For the cannabis enthusiast who loves music, comedy, or raking in much needed capital for an industry startup, there's a little something for everyone on cannabis holiday 4/20 this year and much of it can be enjoyed without ever leaving the comfort of a couch.
As the coronavirus vaccine effort continues to roll out across the U.S., in-person events are slowly resuming, but many cannabis companies have chosen to host their events online or throw hybrid in-person and virtual events to keep cannabis lovers safe and socially distant.
Even Higher Together
Following the success of last year's "Higher Together" virtual 4/20 festival, which Weedmaps said attracted some 250,000 viewers, the cannabis directory and software company is hosting "Even Higher Together." The stream will be hosted by Snoop Dogg, and feature performances from headliners A$AP Rocky and Jhené Aiko, as well as TOKiMONSTA, Rebelution's Eric Rachmany, and more.
There will also be interactive events like a panel by Last Prisoner Project, moderated by Talib Kweli, to discuss criminal justice reform in cannabis legalization, and an interactive, infused cooking segment featuring Mike Tyson and celebrity chef Nikki Steward.
"Today with the state of vaccinations, we just want to continue to give people a reason to enjoy and celebrate 4/20 but do so in that in a safe manner," Weedmaps Chief Marketing Officer Juanjo Feijoo said. "I think we also learned a lot from last year … I think the segments are much richer."
"Even Higher Together" kicks off at 4 p.m. ET/1 p.m. PT, so as to ring in 4/20 in every time zone across the continental U.S.
Couch Locked by Cookies — 420 Comedy Special Event
For the comedy buff, rapper, and Cookies co-founder Gilbert Milam Jr., a.k.a. Berner, is throwing a Couch Locked comedy show to kick off his newly announced media platform, Couch Locked Network. A limited number of in-person tickets have already sold out, but Cookies enthusiasts can also pay to view a stream of the event, which kicks off at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT. The lineup features comedians Bob Saget, Jeff Ross, and Lil Duval, among others.
"It's going to be an incredible lineup, and I think that being able to bring this vibe into people's homes and smartphones on 4/20 is something that's been missing for a while, and we can't wait to be able to open up bigger venues and do this around the world," Berner told Cheddar.
Glass House Fest
Glass House Farms is hosting Glass House Fest, a socially distanced festival headlined by Flying Lotus in a secret location in Los Angeles. The event will also stream live for free on YouTube and Twitch, starting at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.
And for cannabis lovers who can't get enough of the plant on 4/20, the company is offering a virtual tour of its cultivation facility on its website.
Puff Puff Pitch
For the dedicated entrepreneur, Catharine Dockery, founder of Vice Ventures, is hosting "Puff Puff Pitch" on Clubhouse, starting at 4:20 p.m. PT. It's a Shark Tank-inspired investment opportunity where cannabis startups can pitch to win real funding.
4/20 THROUGH THE YEARS
Cannabis holiday 4/20 has had many meanings over the years from a celebration of cannabis counterculture to a rallying cry for legalization advocates.
According to a group of friends who call themselves, "the Waldos," the unofficial holiday got its start in the '70s when they'd meet after class at 4:20 p.m. to smoke. Since then, it has come to represent a celebration of the cannabis plant and the culture that developed alongside it, as well as a time for advocates to push for reform at the state and federal levels. As legalization has grown more mainstream, it has even become a commercial holiday. The Black Friday of cannabis, it is typically the biggest shopping day of the year for the cannabis industry. (CITE).
Although in decades past it had more fringe appeal, support for cannabis legalization is now very mainstream. According to Pew Research, some 91 percent of Americans now favor legalization for medical cannabis, adult-use, or both — up from just 12 percent who supported legalization in 1969, according to Gallup. Just since last November, voters in five states approved six different legalization initiatives, and three additional states — including New York — moved to legalize adult-use cannabis through the legislative process in 2021.
Weedmaps' Feijoo said that gathering momentum toward legalization doesn't mean the work of advocates and the industry is over.
"Reform is never over. There's progress that has been made. I think there's a lot of room to go still," he said. "There are several flavors of discourse that I think can and need to happen. I think one is around reform from a social justice perspective … there's reform from the legalization and access perspective, and then I think there's the de-stigmatization of cannabis as a plant and of cannabis consumers, as well."
The meaning and significance of 4/20 have changed quite a bit over the years, but Feijoo anticipates it continuing to be an important beacon for the industry.
"For me what 4/20 really has become in the last few years, and I think will continue to become is that sort of like, you know, that key moment where I think more of the national discourse, switches to talk about cannabis."