Sunday, September 26, 2010
a visit to poplar spring animal sanctuary
Some friends invited me out to visit the Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary in Poolesville, Maryland for their thirteenth annual open house fundraiser today. It turned out to be a beautiful day, somewhat overcast and finally feeling like Autumn. I'm so glad I was able to make this event, since I've never had the pleasure of visiting this wonderful place yet. The animal sanctuary is nonprofit and one of only about a dozen currently existing in the United States, housing roughly 200 various rescued animals from throughout the country. What a joy it was to see cows, goats, chickens, and many other types of farm animals, once abandoned, neglected or abused, roaming free and happily on such a spacious, natural plot of land. From what I gathered, the place has been attracting record turnouts to their events lately, and I've got a feeling this one was no exception, as folks kept piling on in as the day progressed. Highlights included a very informative and engaging speech by author, activist and scientist Jonathan Balcombe, who recently published Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good, as well as some marvelous free food from local vegan hotspot Java Green, and finally some mouthwatering sweets from the award-winning Sticky Fingers bakery. They also had a silent auction, which I plan on contributing some artwork to next year. It was nice to see such a great turnout on such a pleasant, Autumn day - another indicator that people are slowly but surely learning of the multitude of positive benefits which arise from a vegetarian or vegan diet, and the harsh, grim realities behind the meat industry and industrial factory farming. Here's looking to next year's open house!