Philly Gala for the Humane Leaque

I was recently invited to attend the Philly Gala - A celebration for the Animals hosted by The Humane League - Philadelphia Chapter. The location of the event was at the Goldilocks Gallery - neighboring the Philadelphia Union Trust building.

This was my first time to this particular venue but found it to be a nice little gem tucked into a corner of Philadelphia's pockets. While it was a bit on the "chilly" side for me - most attendees found the temperature to be comfortable.

I arrived early and found it to be a bit on the hectic side. In a private room, attendees were enjoying their VIP dinner by Vegan Chef Lenka, while additional volunteers seemed a bit scrambled to set up the donated vegan appetizers, light meals, and desserts.

I gladly jumped in and offered my assistance. As a team, the tables were displayed and everything was ready for their general admission guests 7:00pm arrival.

In review, of how the tables were arranged, I could see that there was clearly some gluten free options BUT they were unfortunately mixed in with non-gluten-free items (such as pizza, field roast skewers, pasta and so on), so I made the decision to skip on all of the LOVELY donated vegan delicacies. I was definitely a bit bummed because the food looked and smelled amazing and some of the dishes were donated from some local Philadelphia establishments that I have been meaning to try (magic carpet foods, vegan commissionary, ...) Such is the life of a gluten free vegan gal and you get used to not being able to enjoy all the abundances with others and you come prepared to feed yourself.
While I made my way around to the back and found a microwave to heat up my oatmeal, I had the opportunity to meet and talk with Chef Lenka herself. In our discussion, I had noted that I was both gluten free and vegan and had to bring my own dish to prepare as a means to avoid any cross-contamination. Chef Lenka said, "no no no, I make you something. I have some gluten-free and vegan butternut squash risotto, you like?" Do I like?! Are you kidding me,
yes I like! Chef Lenka made me a rather large portion size ( I came to find out, it was actually a larger portion that those that had attended her private VIP dinner) for me and I dove right in!

We all know - since I make a lot of gluten-free vegan dishes for myself, I tend to be disappointed in the execution in most others' dishes - well, Chef Lenka is amazing and I couldn't stop shoving this risotto into my mouth! It was amazing! So creamy! So flavorful! It is definitely a dish I will continue to remember. I was beyond honored and I look forward to visiting Chef Lenka again in the near future!

I managed to find my way back to the event where I met a couple of people here and there. I spent my time engaging in conversations and found that overall, people are looking for a network of individuals who share their same beliefs. While Philadelphia is amping up their vegan options, they are still looking for more venues that cater to both vegans and non-vegans so that they don't feel so "isolated" from the remainder of the world.

To me, it was interesting to hear the guests discuss these concerns, because as a gluten-free, vegan, I find it very isolating at times and didn't even consider that others might also be joining me in this feeling.

The event was well attended and I think it allowed many participants the network of like-minded individuals they are so eager to find. Thanks to the Humane League for providing this media for all to connect.

While it was a great networking opportunity, this event was also an educational and charitable event. Attendees had the opportunity to listen to the guest speaker, Jack Griffin, President of Metropolis Farms, Philadelphia, PA. The Metropolis Farm is the first certified vegan farm in the US. Please make your way over to their website or this great philly article to learn more.

I truly enjoyed my time speaking with David Coman-Hidy, Executive Director of the Humane League and found it inspiring how young and passionate he is.You can see his actions inspire the entire team and essentially, he is the engine of this entire locomotive.

Additionally, it was a pleasure getting to know Michelle Kucerak, Director of Development, and Rachel Black, Philadelphia Grassroots Director.

Overall, I would say this event was a successful one at that and it certainly has me wondering, how I can become more involved on a personal level. If you too question this, check out their "Get Involved" section.


  1. This place was very comfortable. Restrooms were decent. Coming here with my friends was an amazing experience. This is among my favorite event venues now, because of its excellent food, perfect lighting, vibrant atmosphere and great ventilation.


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