It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Winter is finally coming to an end, spring flowers are blooming, which means that the ‘greenest’ (and our favorite) holiday is right around the corner…
It’s safe to say that April 20th (4/20) has a special place in every modern cannabis consumer’s heart.
Whether it means sharing a joint with your best bud, hosting a cannabis-infused dinner party, or attending any of the awesome events being held around the country — 420 has surely become a worldwide cannabis culture phenomenon.
Keep reading as we celebrate by diving into the hazy origin of 420. We’ll talk about how it has evolved into the holiday we know and love today, as well as what it means to our team here at PufCreativ.
What is ‘420’?
Firstly, it’s a fact that the number ‘420’ holds a strong connection to cannabis. Pop culture, music, literature, and other various forms of art have referenced this number as an innuendo to all things related to cannabis culture.
However, the debate on the exact origin of this unofficial cannabis holiday has continued to leave cannabis enthusiasts dazed and confused.
Many rumors have flurried around over the years, until one exclusive High Times interview finally set the record straight.
The Founding ‘Puffers’ of the Holiday: Discovering ‘The Waldos’
Next, casting all speculation aside, let’s talk about the confirmed origins of 420:
In 1971, a group of friends (The Waldos) met up after school for an adventurous escapade. They had learned a Coast Guard member planted a cannabis plant nearby that he could no longer tend, leaving the group with a map to find the treasured crop.
After school and their extracurricular practices, they would meet up at precisely 4:20pm, pile into the car, puff, and undertake the exploration of finding the mystical plant.
Passing by the hallways throughout the school day, they would remind each other when they were supposed to meet up by using the code word, “4:20-Louis” (but eventually dropping the “Louis” for more secrecy).
According to The Waldos’ own Dave Reddix:
“We’d start off at the school and then go to ‘less bustable places’ in the mountains. We were, and still are, comedic desperados. We had a blast making jokes about everything and mostly cracking each other up.”
Although they never found the plant, the memorable times and adventures shared between The Waldos gradually turned into a worldwide cultural phenomenon.
Later, they went on to build connections with the rock & roll industry, specifically aligning themselves with visionary groups such as The Grateful Dead.
Deadheads and cannabis enthusiasts alike shared the lingo as a reference to meeting up for a smoke session.
A Certified Cannabis Culture Sensation
Subsequently, the term ‘420’ spread faster than a dank joint passed in a cipher:
- By 2003, California legislature had even codified the medical marijuana law, SB 420.
- Craft breweries all around the country now have 420-themed beers.
- Many popular songs have ‘420’ innuendos in them.
The above-mentioned are just the tip of the iceberg. As you can see, little did The Waldos know that their secret codewords and adventurous pastimes would lead to what is known today as a much-beloved national movement.
Assessing the Impact of the 420 Holiday
Long before medical or recreational legalization was even a glimmer of a thought, April 20th was already known as a day for the cannabis community around the world to praise the plant and break the stigma.
Friends would come together to smoke a joint in harmony. Events, parades, and rallies all over the world celebrate and spread advocacy and awareness for the beloved herb.
Even as the fight for federal legalization seemingly inches closer to a resolution, 420 continues to make an impact in one of the quickest-growing global industries.
Cannabis dispensaries around the country honor this jubilant day through discounts, deals, and offerings. In fact, last year on April 20th, 2021, the marijuana retail industry reached $175.6 million in a single day’s worth of sales revenue.
What Does 420 Mean to Us?
Furthermore, the cannabis marketing sector continues to achieve great triumphs when it comes to making a difference. This is despite the ever-present setbacks and restrictions due to the stigma surrounding the plant and its legal status. (For example: did you know that there are still 19(!) states in which a joint can still land you in jail?)
But even amidst these trials and tribulations, responsible cannabis brands continue to honor the spirit of the 420 holiday through cannabis social equity awareness as well as measurable action within local communities.
So, what does ‘420’ really mean to us?
For our team, ‘420’ marks another opportunity to illuminate the benefits of cannabis, remove the stigma, and contribute to the fight for social justice, in meaningful (as well as measurable) ways.
As we move forward, it is absolutely crucial to support social equity and those who have been affected by the harmful consequences of the War on Drugs.
At PufCreativ, we strive to show our continuous support for social equity initiatives throughout the legal cannabis industry, by working alongside esteemed organizations such as BIPOCANN & Last Prisoner Project.
5 Exciting 420 Events Happening in 2022
This year, the celebration of 420 is growing bigger than ever! Here are just some of the great 420 events happening across the United States:
- 420 On the Rocks
This year on April 20th at the Red Rocks Amphitheater, grab the crew and get funky at 420 On the Rocks! This concert features various iconic cannabis loving musical artists.
- Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival
Consisting of over 150 vendors, live music, and discussion panels, this festival is back at the Pocono Raceway for it’s second-annual event honoring all things cannabis.
- FloFest ’22
Another two day festival full of vendors, live music, glass blowing, and more. This festival celebrates the emerging Florida cannabis lifestyle.
- Sweetwater 420 Fest
Located in Atlanta, Georgia, the Sweetwater 420 Fest is known for its stacked lineup of artists and musicians (like Snoop Dogg and The String Cheese Incident) over a fun-filled two days.
- National Cannabis Festival
Coming up on its 8th year in the nation’s capital, the National Cannabis Festival includes a great lineup of artists, as well as discussion panels like CannaTalk– where festival-goers have the chance to pitch their own canna-biz!
Some 420 Events & Campaigns PufCreativ is Involved With:
But wait, there’s more! Here are just some of the 420 events & campaigns PufCreativ is proud to be involved with:
The cannabis industry has benefited greatly from a product whose prohibition was weaponized to disempower Black and brown people and their communities. The Cannabis Impact Coalition is an ongoing campaign devoted to bringing cannabis brands together to create a conscious cannabis sector. As cannabis business leaders, we need to take action to right the wrongs of the past and help create solutions for a better future.
ShoppingGives, the leading social impact commerce platform, in partnership with the Cannabis Impact Fund, calls on cannabis brands to join in the effort. Coalition participants will fundraise by pledging to donate a percentage of their proceeds to support the Cannabis Impact Fund and the supported nonprofit grantees.
Get Your Exclusive Puf Swag While Dancing to Mikey Barrenche @ Roar Philly
You can catch our Co-Founder, Katie Burrell, slangin’ Puf SWAG this 420 for Mikey Barreneche at Roar in Philly for Wave Rave Wednesday! Be Sure to Come Say “High”!
“Happy 420” From PufCreativ!
Finally, 420 is a cannabis holiday to not only honor the multi-faceted aspects of cannabis but to celebrate the evolution and great advances made throughout many decades.
It’s also a great opportunity to focus on the various social equity milestones yet to be conquered.
Whether you’ll be couch-melted watching your favorite cannabis-themed movies, passing a joint between friends, or enjoying a fun festival with your local cannabis community – on this holiday, take a moment, take a puff, and give thanks!
We’d also like to highlight the importance of practicing conscious cannabis consumption in every situation.
Wishing You All a Happy & Safe 420!
At PufCreativ, we’re proud to represent the cannabis community by providing creative cannabis marketing services for brands and businesses in the industry.
For any questions about the services we offer, or to get started on a project, contact firstname.lastname@example.org