Saturday, February 25, 2006

The Jacksonville News Covers Our Jacksonville Stop

Read all about it at

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Asheville, SC: Another Awesome Group of Activists

The sun was out but the wind made the 40 degrees feel like freezing. Thankfully, we had plenty of activists to keep me pumped up about being in the cold. Seven people came out, many of whom have been holding down demos at KFC on a regular basis.

The KFC seemed dead and five employees watched us from the window for the majority of the demo. The store manager, Duwayne, even hung out to see what we were up to. Matt spoke to him as we wrapped up the demo and he said KFC could probably do something to work with us.

Spartansburg, SC: Officer Makes Strange Demand

Our demo location was right next to a car wash so we had many of their employees come over to talk to us. Some people driving by stopped to see what the protest was all about. This KFC wasn't very busy so there weren't many cars to leaflet coming out of the drive thru.

When an officer pulled up on the sidewalk and walked over to us I expected to hear the usual guidelines: no stopping cars in traffic and no going on KFC property. However, Officer Tanner proceeded to tell us that we must leave KFC property and take our demo across the street. When Lindsay mentioned the sidewalk being public property, he said we were causing a disturbance. Matt started to film and asked him to tell us which law we were violating. He could only repeat that we were a disturbance. When Matt asked if we could contact someone in charge, he said he was in charge. We knew that it was our right to demonstrate on the sidewalk so we asked him what would happen if we didn't leave. All he said was that he would be back.

Lindsay stood aside with him for a few minutes and assured him that she called to clear our demo and asked if we needed a permit. He left, we assumed to check his facts.

We continued to protest for our entire scheduled time and he did not return. I felt as if he thought his position of authority would make asking us to leave easy.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Bowling Green, KY: Activists Come Out in Full Force

Over the course of the demonstration, ten activists joined up with us. Two young people saw us and came over spontaneously. It was really impressive, especially since it was a small location with no sidewalk. We had every media outlet in town taking photos and doing interviews.

I can't express how awesome it is to meet up with fellow activists and see them network with each other. For most of them it was there first protest. Coming out to join PETA helped them meet each other and start their community. Many of them will be doing first Saturday demos. I am really proud of each and every one of them!

Owensboro, KY: Sympathetic Hunters

A photographer and reporter from the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer were at KFC to meet us as we arrived to set up. A radio host from 97x (97.1 FM) also came out even though his radio show was over.

We attracted a couple hunters who heckled us for the entire time we were out there. At the end of the demo, Matt went to talk to them they received his words kindly. They thanked us for being peaceful and having a good sense of humor and, after speaking with Matt, agreed that what we are asking of KFC is reasonable.

Again, all of the police on duty hung out to watch us. There were about five cars. They all seemed interested to watch the DVD I gave one of the officers.

Article in The Jackson Sun

Here's an interesting article in The Jackson Sun.

Demonstration featured on Current TV

Check it out!

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Jackson, TN: District Manager is Snap Happy

Before we even started the KFC employees were telling us to leave. We assured them we could demonstrate on the sidewalk. I hope the employees will look into how KFC could improve and put some pressure on them.

The district manager came out and took a lot of pictures. I tried to get him to come speak to me but instead he stood up by the building and I shouted to him. I asked him if he knew what we were asking of KFC and if he had been to the website. He said he had looked into it. I said, surely you feel the chickens deserve better and that KFC can make changes. He shrugged and nodded at the same time. He said he would rather focus on human issues, like homelessness and child abuse.

People should realize that respect for non-human beings breeds respect for self and for others.

Memphis, TN: Met Former Rochestarian

The temperature slowly climbed from 38-41 degrees over the course of our hour demonstration and sun even peaked out. We were joined by a local activist, Vaughn, who has been doing first Saturday demonstrations at the KFC. He was very enthusiastic and I found out he is originally from Rochester.

Throughout the demonstration people were stopping to talk to us. Many who were going to eat at KFC were turned off. I am glad that people see this issue as simply as I do. This industry needs a wake up call, Americans are compassionate people. Even meat eaters agree the animals should be raised in clean conditions so their bodies don't have to be pumped with drugs and when they are slaughtered it should be quick and with as little pain as possible.

One lady rubbed her belly and said "yum, yum" as she entered the restaurant. I wished her a better meal than a tortured, defenseless animal who was kept alive through the use of pharmaceuticals. As consumers we can demand better of the wealthy corporations that serve us.

A Post on the Arkansas Times blog

Here's a post about our demo on the Arkansas Times blog called "By popular demand: Fowl weather gear." Some of the comments are quite funny, others a litle strange . . .

