31, 9:23 AM
To: undisclosed-recipients: ;

June,  2019
Marin VEG

Below is news about Sanctuary Bistro closing,  a celebration of Animal Place, an invitation to collect school supplies for farm workers' children, information on two new films (one recommended on June 26),  a guide to veg dining in the Bay Area,  an affordable, yummy fundraiser for Vegan Outreach, a new ready-to-eat vegan meal delivery service, and much more. Happy reading!  Note: You do not need to be on Facebook to read the FB posts that are linked in some items below.

But first, I must rave about soap plants:
June is the time to watch soap plants blossom! If you are patient and  arrive early enough (3:00? 4:00?)  you may be able to watch the buds open and the flowers emerge. While I'm certain these can be found throughout Marin, here is where I see them. Starting now and until about June 21, on any afternoon after 4:00, walk for about five minutes or less on the fire road at the end of Glen Drive in Fairfax.  Just as it starts to go uphill  (not the down and up  dip, but a real uphill), on your right in about thirty steps are a few magnificent soap plants with dozens of buds and  blossoms on each. Each bud opens just once, late in the day, and the flower lasts only 12 hours or so. These are delicate white flowers with six slender petals that remind me of dancers doing back bends. If you passed this plant earlier in the day you might not even notice it.  For years that's what I did until a few years ago when I discovered the flowers on a rare late-in-the-day walk.  Once you recognize it, look for it also on your way back to Glen Drive,  just as the fire road comes out of the dip, on your left. Let me know if you find them. They're my favorite thing about June.

Saturday, June 8
Tour at Rancho Compasion
Revel with the rescued animals at Marin's local sanctuary, Rancho Compasion, in Nicasio! Meet the cows, goats, sheep, birds, pigs, ducks and chickens on a tour of Rancho Compasion from 4 until 5:30 on Saturday, June 8.  Only a few spots are left, and the next tour will be on Saturday, July 13.  The cost is $20 plus a fee of $2.85.  At the end of these summer tours you can stay for a wine and (Miyoko's) cheese reception. Sign up is mandatory, and you can do that for the June or July event at

Saturday June 8
Vegan Outreach  Fundraiser at Veggie Grill
Between 11 AM and 4 PM on Saturday, June 8, Veggie Grill will donate 33% of your bill to Vegan Outreach if you mention Vegan Outreach when you order.  What a delicious way to support this influential and effective organization!  Veggie Grill is in Corte Madera's Town Center shopping center (the one on the west side of 101).  Learn more at

Saturday, June 15
Goat Yoga at Goatlandia
Check out to learn more about this unique goat sanctuary.  Sign up for goat yoga and enjoy 90 minutes of yoga and a post-yoga smoothie, and, of course, time with the goats!  The cost is $65.  Don't be surprised (as I was) that the goat yoga is offered through Airbnb. You will be re-directed to Airbnb when you click on goat yoga at Goatlandia's site.

Wednesday, June 26

Film showing: A Prayer for Compassion
And Vegan Dinner
Opera Plaza in San Francisco

Will Tuttle speaking during Q&A
Come see A Prayer for Compassion, a new documentary film aimed at religious and spiritual people who are not yet vegetarian or vegan. The movie features leaders from many different religious and spiritual paths talking about how going VEG is in alignment with and called for by each of the religions and paths.  The film will be shown on Wednesday, June 26 at the community room at Opera Plaza in San Francisco.  Will Tuttle, author of The World Peace Diet, who is in the film, will be there for the Q&A following the screening.  Reservations are required. The evening begins with a delicious, vegan meal prepared by Patricia Koot. The cost for the meal and film is $15, payable at the event.  Reserve your space by email to or by phone at (888) 234-1361  Once you are on the list, details about how to get there will be emailed to you.  I am proud to be an executive producer of A Prayer for Compassion (which means I made a financial contribution towards its creation).  I look forward to seeing you on June 26 for this first Bay Area screening. Learn more about the film and watch a trailer at

Saturday, June 29
 Animal Place's 30th Anniversary and
New Rescue and Adoption Center
Fund Raising Celebration in Petaluma
Happy 30th Birthday to the wonderful Animal Place! And congratulations on opening a new rescue and adoption center in Petaluma!  You can celebrate both of these landmark achievements at a party on Saturday, June 29 from 6 to 9 PM in Petaluma.   Enjoy vegan food, live music, a silent auction and a tour of their new facility. Tickets are $75 and can be purchased at

