You don’t have to live in a cannabis-friendly location to get in on some 420-friendly action. From high-tech events to product-focused expos, there are plenty of cannabis events on the roster in 2019. Check out these recommendations.
The Cannabis Cup
Maybe the best-known festival on the list of 420 events, the Cannabis Cup has been hosted in Amsterdam each November since 1988. With rolling legalization in America, offshoot events are now hosted throughout the United States. Attendees can dabble in edibles and live music, but the real show is the highly anticipated cannabis competition. Myriad strains and products compete in an ever-increasing list of categories. Stakes are high, as winning can catapult a business or cultivator into superstar status.
Seattle’s annual HempFest began in 1991 as a summer gathering to advocate for marijuana legalization. Attendance has steadily increased since the ’90s, with police adopting a permissive attitude toward the public pot smoking that occurs among attendees. Since cannabis was legalized in Washington in 2013, police officers now hand out Doritos with the state’s regulations printed on the bag. Famous cannabis advocates have been known to speak at the event, which also features performances by funk and jam bands. HempFest dates for 2019 are August 16-18.
Marijuana Business Conference & Expo
The oldest and largest national cannabis trade show offers a bounty of networking opportunities, including rubbing shoulders with nearly 30,000 cannabis industry professionals. MJBizCon is considered a must-attend event for every cannabis business owner, and over 150 classes were offered in 2018 from “marijuana business crash course” to female entrepreneur networking events. Business owners can obtain supplies, learn about legal issues, understand market trends and forecasts and much more during this three-day event. Dates have not yet been announced for 2019, but the conference is generally held in Las Vegas during November.
Cannabis Wedding Expo
From CBD-infused wedding cakes to sticky-bud bridal bouquets, cannabis weddings are gaining popularity. MJ-focused caterers, weed florists, cannabis mixologists and even high honeymoons at cannabis resorts are available to brides in an emerging market that was previously stigmatized. At the expo, attendees get a chance to see how cannabis can be tied into their special days in a classy and beautiful way. It is also beneficial for those who may be unsure how to navigate the legality of cannabis products in their state, especially when it comes to hosted events.
As recreational cannabis gains political ground, the expo founders hope to continue to expand to more cities. For now, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver and Las Vegas are on the docket for early 2019.
Established as a fun way to de-stigmatize cannabis and show that marijuana users are active, healthy and responsible, the 420 Games offers a series of active lifestyle events. The event features a 4.20-mile foot race as well as a beer garden, vendor booths and speeches from athletes and educators. Past games have been hosted in Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Denver, Portland and more. Stay tuned for more information regarding the 420 Games tour dates and cities for 2019.
Jacquelyn Nause is a contributing writer with specialties in cannabis, real estate and wellness. She enjoys traveling with her husband, being a doting mother to her two incredible kids and enjoying the beautiful Pacific Northwest playground. Follow her on Instagram @callmejacquelyn.