Monday, February 20, 2006

Jonesboro, AR: Stopping Traffic

The temperature was 28 when we rolled up to demonstrate. We picked up some extra gloves and hand warmers before going out. Lindsay and I agreed that we should do this one in shifts again, so I prepared for the first half hour.

On our way to set up, the property manager was already making a fuss. He was very clear about where his property began and where we could be. He stayed outside for our entire demo.

We attracted a large group of people who just stood on the hill above us and watched. Some of them ate chicken parts, some of them yelled and joked at us but most of them were just in awe that people were demonstrating. It must be a really new thing in this area.

A few young people came down from the hill to join us. One was recently fired from KFC and was telling us how disgusting the restaurant and their food is. Another mentioned that PETA's campaign for lobsters who are boiled alive really moved him. They protested with us until the property manager threatened to tow their cars.

All the attention slowed the traffic coming in and out of the strip mall so the police had to start directing the cars. The officers were very polite and even seemed a bit frustrated with the property manager because he was making so many requests.

As usual the camera phones and digital cameras were snapping all around. The media was there to capture everything, even a photographer from the Associated Press. I can't believe that wearing a bikini in the dead of winter helps move the message. The abuse of chickens is so prevalent, I am glad that we are able to draw such attention.

As usual one guy approached me to tear down our reason for demonstrating. When I explained Controlled Atmosphere Killing he knew that we had clear goals for KFC and he nodded in agreement.

Days like this are so inspiring. We spoke to so many people and gave them a reason to consider the chicken they are eating. I am so thankful to be on the road for this!

Little Rock, AR: Five Police Cars

Our demonstration was successful, we sent many people away and spread the word to many others. We were joined by three area activists, including one who had a very nice sign professionally made for the occasion. Meeting local activists is still my favorite part about the demos.

There wasn't much going on around Little Rock must of been because five police cars parked in a nearby lot. They were there for the majority of the demo and about ten minutes before we were to finish, they finally came out to say something. They mentioned us needing a permit and voiced concern about us stopping cars due to the icy roads.

We wrapped up as planned and I couldn't believe I did another hour and fifteen minutes in such cold weather. It was about 23 degrees but I toughed it out for the chickens. People really stop because of the bikini and are respectful of my willingness to stand in the cold for my beliefs.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Alexandria, LA

Our hotel was right next to this location and our room had a balcony over looking the drive thru. It was almost too perfect.

The local newspaper wrote a blurb about our demonstration and brought three first time activists to us.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Baton Rouge, LA: Tortured Chick Goes Into KFC

The heat wave was over I quickly realized as I took my long coat off to start the demo. A refreshing 30 some degrees really reminds me why I am wearing earmuffs.

We were joined by four area activists who had never demonstrated before. We had every picture sign out, making for a really impressive protest. They decided they would start doing first Saturday demos at this location.

This was another KFC/Taco Bell restaurant. I stood by the drive thru entrance to stop cars on their way in and out. I sent a few cars coming in away by leafletting and telling them about KFC's cruelty. The cars exiting were mostly eating Taco Bell so I was able to thank them for already joining the boycott.

No police came over to speak to us but we did see a few drive by. Since the restaurant employees didn't seem to mind our demo, Lindsay and I decided that I would go in and hand the workers leaflets and DVDs. The lady taking orders shot me a bewildered look and walked away. The manager quickly came and asked us to turn off our camera and leave. I left the information asking them politely to look it over and wished them a good day.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Mobile, AL: Running Through the Sprinklers

We had high hopes that some activists would join us but nobody came. That is okay though, we brought the ruckus like we always do. This location was a combination Taco Bell/ KFC so it had a lot of traffic. The businesses across the street had people hanging out in front watching us. Some of them came over to chat and grab a DVD.

One couple parked in the KFC lot and came right over to talk to us. It seemed as if they had heard that we were going to be protesting. The lady said she didn't want to hear it because she loves fried chicken. The gentleman stopped to talk about what he had seen on the website. He felt that KFC firing the employees caught on tape stomping live animals should be sufficient in ending the cruelty. I encouraged him to look into the website further to see what standards we are asking KFC to adopt. He asked me if I had a sense of humor, to which I replied yes. He asked if his wife could have a picture with me while she held her KFC bag. I told him I would take the picture if he promised to watch the DVD and look at the website again. He said he would.

The best reactions were from the people driving by. A busload of children saw the scalded alive sign and screamed in repulsion. Many people wanted leaflets and some had definitely seen us on the news. I had a few cars yell, "Hey, I saw you on TV".

