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VegFest 2023

Michelle Sinnott 

Director and Counsel of Captive Animal Law Enforcement at PETA

Animal Advocate's Toolkit

Practical Tips and Resources for Protecting Animals in Your Community – Do you know what to do if you see someone abusing a dog? Or what if someone posts something on Next Door about a dog, chained up outside 24/7? Michelle will talk through various everyday scenarios that we could be confronted with and will share tips on how to act most effectively to help animals in those situations and how to find local resources you need.

Dr. Natalie Wiggins

Licensed Naturopathic Doctor

Benefits of a Plant-Based Lifestyle

Dr. Wiggins is a licensed Naturopathic doctor practicing general family medicine. She treats a wide variety of conditions using naturopathic modalities. She compassionately leads patients to health through comprehensive individualized care that focuses on identifying and correcting underlying disruptions of health that can lead to disease. She facilitates intentional change through education and earned trust, and achieves positive outcomes through unique treatment plans. 

Chef Stef

Cooking With Passion

Cooking Demos

With a Le Cordon Bleu 2015 graduation under my toque, I've embarked on a journey seasoned by global flavors, from the streets of Paris to the markets of Central America, and the shores of Hawaii. My recent certification in wine tasting through Le Cordon Paris Oenology summer Program 2023 has refined my palate, allowing me to appreciate the intricate symphony of flavors in every sip. When I'm not immersed in culinary exploration, I'm embracing the ethos of "Aloha" infusing each creation with a touch of warmth and harmony. Join me in savoring the artistry of food and the delight of discovery.

Alex Bayer

Mindful Movement:

Yoga w/ Breathwork and Gentle Poses

After 3 years of self-discovery and transformation through YouTube yoga, I studied Vinyasa, Hatha, and Shamanism in Peru in 2019 at the Yoga Institute. In early 2023, I made the voyage to India to study Hatha and Ashtanga. Yoga has taught me to be curious, to love myself, all beings, life and to have fun! And, to always Embrace all the mysteries in life as they are an inclusive part of our story.
I become more like my intrinsic self every day. Before this practice became my lifestyle, I didn't exercise and had a bad diet. Yoga helped me overcome the numbness I experienced as a human and is helping me attune to and strengthen my body, mind, and spirit. I am focused on what is important to me: bringing holistic, healing awareness to the world and its people; allowing me to operate through what lives in my heart, my soul, my consciousness. 
We come to yoga to find appreciation, mindfulness, grounding, and Gratitude for what we are, exactly as we are: metaphysically speaking.

Dr. Cameron O'Connell

Licensed Naturopathic Doctor


Women's Health 

Dr O’Connell, ND, FABNE is a primary care doctor with a specialty in naturopathic endocrinology. Her practice encompasses a wide variety of conditions and she loves working with people from diverse backgrounds. 

Having completed her residency at TrueNorth Health Center, she saw the benefit of a plant-based diet in action and employs it in her practice on a daily basis.

Winona Benson

Nourished Health

Coaching Services

The 100+ Wellness Journey 

What if you ate only foods produced within a 100-mile circumference of your home? What would your diet consist of? How could your body benefit from eating locally produced foods? What specific nutritional benefits would those foods provide? What would you have to give up? 
The inspiration for this talk comes from a young couple, Alisa Smith and James MacKinnon. They learned these lessons when they decided to launch a simple experiment to reconnect with the people and places that produced what they ate. For one year, they would only consume food that came from within a 100-mile radius of their Vancouver apartment. This was how the original 100-Mile Diet was born. 

Join Winona Benson as she takes us on an extended journey, expanding the concept of the 100-mile radius. Learn about the health benefits as we focus on the wide variety of our Alaska-grown vegetables, from Fairbanks to Homer.

