Atlantic City Vegan Food Festival brings Harley Quinn Smith home to NJ

by Alex Biese

This summer, Atlantic City is going green.

The second annual Atlantic City Vegan Food Festival comes to the Showboat Hotel Friday, July 12 through Sunday, July 14.

This year’s celebration of the vegan lifestyle — which uses no animal products — will be headlined by a talk from actress and activist Harley Quinn Smith.

Smith, the star of “Yoga Hosers” featured in Quentin Tarantino’s July 26 release “Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood,” will appear in on-stage conversation with Alex Biese, features reporter for the USA TODAY NETWORK New Jersey and the Asbury Park Press.

The Red Bank-born Smith also happens to be the daughter of Highlands-native filmmaker, author, podcaster and fellow vegan Kevin Smith.

Here’s the full schedule for this year’s festival:

Friday, July 12

2 to 10 p.m.: Vegan Food Truck Festival and Vegan Sports and Fitness Expo (members and volunteers can enter at 1 p.m.)
Saturday, July 13

7:30 a.m.: Boardwalk 5K race
11 a.m. to 6 p.m.: Atlantic City Vegan Food Festival (members and volunteers can enter at 10 a.m.)
12 p.m.: Vegan speed dating (hetero session)
12 p.m.: “The Bearded Vegans” live podcast recording
1 p.m.: Vegan speed friending
1 p.m.: “VeganzDaHood” live podcast recording
2 p.m.: Vegan fashion show
3 p.m.: Vegan speed dating (LGBTQ session)
3 p.m.: Ari Solomon live podcast recording
4 p.m.: Vegan speed dating (hetero session)
4 p.m.: Vegan and Trans: Navigating and Creating space, Visibility and Support in the Movement panel discussion and live podcast recording moderated by Alex Biese of the USA TODAY NETWORK New Jersey and the Asbury Park Press
5 p.m.: Vegan fashion show
5:30 p.m.: Harley Quinn Smith, keynote speaker in conversation with Alex Biese
8 p.m.: After-party at the Spirit Bar (free entry for members and volunteers)
Sunday, July 14

7:30 a.m.: Dog walk
11 a.m.: Vegan brunch
General admission tickets are $8 for the food truck festival and $15 for the food festival if purchased in advance and $10 for the food truck festival, $20 for the good festival on the day of the event. Kids ages 13 and under are free.

For tickets and more information, visit

The organizers of the Atlantic City Vegan Food Festival will present a vegan pop-up shop 11 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 18 at Convention Hall in Asbury Park and the New Jersey VegFest Saturday, Nov. 16 and Sunday, Nov. 17 at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus.

For tickets and information on all of these events, visit

Originally published in the Asbury Park Press.

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