We made a difference in animals’ lives

ARC_AnnualReport2016_Cover_compressed2016 was a year of continued growth and innovation for ARC. We saw victories in individual programs and campaigns to help animals, continued to innovate and explore new forms of outreach, and expanded our community of animal advocates. Through outreach and education that raised awareness about the plight of animals and encouraged ethical choices, we made a difference in animals’ lives.

We want to thank our volunteers and donors for their gifts of time and funds in 2016. You are the backbone of the work we do. None of what we accomplish could be done without you. We’ve seen the treatment of animals shift and go through many stages and we’ve been there. Together with your help we’ll continue working to reshape the world for animals. Please check out our ARC Annual Report 2016 to see how we continued to reach a record number of people with the message that animals matter for their own reasons.

Roseville becomes first Minnesota city to ban sales of non-rescue dogs and cats in “pet” stores

Har Mar Pet StoreRoseville, Minnesota has banned the sale of dogs and cats from commercial breeders in pet stores! Thanks to everyone who attended the ARC protests at the Har Mar Mall, where the Har Mar Pet Store is located! You made a difference by helping to bring the issue of pet stores selling animals from commercial breeding facilities (puppy and kitten mills) to the public’s attention. See the Fox 9 news story which contains footage from ARC demonstrations at the Har Mar Mall last summer.

I don’t like words that hide the truth

grass-fed pastureGeorge Carlin once famously said, “I don’t like words that hide the truth. I don’t like words that conceal reality. I don’t like euphemisms or euphemistic language. And American English is loaded with euphemisms. Because Americans have a lot of trouble dealing with reality. Americans have trouble facing the truth. So they invent the kind of soft language to protect themselves from it.”

Nowhere is this more apparent than in the terminology used by animal exploitation industries for the products they promote to “conscious consumers” to get them to spend more money on the same suffering and death. Terms like “cage free”, “free range”, and “grass-fed” sound great and look even better on a carton of eggs or the wrapping of a steak. They evoke images of rolling green pastures on a small, family-owned farm and the romanticized agricultural practices of earlier rural society where all the milk came from your next door neighbor, several miles down the dirt road.

5th Annual Vegan Hotdish Cookoff: Mac N Cheese Edition

HDcookoff-2017-01Have a delicious time at the 5th Annual Twin Cities Vegan Hotdish Cookoff on Saturday, April 1 from noon-2:00 p.m. at Fuller Park Recreation Center, 48 St. and Grand Ave. in Minneapolis. By popular request, this year’s cookoff have a Mac N Cheese theme! Original and creative recipes from area cooks will compete in two prize categories: Audience Favorite and Judge’s Choice.

Our judge’s panel includes Laura VanZandt, social media director at the Herbivorous Butcher and local blogger at One Girl, Two Cities; Laura Matanah, Executive Director of Compassionate Action for Animals; and Mary Montoya, two-time cookoff winner.

Support ARC’s animal advocacy work while tasting a variety of Mac N Cheeses for only $1 a sample. Free beverages will be provided and there will be lots of great door prizes. Your best Church Lady attire is welcome, but not required.

Please RSVP on Vegan Meetup or the Facebook event page so we know about how many people to expect. We have a few contestant spots left (a $10 deposit reserves your spot and you’ll get the deposit back at the contest). All contestants will receive a participation prize. Email chelsea@animalrightscoalition.com to reserve your contestant spot now!

Remember the Animals on Valentine’s Day

Pigs and heartOn February 14th, we take a day to celebrate love and romance and affection for those special people in our lives. But what about the animals in our lives? Here are some suggestions of ways to show animals some extra love for Valentine’s Day.

Grooming: Just like humans, animals can get a lot of joy from some proper pampering. Even if it’s not in your budget to send Rufus T. Barkington to the spa, there are simple things you can do at home to keep him looking and feeling great. Trimming nails, brushing teeth, and combing fur keeps your cats and dogs happy and healthy, and can be a great bonding experience. Remember to be gentle and take your time. No one wants a rushed pedicure!

 

Gifts: Companion animals love new toys—and cats love the boxes they come in—so think about picking up a couple additions to their toy chest. Sometimes a fresh squeak from a ball or the jingle of a bell can bring out the puppy in our old friends. Search reviews online or journey to your local pet supply store and ask the experts what they recommend. They usually have great suggestions on what will entice and delight your companion.

Veganuary is Almost Over: Now What?

Go VeganWe’re almost one month into the new year! We hope everyone who made the Veganuary commitment has started to fall in love with their new healthy and compassionate approach to life. We also hope we can provide you with more resources to maintain your momentum and keep growing in your veganism! Here at the Animal Rights Coalition, a major focus of our outreach is helping newer vegans and the veg-curious feel supported in their community, and we take care of you with classes and events year-round. Below are some program highlights available to anyone looking for some extra help.

Vegan University
This is ARC’s mentorship program, which is offered as a free service to our community. Anyone looking for personalized help on their vegan journey can browse our mentor profiles and request to be taken under the wing of one of our experienced, knowledgeable, and personable members. Mentors are available to answer questions and provide moral support and an understanding ear. Many new vegans go through a period of strong emotions once they realize the world is a very different place when viewed through vegan eyes, and having someone with whom to speak about these feelings can make the transition more comfortable.

Ringling Bros. Circus to Close

RinglingThe curtain is coming down on “The Greatest Show on Earth.” The owner of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus has announced that the show will close forever in May. Thanks to animal activists all over the country who helped make this happen! It took a village and here in Minnesota, ARC has been chipping away at this archaic institution since the 80′s with billboards, letters to the editor, demonstrations, and handing out thousands of brochures, stickers, and circus coloring books for kids. Read the AP story.

Veganuary: Make the Change for 2017

Veganuary-and-an-offer-of-support-smalleryWith the new year quickly coming into view, people everywhere are rolling up their sleeves and getting to work on creating a better life, becoming a better version of themselves—yes indeed, it’s time for New Year’s resolutions. Recent developments in nutrition science and environmental concerns are bringing more and more people to embrace a shift toward vegetarianism and veganism, yet this change can seem daunting and even those with the best intentions may become discouraged from making the leap.

There is a program that makes going vegan not only easier, but truly welcoming: Veganuary. Veganuary Limited is a UK-based organization promoting a comprehensive month long trial run of veganism, giving those interested in the reasons for and logistics of a vegan lifestyle the support and encouragement to embrace a life of eating plants and thinking about their consumer choices. Veganuary aims to reduce the suffering of animals by inspiring and supporting people across the globe to go vegan for the month of January. The hope is that by providing a foundation for positive change and helping new vegans and the veg-curious begin their journey on the right foot, people will be able to avoid the common speed bumps and deterrents on the road to a lifetime of positive change for the animals, the planet, and individual well-being. Recidivism rates are highest within the first year of making any change in habit, and the Veganuary program sets out to make it easy to go vegan and, more importantly, stay vegan.