Saturday, June 26, 2010

Summer Camp

My baby leaves for sleep away camp in less twelve hours! Okay, so he's not a baby-baby anymore, but OMG! Aside from the usual separation anxiety issues, we vegans have the extra special crap to think about - FOOD FOOD FOOD! What else do vegans think about?

Okay, so maybe I am a little stressed.Two months ago, I called around to different sleep away camps, to see if any of them could accommodate a vegan diet. The one we decided on was super nice - they said they always have a vegetarian option, that is primarily vegan. AWESOME! I spoke with the person in charge of menu planning, and she gave me some examples of options, all that sounded good.

I've mentioned the  insane food planning vegans must succumb to, right?? Two weeks ago, I called  to get the exact menu for the week D would be there. I wanted to be able to go over it with him before he got there, so he was comfortable knowing what was and was not vegan. Then I sent a follow up email. And waited. And waited. And.... waited. Grrrr!

A week later, I was informed the person doing food planning had changed. After many frustrating calls (using care to be super nice, so as to not be labeled the crazy vegan and so cheese isn't accidentally sneaked into his food) I FINALLY got the menu (end of business day Friday - he leaves Sunday morning!). Hummmm...... not many veggie options..... even less vegan ones!

After emails and phone calls, the end result is that it should be no problem. I am packing some special foods for him (vegan cheese  for pizza night and Dandies for s'mores!)

I sent the coordinator a final email, thanking him for his patience and accommodations. And..... I may have added a line about it being worrisome to send off a kid with "such severe food allergies, who is also vegan". While D does have allergies, I may have over-emphasized it.... just a little! As I've written before, sometimes this  little white lie does have it's place in the vegan world!


  1. I totally agree about saying you've got food allergies. We went on a cruise for our honeymoon and I got so tired of explaining to the waitstaff what I did eat that I finally started saying "I don't eat meat and I'm allergic to dairy and eggs." I also find that some people are more accommodating when a food allergy is involved than when it's viewed as just a choice not to eat something.

  2. Thanks Maida! I'm glad to know I'm not the only one! You're totally right, people are way more receptive and even nicer when they think it's a requirement, not a choice. Hopefully, more people will start seeing veganism as important as an allergy, or religious food preference, etc. sooner rather than later!

  3. Hi there! I just stumbled across your post in doing a google search and wanted to make sure you are aware of Youth Empowered Action (YEA) Camp, which is 100% vegan and is a week-long sleep-away camp for teens who want to make a difference in the world, with sessions near Portland, OR, San Fran, and New Jersey.