CBS 5 came out to cover our demo but left before the most hilarious part. About half way through the restaurant turned their sprinklers on. Obviously in response to us leafletting the cars coming into the drive. I just stood there while they sprayed me. After all, I was wearing a bikini.

A manager and another employee stood outside and watched us until we wrapped up. When we walked to our car across the street, the manager, Pam, came over to get our license plate number. She wanted to know who we were. Lindsay was happy to give her card since the license plate was on rental car. She was taking our presence very personally. We tried to tell her that it wasn't about her or her store. She said that anytime we stop dollars from going in her door then it is personal. Lindsay encouraged her to write a letter or call to voice her concern. She seemed unsatisfied but did expect that we would be back next year.

Lindsay wants to find activists to do first Saturday demos at this location.

Pensacola, FL: Awesome Activists

The bright spot to our time in Florida was definitely meeting the four activists who came to the demo. Three of them were first time demonstrators and that is always exciting to us. They didn't know each other before the demo so I hope they start building their activist community as a result. They were interesting in doing first Saturday of the month protests.

Overall, the demonstration went well. We were able to encourage some people to boycott KFC and others to look into the issue further. One police officer came over to give us the usual information: where KFC's property begins and not to stop cars in the drive. He mentioned that he mostly oversees protests. He had been down the road at a pro-life demonstration.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Jacksonville, AL: Police Find Bikinis Objectionable to Public

Lindsay had no expectations for press in Jacksonville so we were pleasantly surprised by the warm welcome from the local media. Radio stations came out, print media sent photographers and Jacksonville State University sent out their video crew.

The employees of surrounding fast food restaurants were very curious about our protest and came out to get some information.

We were happy the cameras were rolling when the police showed up because they weren't as keen on our display. Officer DeShon and three other officers pulled up to ask us to put on "appropriate attire". Lindsay inquired as to what he meant by that. He explained that our bikinis were objectionable to the public and that if we didn't change he would be forced to arrest us.

Lindsay agreed that we would put on something more. I remained in place with my sign, waving to the people passing. She slowly gathered our coats and walked over to the people from the media to explain what was happening. Eventually she came back over and handed me my coat. We finished the demo with our winter coats on. Boy, it was warm. I wished the police in Lynchburg or Salem would have made such a request. Down in Alabama the weather is nice enough for these bikinis.

Montgomery, AL: School Kids Join Us

Every press release we send says we will be in a bikini and earmuffs but it is starting to feel like summer. The sun was pounding down as we prepared to demo in front of the KFC in Montgomery. We decided that I would toss the earmuffs and boots and wear my silver heels.

The police didn't stop by for this demo but we could tell they were spreading the word over their radios. Every patrol car in the city must of driven by at least once.

A KFC employee, Jimmie, came out to see what why we there. I gave him a DVD and answered his questions. It seemed as if his coworkers sent him out because as he walked back into the restaurant there were a few people waiting for him.

Some school children walking by decided to protest with us for a while. One girl remarked that her mom was bringing KFC home for dinner and she wasn't going to eat it after seeing our signs. Lindsay tried to speak to three curious children and realized they spoke Spanish. Luckily, she can speak Spanish and we had Spanish leaflets in the car.

As we drove off, we passed Robert E. Lee High School where students were waiting for rides. It was so close to the KFC we decided to park and hand out leaflets and stickers. The students were very receptive and we handed out about 50 leaflets.

Columbus, GA: Counter Demonstrators?

We arrived at the KFC in Columbus a half hour early to find Rock 103 already set up on our turf. They had pulled their giant Hummer right up in front of the restaurant and set up a table. They were chomping on some fried chicken's legs and had a chicken statue in a KFC bucket. One of them was wearing a hat that resembled a chicken. I dare call them counter demonstrators but they were more using us to draw attention to themselves.

Either way it was bikinis versus morons. We turned more people away then they turned on. One of them was running up to the cars I was leafletting and offering a free piece of chicken. Although they said they were neutral, they were giving away CD's to anyone who bought something from the restaurant. They also were saying that they saw the footage on and thought it was terrible. It became more and more obvious they just wanted to do their radio show while watching women in bikinis. They didn't even allow Lindsay to comment on air.

I felt sorry for the poor guys. They were smoking cigarettes and eating KFC. They obviously did not care about their health, making informed decisions for themselves or encouraging the public to create positive change.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Huntsville, AL: MySpace Brings out Activists

We woke early to get a permit for this demonstration. Lindsay had been pursing it for a month but we ended up having to go to down to the station. Lindsay went in to sign the paperwork and Kitty, the receptionist, said she had checked out the website and was disgusted by what she saw.

