Thanks for a Successful Give to the Max Day!

GTTM Thank You


Thanks to many generous donors, including many of you who also volunteer your time, and to everyone who shared or liked our posts, we came in well over last year for funds raised on Give to the Max Day to continue our work to help animals! This included contributions from nearly 40 brand new donors who committed to helping animals!

It’s moments like this when so many members of the community come together to take action that prove our power to incite change.

You are amazing.

With love and gratitude,
ARC Staff and Board of Directors

Save the Date for Give to the Max Day

GTMD-ARC-2015If you’re a Minnesotan, you’ve probably heard of Give to the Max, our state’s awesome day of giving.

For 24 hours on Thursday, November 12, Minnesota-based non-profits will celebrate the work we do to make the world a better place by asking our supporters to donate to causes dear to their hearts.

Most of our lives are pretty comfortable compared to a duck on a foie gras farm, an elephant in a circus, a male baby chick tossed out like garbage, or a homeless cat digging in the trash for food. Donating to ARC provides the support to ensure we can advocate for these animals in need. Please donate now – even a small amount makes a big difference. This is definitely the time to hop on the bandwagon and join in the fun of giving!

Leading ARC’s Work for Animals into the Future

ChelseaThe Animal Rights Coalition is pleased to announce that Greg Kiefer has joined ARC as the new ARC Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator, and that Chelsea Hassler is staying on board as ARC Program Director. Greg has been an effective, capable, and well-liked volunteer at ARC and brings many skills that will help expand our activism and outreach. In the year Chelsea has been with ARC, she has proven herself a dedicated, reliable, and passionate leader and has grown our outreach efforts significantly.


Greg KIeferFrom helping people transition to a plant-based diet to publicizing the abuse of animals in laboratories to educating the public about the exploitation of animals used in entertainment, ARC’s unique and innovative education and outreach programs reach thousands of people every year. We are confident that Chelsea and Greg will do a great job of leading this work to end the suffering, abuse, and exploitation of animals.

The Rescue of a Starving Dog: What’s Wrong with Humane Enforcement in Minnesota

max image 5A lifelong animal advocate in our community has incurred massive debt from legal fees for rescuing a starving and abused dog. One of her dear friends and the Animal Rights Coalition are hosting several rummage sales to help defray these costs.

Please bring friends, family, acquaintances. You get the picture – bring one, bring all. There will be lots of new and gently used household items, companion animal items, framed art, and more. First fundraiser is on Saturday, 10/24 from 10:00-4:00 at Minnehaha Free Space, 3747 Minnehaha Ave. in Minneapolis.

max image 3Read THE ARREST and COURT STORY of the rescue of a starving and abused dog and learn about what’s wrong with our system of humane enforcement in Minnesota. This dog was failed on so many levels. What is it going to take to get authorities in our state to enforce the laws that the Minnesota legislature has passed in good faith – the same laws that these authorities take an oath to enforce?

Changes at ARC

It is with a mixture of sadness and gratitude that we announce that Dallas Rising will be stepping down as the Animal Rights Coalition’s Executive Director as of October 15, 2015. For the past seven years, Dallas has been the public face of ARC, initiating new programs, growing existing programs, and carrying out ARC’s mission of ending the suffering, abuse, and exploitation of non-human animals through information, education, and advocacy. Dallas has also demonstrated a strong commitment to fighting all forms of oppression and reducing ARC’s environmental impact. We sincerely thank Dallas for her dedication to ARC and wish her well in her future endeavors.

From Dallas Rising, Executive Director:
In the nearly eight years I’ve worked at ARC, I have had the privilege to have my day job support my life long dream and mission to be a serious and powerful force for animals.

I have had the great honor of getting to know and work with some of the best people I’ve ever met because of my position here. I’ve formed some deep and lasting friendships and learned a lot from the courageous, committed, and creative people who volunteer their time and talents for animals via ARC. I have especially enjoyed working with my colleague, Chelsea, who brings such kindness, talent, and wit to our work.

It is for these reasons that I announce my resignation as Executive Director at the Animal Rights Coalition with mixed emotions. I threw myself into it with as much passion and heart as I could, and it’s hard to leave something I’ve put so much of myself into. But it’s time.