Lisa Elayne

Healing Circle and

Sakred Space

During our time together, we will open our sacred ceremony with Eskimo drumming with Calvin Rodgers of Kingikmiut Dance Group followed by the opening of the four directions. You will have time to meditate on what you desire to bring forth for healing.
We will be guided into sound healing with Chris Loescher of Ak Sound Healing. During the sound healing, I will be offering Reiki and traditional energy healing during the sound healing to hold sacred space for you. We will complete with sacred smoke cleanse and closing of the four directions and prayer

Michelle Frye

Chair Yoga

We sit. We breathe. We stretch. We move. May you never sit in a chair the same way, may you get creative the next time you find yourself sitting, on a plane, at a desk, around a campfire, or watching a movie. We sit a lot. Let’s make it dynamic, let’s get curious, let’s get comfortable.

Michelle has been a curator of movement for several years. Gaining experiences through life lessons, self-studies, and hours of teacher training. She has been a guide in the arts of aerial yoga, chair yoga, vinyasa yoga, trauma-informed yoga, and yin yoga as well as a spin cycle and aerobic instructor. Each practice has a piece that has helped her develop a voice and a story of movement. Her intention is to help bring awareness back into the body, and get out of the limiting thoughts of the mind, so that you are heard, felt, seen; and validated by the self. As a seeker, she is exploring ways to help connect with Ultimate Love. Whether it’s time in nature, dancing in her kitchen, or finding the sacred moments in everyday life. Her style ever evolves as she does and believes that movement can be found in everybody and that yoga shouldn’t be intimidating.

Dr. Owen Mandans

Holistic Dentist 


Dr. Owen Mandanas is Anchorage’s happiest and most curious, holistic dentist. She is the founder of Live, Breathe, Alaska- an educational company [community?]that was created to share, teach and empower Alaskans to live well!

Farmers Panel 

  • Rob Wells - President of the Farmers Union 

  • Jennifer Sharrock - Seeds and Soil Farm

  • Josh Smith - AK Plant Guy

  • Nick Riordan - Yarducopa 

  • Erica Lujan - Blue Market 

We're thrilled to present a remarkable Farmer's Panel, featuring five outstanding local farmers, growers, and buyers.This is your chance to connect directly with our community's agricultural experts. Join us for insightful discussions spanning access, cultivation insights, the benefits of supporting local growers, and a diverse array of pertinent subjects. This is an invaluable opportunity to engage in direct dialogue with the very individuals nurturing the food we enjoy. 
Don't miss out!

Alex Bury

Vegan Outreach

Vegan 101 

Alex will delve into Vegan 101, offering insights on making a seamless transition to a vegan lifestyle. Additionally, she will share some simple, delicious recipes that you can easily recreate in the comfort of your own home. Don't miss out on this opportunity to learn from a seasoned expert in vegan living! You can catch her at cooking demo station 2 at 1:15 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. 

Alex was trained as a classical (non-vegetarian) chef at the world-renowned Culinary Institute of America. In 2001, she opened a restaurant in California called Sparks with an entirely plant-based menu. Sparks quickly became well-known for its outstanding food, even among non-vegans. Alex is now a professional fundraiser and serves as Vice President of Development for the international organization Vegan Outreach. When she’s not raising money to change how animals are treated she jumps back into the kitchen: She has taught healthy cooking techniques and recipes at Whole Foods Market, for the McDougall Program (a nationally renowned preventative health program), and for local groups and companies since 2000. Alex is now based in Anchorage, Alaska, where she enjoys pancakes with wild Alaska blueberries and searching for the best soy cappuccino in the 49th state!

Katie Jansen

Power Flow Yoga


Power Flow Yoga is an energetic form of yoga where students fluidly move from one pose to the next while connecting breath to movement. We will weave strength, flexibility, balance, and physical as well as mental stamina into one powerful session.

Katie Jansen, a 200hr Registered Yoga Teacher based in Palmer, AK is dedicated to sharing the transformative practice of Power Yoga with beginner and advanced yogis alike. With a deep belief in the power of mindfulness and embracing divine energy, or shakti, Katie empowers her students to thrive in their everyday lives. As a devoted wife, mother of three, and psychology student, she brings a unique perspective to her classes, creating a supportive space for personal growth. Join Katie in cultivating strength, balance, and mindfulness as you embark on a journey of self-discovery and empowerment!

“Shakti is the part of your practice and your life that you can FEEL. It's the Energy, the Fire, the Power. It's the tingling in your arms and the beating of your heart that reminds you that you're alive.”


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