MySpace brought out two local activists, for one it was his first demo. A bit later another young man showed up. It was his first demo as well and he was really excited. He had been teaching in the community and wanted a DVD to take back to class. I love seeing people get as psyched about activism as I do.

The KFC was pretty busy but people stopped to speak to us. Around here many people have worked in the plants where they slaughter the birds. A couple ladies came to speak to me and agreed that the way they breed and drug the birds isn't good for chickens or humans. Although they felt it was unhealthy, they still went in to eat.

When we wrapped up the demo and walked to the car with our new activist friends, the police showed up. They wanted to check the permit, which was nice seeming as it took a lot of effort to get. The demo was over though, so it was a bit late. The police reacted humorously to the bikinis in Huntsville, but that wasn't the case at our next stop.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Chattanooga, TN: Protest or Street Party?

When we first scoped out the KFC location we were a bit nervous that our lingerie would attract the wrong sort of attention. Luckily, three local activists joined us. These lovely ladies have been protesting KFC the first Saturday of each month. They helped round out our attention grabbing outfits with the signs depicting birds being scalded alive and chicks having their beaks seared off.

The demonstration caught the eyes of every motorist, so much that there was a three car fender bender and a semi to drove up on the curb.

The KFC parking lot was very active with potential customers coming to speak to us before going to dine. Many people left after hearing our message. The scene looked more like a street party with everyone gathering to talk to each other. The exchange of information was intense. We handed out tons of DVDs and leaflets and even reached a few employees before they went in to start their shift.

One girl told us that we were beautiful girls but our outfits were a bit much. She felt that people may take it the wrong way. I expressed to her that I, too, had questioned the tactic before coming out to protest. I asserted that people were stopping because of the outfits and then learning of KFC's cruelty. Reaching those people who would otherwise drive by was worth it to me.

It is true that many people stopped simply because we were dressed in red lingerie. A carload of young men thought we were an advertisement. They were excited to stop and chat before going to grab some chicken. After speaking to Lindsay, they were all for boycotting KFC and got back in the car to eat elsewhere.

Knoxsville, TN: KFC Employee Expresses Support

Today we celebrate Valentine's Day by demonstrating in red lingerie. We had the support of three local activists who have been holding down the Boycott KFC campaign in Knoxsville. They were eager to join us and and are very dedicated to the campaign.
The police were circling constantly and at one point four cars were parked in the KFC lot. The four officers were just hanging out watching us for at least 20 minutes.

One KFC employee, Lynna, came out to take a DVD and express her support for us. She said we were very cute and took a Polaroid. Three men from the Knoxville Fire Department stopped by to take DVDs and and get a picture with us.

Most people who went into the KFC got leaflets and DVDs. Many people left after looking at the leaflet. One guy pulled right back out saying he "loved chicken but couldn't think of eating it now". One woman said she had promised her boyfriend KFC for lunch and had to buy it for him. She assured us that it would be her last visit to the restaurant.

A couple young men spoke to Lindsay for a bit and after hearing the news one turned to the other and said, "Want to go get some fish?"

Monday, February 13, 2006

We Make the National News!

A thumbnail-size photo of me was on the front page of Fox News, and our demo was mentioned on Fox Report w/ Shepard Smith (click to watch the video). Our first day out and so much media coverage - I'll link to more videos and articles as they become available.

The Roanoke Times

Salem, VA: KFC Closes Early

I was less anxious to rip my coat off at this location because the winds were even stronger and the temperature was around 38 degrees. I did my bikini duty for the first half and Lindsay took the second half, proving that we are quite a dynamic duo.

The press was there in full force at 2:30 sharp. The Salem Times Register and The Roanoke Times each sent a reporter with a camera. Two gentleman from WDBJ CBS 7 were there to interview Lindsay and film us. Lindsay also gave a phone interview to a reporter from The Collegiate Times of Virginia Poly Tech Institute.

About fifteen minutes after we started a young man named Sean spontaneously joined us. He said that if we would stand in the cold so scantily clad the least he could do is join us. He used to work at KFC but he quit and doesn't work in fast food anymore because he loves animals.

There were many people who stopped to ask us why they should boycott KFC. One young man I spoke to seemed surprised that I could give him such a straight answer. He stopped to hassle me for being in a bikini in the cold for a cause he deemed unworthy. He left with a DVD and a thirst for more information.

One kind lady approached me to take a DVD and said she respected me for standing up for what I believe in.

After our demo, we tried to drive thru to give the workers some information. No one came to the window, so we went to the door. To our surprise, it was locked. Funny they would close up shop on account of two ladies in bikinis. Especially since the manager told one reporter they do better business when we demonstrate.

