Go west to the Fest

Just a quick note here before I, for one, head off on Thursday to the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, site of Vegetarian Summerfest, the best veggie conference in North America.

OK, OK, maybe I'm a little biased as someone who often participates in the entertainment at this event (I'll be singing, cartooning and hosting a 'tweetup' of social-media veggies this year - but I should stress that I don't get any kickback for mentioning it here), but I think it really is pretty remarkable that the North American Vegetarian Society holds its annual conference right here in our back yard (well, if you're in Philly, it's a back yard three hours or so down the turnpike, but still), and at such beautiful, pastoral location as the UPJ campus.

Why veg? I don't think I need to delve again into why reducing or eliminating animal products is just about the greenest thing you can do, nor to cite the growing number of studies showing the benefits of plant foods and the liabilities of meat. After all, the American Dietetic Association just revised and updated their official position on vegetarian diets to make it more of a ringing endorsment than ever.

But I will say that if you've been at all curious about plant-based eating and how to make it easy on a day-to-day basis, or if you want to immerse yourself in a wide variety of perspectives on the subject - or if you want to see if you can survive for a couple days eating nothing but vegan food - there's still time to register for a weekend visit.

If you do wind up there, be sure to say hello - I'll be the one wearing my Daily News shirt!