Sidebar: In order to shorten this article, I have previously posted the interview with Tracye McQuirter. Click on her name to go to the article.
Tell me about Plant the Power.
Plant the power was started in 2019. I was seeking community. I transitioned to being plant based in 2017. I wanted it to be a space that felt safe for black and brown communities to explore and to ask questions and to be in community with one another. Prior to me transitioning, I felt like veganism and plant-based lifestyles seemed like a white thing. That is what I saw on the media. It seems like it was really expensive. The more I educated myself, I found out that wasn’t true. It completely transformed my life. I felt better. I felt healthier. Knowing how it influenced the environment and things like that. I wanted to make sure that more black and brown communities knew about that. I started in 2019 focused on creating that safe space. We do a mix of social gatherings where we come together and eat some good food, go to different vegan restaurants in the city, and educational events, documentary film screenings, book club discussions, just community conversations. We want people to be able to learn and connect in the community.
How do you find out about the events? Instagram and Facebook @plantthepower614. We recently launched our website: www.plantthepower.com. There, you can put your email address in, and you will receive our regular newsletters
Educate me on today’s event.
We are at Plant the Power Vegfest. This is our first one. We plan to make this an annual event. All of our vendors are BIPOC (Black Indigenous People of Color). We were intentional about wanting to highlight BIPOC owned businesses who were fully plant based or at least offered plant-based products. We wanted our performers and speakers to make sure this was a festival that was for the culture, for us. They represented us where we could see ourselves. We took a bit of a pause during the pandemic. This is our launching back up again to start having more gatherings and meet ups.
Is there anything that I didn’t ask you that you think I should have asked you? If so, go ahead and answer that question.
This space is for anybody. If you feel like you want to completely transition to plant-based, or maybe you just want to learn, if you want to try meatless Monday, etc. I think we could all benefit from eating more fruits and veggies. There is not judgement on where you are with your journey. If you are thinking, “I ain’t trying to go vegan. I’m a foodie. I just want some good food.” That’s fine. If you want to learn, we want to be that safe space for you to learn and ask those questions. Not often do we feel like we can be in a space and ask questions, without feeling like I shouldn’t have asked that. That is what we are here for. Come learn. Come ask questions. Come connect in community. Come eat some good food.
Tasha: You mentioned you are considering becoming a vegan. What’s up?
I need to do a lifestyle change. Unfortunately, I have some minor health issues that I know stem from eating whatever, whenever. I have been thinking about making a change for years. I just got back in the country Thursday night. I decided to come out to learn some things and get some things. I’m glad that I came. I got to see my fellow Puncher (Mifflin High School Alumni). I love the farmer markets, the information and literature. I’m excited about this barbeque jack slider. Supporting black business is always a great thing for me.
DJ O Sharp: If I want to buy something and I don’t want to make it, where are the places that I should go around Columbus?
In the North Market: Willowbeez SoulVeg, Somalia Cuisine (Hoyo’s Kitchen),
Cuisine of India (Flavors of India). Lifestyle Café is on 189th and Oak. Loving Hut is on Brice.
Sidebar: During our conversation, O Sharp made this comment, “We are looking for fuel, we are not looking for taste. Don’t worry about what it tastes like, what is it going to do for your body? You are a whole machine. Put good fuel in so you can do what you need to do in the best capacity.” Hmmmmn…. I have to think about that a little more.