CANNABIS CULTURE – Last week marked Vancouver’s 24th annual 420 celebration. Depending on the source, estimates of the crowd range between 40,000 and 100,000 attendees. Vancouver’s 420 is widely considered to be the largest open-air cannabis market in the world.
This year was particularly poignant as it comes just before the promised date for cannabis legalization in Canada. The gathered crowd at Sunset Beach was entertained by a selection of local hip-hop acts as well as legendary California rapper E40.
The event was a peaceful act of civil disobedience. Organizers, who were refused a permit for the event (again), invested $30,000 to install a temporary protective flooring over the grassy areas of the park, as well as paying for portable restrooms and garbage clean-up. This was neccesarry because the city of Vancouver saw fit to shut off all city provided utilities (toilets, drinking fountains etc) and block of the availability of trash receptacles. In response, the Cannabis Culture led army of volunteers worked through the night to return the park to it’s original splendor. And, 420 organizers paid all costs associated with clean-up efforts.
In the time since, the Vancouver Parks Board has issued a very public statement saying the park would be closed to the public for 10 weeks to remediate the grass, they claimed was damaged by 420. Now, they’ve changed their “prediction” to a 6-week closure. Meanwhile, the Parks Board’s twitter account was inundated with photos of the undamaged park (as it existed on April 21st), and city taxpayer’s demanding to know why the parks board had attempted to paint a picture that reality could not confirm.
The attached photo gallery features images captured on 420 by Cannabis Culture staffer and host of Pot Tv’s Saturday High Noon live-stream show as well as photos submitted by freelance Vancouver photographer Milton Stille.