My last day is October 15th and I will be staying in the Twin Cities. I look forward to opportunities to continue to serve animals in another capacity and hope to cross paths with many of you again in the future. In the mean time, I will be spending more time with my family, giving extra care and attention to our aging and ailing boys, Max and Taz.

Protest Exotic Animal Rides at the Ren Fest

579636_10151624959282825_1591945817_n-300x120While many people jump at the opportunity to get close to animals by buying exotic animal rides at fairs and fests, they probably wouldn’t if they knew about the suffering the animals endure being treated as amusement park attractions.

Much of the violence isn’t seen by the public because the owners of these operations know that people would be enraged if they knew how these animals are punished and beaten into submission. They have to make the elephants avoidant to punishment so that they will behave in front of spectators.

These animals are chained for many hours every day. They are trucked around the country in small trailers or trucks. If they were allowed to live in the wild, they would have extensive social networks and travel miles upon miles every day. But when they’re sentenced to being “rides”, they have to plod in boring circles day after day with hundreds of pounds on their backs, for hour upon boring, uncomfortable hour.

Yet, despite this, the Minnesota Renaissance Festival continues to feature exotic animal rides.

Join us in protest Saturday, October 3rd from 10am-12 noon. We will meet at the Highway 169 entrance at 3525 145th Street West in Shakopee. Signs will be provided, as will literature to hand out. All you need to do is show up with your sunscreen on and water in hand. If you’d like to carpool from the ARC office in south Minneapolis, please post in the Facebook event.

Tell the MN Ren Fest that Animal Abuse is Unacceptable

11954756_10153159707022825_5653617506396730571_nKrissy is one of the elephants forced to walk in circles all day with people on her back at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival. Krissy is 26 years old. She was taken from the wild as a baby and since then has endured brutal beatings, electric shocks, and spent most of her life in chains.

This is Mike Swain, son of Bill Swain, the owner of Trunks and Humps, the supplier for the elephant rides at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival. You can see Mike Swain beating Krissy, viciously dragging her to the ground with a hook, and kicking her in the face. This video was taken when Mike Swain, Krissy, and Boo were with Bailey Bros. Circus. Krissy is now “owned” by Bill Swain and Texas-based Trunks and Humps.

The Minnesota Renaissance Festival needs to know that this is unacceptable. Join our demonstration on Sunday, September 6 from noon-2:00 p.m. Meet at the Highway 169 entrance at 3525 145th Street West in Shakopee. Carpool will also be available from the ARC office. Signs will be provided, as will literature to hand out. All you need to do is show up with your sunscreen on and water in hand. More details at Minnesota Animal Rights Meetup.

Don’t Get Taken for A Ride at the Ren Fest

Boycott Ren Fest Exotic Animal RidesWhen an intelligent, social, endangered elephant is reduced to an amusement park ride, it degrades us all in light of what we know about their complex needs. Elephants move in big, open spaces, live in large herds, and show compassion for family members. Camels also travel for miles a day in the open desert and have extensive social networks in the wild. In contrast, wild animals used for rides endure confinement, long journeys in cramped vehicles, brutal control methods, and physical violence.You can help end this abuse.

Many people haven’t thought about animal rides from the animals’ point of view. These incredible creatures are carted from one location to another and then prodded to walk in circles day after day after day. Even the U.S. Department of Agriculture warns, “You always put yourself at risk when you go near an elephant, no matter how good the trainer/handler and elephant appear to be.” This is because elephants are wild animals who are forced to comply with their handlers’ demands by force, and sometimes they will reach a limit, resist their captors, and revolt.

Yet, despite their knowledge of the inherent cruelty and danger, the Minnesota Renaissance Festival continues to feature exotic animal rides. Call the Ren Fest promoter, Mid-America Festivals, at 952-445-7361 or email them at and let them know many festivals have dropped these rides and you’d like them to be next.

Join our protest on Sunday, August 30th from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to raise awareness about these rides. Meet at the Highway 169 entrance to the festival at 3525 145th Street West in Shakopee. Find more details at Minnesota Animal Rights Meetup

Sit out on the rides, not on the animals; there are lots of ways to have a great time at the fest without hurting animals!