Protest Exotic Animal Rides at the Minnesota Ren Fest

21106839_10159154202190487_3771599097693476893_nJoin us on Sunday, September 10 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.for a peaceful and legal protest of the exotic animal rides at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival. Help us educate the public about why they should skip these rides and instead enjoy the activities that don’t hurt animals.

Many people who jump at the chance to get close to animals by buying exotic animal rides probably wouldn’t if they knew about the suffering the animals endure. The violence that goes into training animals used for rides isn’t seen by the public because the owners of these operations know that people would be enraged if they knew how the animals are beaten into submission. Elephants have to be made so frightened of the bull hook the handler carries that they will behave in front of spectators.

These animals are trucked around the country from site to site in small trailers or trucks. In the wild, they have extensive social networks and travel miles on foot every day. But when they’re sentenced to being amusement park rides they plod in boring circles day after day with hundreds of pounds of their back, for hour upon boring uncomfortable hour.

The MN Ren Fest continues to feature these rides, despite their parent company having discontinued the elephant rides at its Kansas City Ren Fest. Please take the time to comment on the Ren Fest Facebook page.

Photo by Captured by Brooke Photography at this year’s MN Ren Fest. As one of the elephants was begging for water, the handler poked her with his bull hook and gave her a Coke.

Animal Rights & Human Rights: A Plea for Solidarity

20840655_1406828989353790_4311141407366042039_nby Guest blogger Kingsley Manfredo

It is the proclaimed position of many animal rights activists that compassion has no boundaries. We feel that our daily struggle against speciesism on behalf of oppressed animals is a moral imperative. We protest, we demonstrate, we march, and we change the way we live our lives to serve as inspiration to others to embrace their values. We want to create a world wherein justice for all includes fur, fins, and feathers.

But what about justice for oppressed humans?

Protest “Extreme Race Day” at Canterbury Park

19665491_10154796630782825_4229268385708275908_nEach year Canterbury Park in Shakopee, MN adds “extreme” races to its usual lineup of horse racing, proclaiming “It’s a real zoo! Camel, Ostrich, and Zebra races!” Join the Animal Rights Coalition to protest this ridiculous exploitative event on Saturday July 15, from noon to 2:00 p.m. Let’s use our voices to peacefully show Canterbury and its patrons that we don’t believe animals should be used as entertainment, exotic or otherwise. Signs will be provided, but feel free to bring your own.

We will protest at the intersection of Canterbury Road and 12th Ave, across the street from McDonalds. This is a high traffic area as it is where folks will come off 169 to head into the park and there are many businesses nearby.

Virtual Reality at Pride

Pride - couple doing VRWe had such a wonderful weekend at the Twin Cities Pride Festival. We handed out nearly 3,000 pieces of literature on animal rights and veganism AND debuted our Virtual Reality Pay Per View to huge success. So many great eye opening conversations about how animals raised for food are treated and how switching to a plant-based diet is good for the animals, your health, and the environment. This couple watched the videos together. It was inspiring to see them support each other in making positive changes.

Packing Plant-Based Food for Children

VegKins_Feed My Starving Children_packing plant based food for HaitiWe had a great group of families from ARC’s VegKins program at the recent Feed My Starving Children event in Eagan, Minnesota. VegKins families packed plant-based food for children desperately in need. It was a rewarding experience for all.

Take Action Today! Shut Down Animal Exhibiting at Dakota County Fur Farm

Wolf PupsFor years, Fur-Ever Wild in Eureka Township, Minnesota has operated as a petting zoo and fur farm, with the owners breeding animals, exhibiting them for a fee, and then slaughtering them for their fur (according to previous statements by the business).

A court ruling last year found that Fur-Ever Wild’s petting zoo operation violated local ordinances, and the animal exhibition part of the business was shut down. So we were surprised to learn that Fur-Ever Wild is now advertising “volunteer” positions, which require a fee, to hold and feed animals. It seems the new “volunteer” program is an attempt to sidestep the law and continue profiting by selling contact with the animals in addition to their fur.

Minnesota residents, we need your help to urge the Dakota County Sheriff, Dakota County Attorney, and Eureka Township Board to uphold the law and shut down this activity. Fill out the Animal Legal Defense Fund form to tell officials to shut it down!

Cuddle Coats Prep Session and Grill Out

Baby beavers with their Cuddle CoatsJoin the Animal Rights Coalition in helping orphaned and injured wild animals through our Cuddle Coats program. Every week we receive donated fur coats from the public, and volunteers prep and ship the coats to our wildlife rehabilitation center partners all across the U.S, where they’re used to help animals like these baby beavers snuggling in their donated Cuddle Coats. Prepping the coats involves removing buttons and fasteners, cutting out labels and linings, etc. All supplies are provided. We suggest wearing something you don’t mind getting a bit fuzzy.

Following cleanup, we’ll grill veggie burger patties and buns. Veggie burgers and buns will be provided, but please bring some burger toppings you enjoy. Event is at the ARC office, co-located with Ethique Nouveau, 317 W 48th St. in Minneapolis on Sunday, May 21 from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

RSVP on Vegan Meetup or the Facebook event.

ARC Speaker Series: Former Political Prisoner Daniel McGowan

If a Tree FallsCOMMITTED TO THE STRUGGLE: Former Political Prisoner Daniel McGowan on Repression and Radical Activism under Trump

Daniel McGowan is a social justice activist from NYC whose arrest and conviction for “eco-terrorism” in 2005 became a flashpoint in the Green Scare repression of environmental and animal rights activist communities. His story is the focus of the Academy Award nominated documentary film If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front (2011). (A free screening of the film will be held several weeks before the talk).

Daniel will be speaking about his own personal history and sharing novel approaches to movement building and radical activism under the Trump administration.

This free talk is Friday, May 12 at 7:00-9:00 PM at Walker United Methodist Church, 3104 16th Ave. S in Minneapolis. Childcare will be provided. The space is wheelchair accessible (via a ramp), and American Sign Language interpretation will be available.

Brought to you by the Animal Rights Coalition with support from the Anti-War Committee, Communities United Against Police Brutality, Minnesota Animal Liberation, MN Committee to Stop FBI Repression, National Lawyers Guild (MN Branch), Progress for Science Minnesota, and Support Vegans in the Prison System.