Pittsburgh VegFest, the annual summer festival with the mission of advocating for animals and vegan food, took place in Allegheny Commons Park on Aug. 10.

Photos by Ashlee Green

Vegan food and baked goods, clothing and books, art and crafts were available for purchase at the fifth annual free festival. In addition to the pets of festival-goers, there were a couple of Great Pyrenees dogs representing The Great Pyrenees Club of Western Pennsylvania, two pigs with Pittsburgh Squealers Rescue, and a green-winged macaw named Emily from Heart & Soul Parrot Rescue in West Mifflin. Jessica Gilpin of Heart & Soul said that many people buy parrots on a whim and don’t realize how much work they can take to raise.

“They’re like toddlers for life,” said Gilpin, who works at the rescue. That’s where the parrot rescue comes in. Heart and Soul takes in parrots from people who relinquish them, rehomes the birds, and educates the public about “proper parrot care.”

Pittsburgh VegFest is hosted by Justice for Animals, a Pittsburgh-based nonprofit organization that advocates for animal welfare and sustainable living.

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