Hold the date:
Saturday, July 6 (Yes, July)
Noon - 2 PM
Vegan Barbecue and Hope Bohanec's 50th Birthday
The Executive Director of Compassionate Living, Hope Bohanec, is celebrating her 50th birthday with a vegan barbecue in Cotati Downtown Plaza Park on Saturday, July 6 from 12 noon until 2 PM.  Burgers, hotdogs, and all the fixings will be provided.  Please bring a picnic salad to share (greens, potato, fruit, or coleslaw, for example).  Blankets will be available, but bring a folding chair if you wish. And if you choose to bring a gift for Hope (totally not necessary), she requests only a houseplant, as she recently moved and that's the only item  in short supply.  The park is at 8167 La Plaza Drive in Cotati.  Here is the Facebook page for the event:

School Supplies for the Children of Farm Workers
Now Until July 10
The Food Empowerment Project is once again collecting new back packs and school supplies for the children of farm workers.  This is not charity, but a way to thank the families that put food on our tables.  See what's needed and learn more at  In Marin you can bring the supplies until July 10 to Marin Humane (171 Bel Marin Keys Blvd., Novato) On Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays Saturdays and Sundays from 2 until 5:30.  Wednesdays from 10 to & PM.  Be sure to mark your contribution: Attention Cindy Machado.

The Vegan RD
On Privilege, Priorities, and Processed Foods
I am sharing a link to a wonderful and important essay by Virginia Messina, the Vegan RD. She writes about access to healthy food, and why, as vegans, we should be celebrating all the new plant based burgers that are showing up at fast food restaurants.

Veg Ready Meals Now Available
Healthy vegan meals that do not need refrigeration are now available from VegReady.  Delivered by mail, fully prepared and ready to eat, these meals are one of the fastest ways to have lunch or dinner ready when you are.  Order one time only or sign up for monthly delivery and see more at

When Vegan Companies Go Mainstream
I like this essay by Karen Davis of United Poultry Concerns about vegan foods on shelves with non-vegan foods in supermarkets.  My thinking on this has evolved in recent years.  I can now see the benefit of having a huge company buy a small vegan one. At the very least, the marketing budget, store placement and national availability are all enhanced when a food giant takes on a vegan product.


Great New Project from Plant Based News Association
Have you ever been at an airport or hospital and wanted to grab a quick bite? Have you noticed that the vegan pickings were slim? Now, the Plant Based Food Association is offering refrigerated and frozen kiosks plus shelf space for vegan snacks and meals for people on the go.  The concept is called The Power Plant, and when it was introduced at the National Restaurant Show in Chicago, the response was positive.  Take a look at these Power Plants and learn  more about this brilliant new convenience at

Can a Keto Diet Be Healthy?

Dr. Kim Williams, past president of the American College of Cardiology and a staunch vegan advocate has changed his mind on Keto diets.  Learn what he has to say about this trendy, and usually dangerous diet at  This wise doctor is clearly not an ethical vegan, but an evidence based, health minded one.

Be Counted!
A project called The Big Vegan Count is inviting vegans to log in and be counted.  You can see how many people did this, by country, at the site.  So far the UK is way ahead.  Go to to learn more and to be counted.

The Biggest Little Farm, New Film that Glorifies Animal Agriculture
A number of people encouraged me to see The Biggest Little Farm, a new documentary about a couple from Los Angeles who start a farm. What a disappointment! While the movie is well made, this true story about the creation and growth of the couple's farm seemed to me to reinforce a myth that says small farms are a humane way to raise animals for food. Scenes of animals with tags in their ears, chicks arriving by mail from hatcheries, and farmers retrieving the bodies of chickens who were killed by a fox were hard for me to watch .  Yes, the animals live better lives on this kind of farm than on CAFOs (factory farms).  But they are still sold and killed in their youth to satisfy the habits and taste buds of people who enjoy the taste of their flesh.  Eating animals is not necessary for human health, but you'd never know that from watching this film.

Bay Area Veg Guide
Check out this cool guide to vegetarian and vegan restaurants and resources in the Bay Area:  Thanks to Amy A for telling me about this. Apparently a high school student put it together.

Dr. John McDougall on Gluten Free, GMO Foods, Paleo trends
I just discovered this 50-minute video from one of Dr.McDougall's advance study weekends. He calls gluten free, paleo, and  gmo concerns distractions from the truth about food.  While I find his style off putting, the information he presents here makes sense. If you have friends or relatives who struggle with weight, this might be a good talk to share with them. Watch it first, yourself.

KFC Exploring Vegan Options
 When it was determined many years ago that fried food was bad for our health, Kentucky Fried Chicken changed not its menu, but its name. KFC still sells fried birds, but now they are looking at what it might be like to offer also vegan fried food.  So many fast food chains are realizing there's a market for vegans that they're missing, and now KFC is among them.  Read the news at
Belgium Wants to Criminalize Vegan Families
You may have heard that the  Royal Academy of Medicine in Belgium considers raising your children as vegans a criminal offense.    The Physicians' Committee for Responsible Medicine has this to say about that:
As I learned from Melanie Joy ( and Will Tuttle (, children are "forced" to eat whatever their parents serve them.  Nobody questions this when the parents offer up what the majority is eating, even when those food choices lead to disease later in life. When parents want to lower the risk of these diseases for their children, and thus provide vegan fare, the families are criticized for coercing their children to eat what others mistakenly call a dangerous diet.

