Ah yes, along with Spring comes the cannabis lover’s sacred holiday. With it, amazing deals at your local dispensary, and events official and impromptu, are plentiful for partaking. Luckily, I live in one of the cities that has played host to what has become a truly unique and extremely active event for cannabis users and advocates.
The 420 Games in the past have taken place in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Denver, hosting a 4.2 mile run, BMX trick bike showcases, yoga, and booths with samples from local cannabis vendors. The 2019 event has recently shifted ownership, but if the new event producers stick to the tenets that made the games so popular, it will still be a delightful event. Tickets are not yet available, but if they’re still the low cost of $10-$15, well worth it! Currently, their main site is inactive, so I encourage all fans and interested participants to reach out to 420 Games on social media to encourage their return in LA!
When my friend peer pressured me into getting a ticket, I mostly thought it would be a deceitful “fun run” with some free stickers as swag. I arrived way earlier than my friend who goaded me into attending, and was a little peeved because I hate running. Nothing makes me feel weaker than my struggle with steady state cardio, and I was so scared to make a fool of myself. While there were advanced runners in the crowd, being a group of weed smokers, most of the group jogged or leisurely walked the fairly short distance, and I felt totally at ease once I realized I could keep up with this gang. Not to say there weren’t serious athletes present; I was passed by some speedsters multiple times. As I was (slowly) running along, beachgoers taking note of the numbered joggers, it occurred to me just how powerful this event is for breaking stigma. Realizing that I could be apart of exemplifying the drive, motivation, and even physicality of a regular cannabis user, I spurred myself to jog the entire distance, only walking short bouts to not totally lose my breath. After finishing the run from Santa Monica pier to Venice and then back, my feet were blistered and sore, but that feeling of physical accomplishment and my own surprise at my ability to complete that run… so worth it. If this event spurs on any other stoner to push their limits and show the world that loving cannabis is in no way a hindrance to physical wellbeing, or even prowess, then it is doing such good.
My friend did show up… but just for the free samples, which I cannot judge him for in any way, shape or form, because those samples were worth the meager ticket price alone. We celebrated my victorious run by consuming, over the course of a few hours, probably close to 200mg of THC total each, and then leaving with a tote jam-packed with, not only edibles and some CBD beverages, mini glass blunt pipes, stickers and matches, but a high-end joint as well. We knew that edibles and nonperishable treats would be offered, but we were very impressed that a vendor would distribute free flower.
While it saddens me to get a 404 page upon visiting the website, I am hopeful that I will still be able to complete the run again this year. Please reach out to the event wherever you can and let them know you believe in their mission and would love to be apart of it. Yes, 420 is a precious holiday reserved for getting as high as the clouds, but turning it into an opportunity for advocacy, visibility, and positivity for health and cannabis is an inarguably good way to spend the day.