ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — As Vegan restaurants become more popular in Roanoke, a Black-owned vegan spot in the northwest part of the city seems to be a stand-out.
Located on Melrose Avenue, Screamin’ Vegan has taken its neighborhood by storm. The restaurant is run by Larry Jones, who grew up in the area.
He says the vegan spot came from a need he saw in his community.
“When you’ve got all the, everything else, but you can’t come and get a good healthy burger, a good healthy salad, you can’t just stand by.”
So he opened up his dream of four years with a friend.
Fellow Roanoke vegan and YMCA Kametic Yoga instructor, Antonio Stovall, says his food journey began when he was working at a health food store, but it has become more popular in the Black community recently.
“It was a taboo, but now it’s becoming more accepted,” said Stovall.
He and Jones both said that cancer impacted their decision to ‘go vegan.’
“I had, like, four or five aunts die from cancer, my dad had cancer, so with that being said, that inspired me to want to change my way of eating,” Stovall explained.
“I was 25 with stage four colon cancer,” said Jones, who lost 11 centimeters of his intestine to the illness.
Now, Jones is using his experience to inspire and provide healthy options to others.
“We brought our dreams to life, and here it is, Screamin Vegan, and we ain’t going nowhere.”