Southern California Now Has Vegan Smoothie and Juice Vending Machines They made their debut in and around Los Angeles, and we can only hope they move north to the Bay Area.  Watch for these vending machines that serve fresh juice and smoothies!    Here's the story:

Just Mayo Not Walking the Talk
I was dismayed to learn from JoAnn F. that the Just company (formerly known as Hampton Creek) served animal flesh at a recent party it hosted to celebrate the launch of its Just Eggs product.  As much as I like the taste of Just Mayo, I will be switching to Follow Your Heart's Veganaise. Follow Your Heart also makes a vegan egg, and it's a company that always walks its talk. At the end of this linked piece you will see that Just's CEO promised not to do that again. Still . . . See the whole story in this piece from Jackie Day at

Free From Harm Replies to Common Challenge to Vegans
Here is a beautifully written piece by Robert Grillo that answers the claim "Animals eat other animals, so why shouldn't we?"

Vegan or Plant Based: What's the Difference?
This is one of the clearest explanations I've seen. It explains that veganism is a lifestyle choice based on minimizing harm. Plant based is only a way of eating. The writer gets the last sentence wrong, though. Veganism is a form of vegetarianism, not the other way around. 

Sanctuary Bistro to Close
One of my favorite restaurants, Sanctuary Bistro in Berkeley, is going to close in a few months. The owners are moving back East to be near family.  If you haven't been to this superb restaurant yet, make your reservation for dinner or show up for lunch or brunch right away. The food is all vegan, gluten free, and delicious. The desserts are my favorites in the Bay Area. The restaurant is not too far from the Buchanan Street exit off 580, on the west side of Berkeley, and there is usually plenty of street parking (meters) available.  Their web site is where you can find their address, phone number, and moreHere is the text of the email I received with the news:

This is the hardest email I have ever had to write. It is with both sadness and joy that we let you know of our intention to move to Charlotte, N.C. later this year.

The restaurant will remain open until the restaurant sells so you still have plenty of time to come in and celebrate with us (and redeem those gift certificates) because we don't have a closing date at this time. We did, however, want you to hear this directly from us and not through the inevitable word of mouth, now that we have put the restaurant on the market. 

Opening Sanctuary has been our proudest achievement. We have celebrated with you. We have shared so much with all of you - the growth of our children and life’s joys and struggles; the memories of your adopted babies’ first week on this planet sharing a meal with us; holding and training your babies at an early age ... at six months, eight months, and two years. Together we’ve cried over our last bowl of chowder right before the passing of our longtime guest and friend; heard your stories of moving into new homes. You've shared with us the antics of your feral cats, about your gardens that you are growing, the businesses and experiences you are venturing on as you leave for college and even when it was time for you to move away. 

Through our initiatives and non-profit efforts we have over the years, all come together to do our part to turn a ripple into a wave to make this world a better place.

Wow, just writing this brings tears to my eyes. We truly have made so many stories together. You have enriched our lives and I hope we were able to enrich yours. 

My greatest concern is that you feel let down by this news. I want to be as transparent as possible so you understand why we made this difficult choice.

Family, as you know, is so important. Although my family is tough, they have been through a lot in the last 10 years. My sister is a rock star of a mom to my niece, a cancer survivor, and three other beautiful babies. My brother works overseas every other month and has the most precious puppy.  My kids love their crazy Uncle Bob. My other sister has two beautiful children and just won a tennis medal. Of late, I have been traveling back and forth to home to help my mom recover from knee surgery. She is also a two- time breast cancer survivor. 

It is time to find my way closer to them... so I can see them more often; so our kids can know each other, play together and share more than just genetics.

Our plan is to maintain the momentum on that wave we’ve started together. Our new restaurant will open soon and we will let you know when we do. We hope you’ll stop by and say hi if you happen to be in the Charlotte area. 

We have just put our toes in the water for the sale of our space. It will take time. (At the very minimum four months.) In the meantime, please come in  - be sure and you use your gift certificates! And most importantly, let’s share another hug.

We will keep you updated so you know exactly where we are and so we don’t surprise you by just shuttering our doors. Again, we are in this together. 

It is with deep love and admiration for all of you that we share our news...


Jennifer, Chef Barry, Jayden, and Adeline


What Else to Do in June
As always, be sure to look at  and  to find out what's happening in the coming weeks. And check out Compassionate Living in Sonoma County. Their web site is and The San Francisco Veg Society at www.  


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