What is Grand Rapids VegFest?

Our Mission: We connect interested consumers in our West Michigan community with vegan-friendly products and services to empower individuals to make healthier and more compassionate choices and to support vegan-friendly businesses.

What is VegFest?

VegFest is an annual vegetarian food festival held in cities around the world to promote veganism and vegetarianism, healthy lifestyles, compassion for animals and conservation of the environment.

Why Grand Rapids?

Grand Rapids is one of the most vegan friendly cities in the US with more than 40 identified vegan friendly restaurants in town and boasting one of the oldest, most active vegetarian Meetup groups.

Do I need to be vegan to attend?


The goal of annual Grand Rapids Veg Fest is simple: to promote plant based diets for health, compassion, and conservation of the environment. With local and national vendors, nationally-recognized speakers and food samples galore, Vegfest is the place for vegans, vegetarians, or omnivores curious about the health benefits of a plant based diet

We’ve invited local and national vegan businesses including foods, cosmetics, clothing and fashion, animal rights organizations, restaurants and wellness coaches. Exhibitors are encouraged to provide samples, sell products on site, promote their organization and recruit volunteers for their campaign. Attendees will be able to learn about new products, make connections with local vendors, watch plant based cooking demonstrations, attend lectures and receive the support and resources to learn how a plant based diet could work for them.

About Grand Rapids

Grand Rapids is one of the most vegan-friendly cities in the United States with more than 40 identified vegan-friendly restaurants in town, an active support organization  and a strong and active vegan MeetUp group established in 2003.

Grand Rapids hosts three major monthly plant-based potluck gatherings where vegans, vegetarians and those curious can meet, eat and share recipes and information:

Grand Rapids offers many great resources for vegans, vegetarians and those curious about making the transition as well as an active, vibrant and supportive plant-based community. There are several advocacy and community-building groups in the city and surrounding area, and we hope to make GR VegFest the hub for all things related to the vegan lifestyle in west Michigan.

Join our Meetup or find us on Facebook for the latest listing of events in the area.

About Plant Based Roots

Who are we? What is our purpose? Simple – Plant Based Roots is organized by passionate and energetic people like you who care about health, wellness, animals, and environment. Interested in joining our team? Fill out our volunteer application form and tell us about who you are and what you are interested in!

Erica Wisniewski

Veg since: 2012  Vegetarian since: 1989

Your go-to vegan dish: Chickpea Tuna Salad

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: I volunteer at GR VegFest because I want to show people that being vegan is the kindest and most compassionate way to live your life.



Stephanie Albertson

Marketing Director

My name is Stephanie. I love pit bulls, spicy food, and tap dancing. I am happy to be involved in GR VegFest in order to raise awareness about the health, social, and environmental benefits of being vegan!


Special Events Coordinator

After years of suffering with allergies, being sick all the time, weight issues, and horrible migraines, RB decided she had had enough and went plant based cold tufurky! As in ‘I’m a Vegan Mother Clucker!’ as Liz says! And she hasn’t looked back. People started noticing the health changes and two nieces approached asking her to mentor them long distance. SEW they started a blog posting recipes, tips and ideas to share. Others followed. Life is SEW good being plant based!

Wendy Jones

Veg since: 1990

Your go-to vegan dish: Pesto mac and ‘cheeze’

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: There are many vegans out there, they just don’t know it yet. They need to be informed about the impact of their food choices and they need the tools to get there. That’s where we come in.

Zuzu Nyson

Veg since: 2017  Vegetarian since: 2008

Your go-to vegan dish: BBQ Jackfruit Sandwich

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: I volunteer at GR VegFest because I believe being vegan is one of the largest steps towards a healthier, greener, and more compassionate world and I want to help encourage others to embrace this lifestyle too! Meeting other like-minded individuals at the GR VegFest committee has been so heartwarming and gives me hope that humans want to learn, evolve, and prosper and want that for others too.

Liz Agerson

Veg since: 2016

Your go-to vegan dish: Bowl of seasonal fresh fruit topped with granola and soy milk

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: After learning and experiencing all the benefits of being vegan, I want to empower others with knowledge to live healthier, kinder, gentler, and more compassionate lives. I also get to work with a great group of people too!

Allie Gadziemski

Veg since: 2016

Your go-to vegan dish: Anything with potatoes or avocado. 🙂

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: I want to help people see the ease, deliciousness and beauty being vegan!

Pete Vissar

Veg since: 2015

Your go-to vegan dish: Tempeh Reuben

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: To educate people on how the future of the Earth’s climate and human health will depend on developing alternative standard-of-living practices.

Patricia Baxter

Veg since: 2013

Your go-to vegan dish: Cashew Alfredo

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: To continue to learn about being Vegan for life!

Heather Pike

Veg since: 2015

Your go-to vegan dish: Lentil Soup

Why you volunteer at GR VegFest: I enjoy the atmosphere!