Collaborating with local vegan organizations is essential to a successful vegfest. In this case, organizers collaborated with vegan organizations in the greater Houston area. One vital partner was the PlantPure Pod network, whose mission is to empower community leaders, activists, and advocates in educating people using evidence-based research about the benefits of a whole-food, plant-based (WFPB) diet.
Promotional campaigns were also significant to the success of Rice VegFest 2019. These included investments in Facebook and Instagram ads (supported through a VegFund grant), incentives for vendors who joined in promotional partnership, and tokens for Rice University students, which effectively paid them five dollars to attend the fest. This last program required fundraising but was most influential in getting the student body involved.
The organizers used surveys to ask attendees about their experience. Of 500 responders, more than 50% were non-vegan. An overwhelming majority were satisfied with the event and plan to attend Rice VegFest again next year.
Working with such a large number of vendors can be tricky. It’s important to communicate expectations to prevent misunderstandings.