First Stop: Lynchburg, VA

We arrived at the Lynchburg KFC a bit early but I was anxious to get started. I shed my coat to reveal the yellow bikini. Passers by were very curious so Lindsay and I immediately started to leaflet. The manager was extremely heated and threatened to call the police. We assured her we had been in contact with the police and had a permit to demonstrate.

A man was with the manager and came to question if our boots were leather. He stuck around for a bit and kept commenting that we should have something better to do and that having me in a bikini in the cold was real torture.

ABC 13 News was first on the scene to interview the two of us. They kept asking if I was cold and I kept assuring them it was nothing compared to what the chickens endure.
Some men in a car saw me shiver a bit and offered their embrace, to which I replied, "If you boycott KFC that would really warm me up!"

The police did show up to check our permit and to take some information from the two of us. The officer seemed a bit intimidated by my apparel and meekly asked if I had an ID on me.
Onlookers were excited to snap pictures with their digital cameras and phones. With all of the pictures taken by the public and the by a local photographer from The News & Advance, I would say we caught the attention we were after.

Three local activists joined us, making our demo really impressive. The support of people in each community keeps us going strong!

One gentleman approached us as we were packing up and said he raised poultry. He agreed that factory farming is bad for chickens as well as humans. He voiced a need for the public to know the conditions animals are raised in. I think our conversation put him at ease that we are out for better standards, not to shut down individual farmers like him.

We attempted to drive thru to give the KFC staff some DVDs and leaflets but a manager met us at the window. It seems to me they don't want the employees to decide for themselves.

Vegan Food on the Road

Since food is so important to me I decided our restaurant visits deserve their own entry. We have had so many chances to talk to awesome people at the restaurants we have visited and the food has been great.

Lynchburg, VA:
We drove from Norfolk to Lynchburg and before going to rest at our hotel, we enjoyed dinner at Ruby Tuesdays. Lindsay had the massive salad bar and I had a veggie burger with broccoli. Our vegan food options while on the road looked good after this stop.

Salem, VA:
We felt great about our first day of demonstrating and decided to relax for a bit. We went to Denny's to warm up with a cup of joe and use their wireless. The servers were extra sweet, they checked to see if the internet was working and refilled our coffee frequently. The restaurant was so cozy we decided to stick around for dinner. We each ordered their Boca burger and it came with a generous portion of grapes.
I am thrilled to be eating so well. I was convinced that eating at places like Denny's meant eating lots of french fries and salad. I was definitely wrong. On the menu they offered to substitute a fruit or vegetable for the usual fries, making for a much healthier and agreeable meal.
While we dined and worked at our laptops, the people at the next booth were getting curious about us. We were going over photos of the demos and our excitement over the burger and grapes resulted in a picture of our meal. For that, I don't blame them for eavesdropping. Especially since they saw our bikini demo on the news.
We had a long conversation that covered factory farming, health issues, spay/neuter and horse racing. Lindsay and I could relate to this family, who lost a relative to cancer that morning. With all the possibly heated topics discussed, we had very friendly interaction. These conversations are my favorite part of activism because I learn from people while sharing my perspective.

Mobile, AL:
For Valentine's Day we hit a small restaurant called Bandito Burrito. We each had a massive burrito filled with beans and grilled veggies. The owner came over to offer us heart shaped sugar cookies that we had to decline. He said he didn't get to reading the ingredients because he was too busy eating the cookies. The atmosphere was very family oriented and the servers were sweet.

Montgomery, AL:
We hung out in Montgomery in order to have dinner with one of Lindsay's college friends. We met up at El Rey Burrito, a very cute restaurant downtown, for a remarkable meal. Lindsay had a tempeh fajita and I had a portabello mushroom "platos" that came with a sweet potato, chile verde, beans, rice, salsa, guacamole and pineapple. I loved the variety of flavors and found it very filling.

Bowling Green, KY:
We have passed many a Moe's on our trip but we finally stopped in. Talk about a mammoth burrito! I had mine with black beans, rice, tofu, grilled veg, guacamole, onions and cilantro. It was too big to finish so now I have a midnight snack!

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Lindsay and Nicole hit the road

Lindsay and I, wearing nothing but yellow bikinis and white fuzzy earmuffs, will travel from Norfolk, VA to twenty different KFC locations in the southern states. We are asking people to Boycott KFC and demanding the company cease their horrific abuse of chickens and adopt better welfare standards.

I am anxious to attract attention to the plight of KFC's chickens. From 11:30-12:30 we will be at 2301 Wards Rd in Lynchburg, VA. From there we drive an hour and fifteen minutes to Salem for another demo from 2:30-3:30.