The nine best 4/20 shows in Denver

Why yes, Snoop Dogg does travel with a dog mascot who smokes a cartoon-sized blunt.
Why yes, Snoop Dogg does travel with a dog mascot who smokes a cartoon-sized blunt.
John Gilhooley for OC Weekly. Slideshow

Colorado has been under the microscope of international media since legalizing recreational marijuana. With that recognition comes the influx of tourism; people flocking to the mile high state to try out some of the tastiest ganja the world has ever seen. But, it also means our celebration on April 20 will be the biggest and best in the country. We picked the ten best shows in the Denver/Boulder area so you can prepare your weekend festivities accordingly.

Please note the new regulations regarding medical and recreational marijuana. It is against the law to smoke inside establishments, within public view, or generally anywhere there is live music open to the general public. We do not condone breaking the law, but we may or may not have done some informal field research and found it may or may not be possible that you can sneak a toke or two at some of these venues.

9. Denver Merchandise Mart: Cannabis Cup Lineup: Slightly Stoopid, Mac Miller Tickets: $40-$200 Time: Doors at 1 p.m. Slightly Stoopid and Mac Miller are set to the headline the now-annual Cannabis Cup as it returns to Denver for the second time. Last year was kind of a mess , but the Denver Mart is a better place for this event. Slightly Stoopid and Mac Miller both love weed, so it will probably be a pretty good time.

8. City Hall Events Venue: Green Light District LLC presents Lineup: Rusko, CollieRAD Tickets: $20-$40 Time: 9 pm Rusko is a fucking beast when it comes to wobbling them beats, and he loves the green stuff. CollieRAD are listed on the bill, but they don't play anything remotely close to Rusko -- they are sort of jammy and Sublime-esque.

7. 1UP Colfax: Festival 64 Lineup: Signal Path, Chrome Drones, Genetics, Fun Factory, Pruitt, Mantaray, Sightlow Tickets: $15-$20 Time: 3 p.m. - 2 a.m. 1Up has been killing it with the live music lately, and this day will be no different. Featuring Signal Path, Chrome Drones, Genetics, Fun Factory, Pruitt, Mantaray and Sightlow, this event will be all disco and dank from start to finish. Plus there will be video games for all you nerds who like dancing while chomping on PacMan bits.


6. Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom Lineup: Method Man, Redman, 8Ball, MJG, Leftover Salmon Tickets: $42-$65 for Method Man, Redman. $4.20 presale for Leftover Salmon Time: 1:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. for Method Man and Redman, 2 p.m. - 11 p.m. for Leftover Salmon Method Man and Redman might as well call Denver a second home (as a matter of fact, we've overheard that every time they play here) since they come here all the time. Who cares? They always bring the house down and they love to pull some massive hits off of blunts. Oh! And 8Ball and MJG will be playing, too. So, there's that. Leftover Salmon, another Colorado favorite, will play in the streets, and we recommend not missing that show, given Elephant Revival and some friends are going to be jamming with them.

5. Civic Center Park: The Official 420 Rally Lineup: Wyclef Jean, B.O.B., The Expendables, Zion I, Bass Physics, Peplove, Sunsquabi, Pries, MTHDS, Rumtum, DJ Cavem, Rose Quartz, and FL of the Foodchain Tickets: Free! Time: all day Civic Center Park always does a big rally where people come down and smoke pot in public, but this year, with all the regulations in place regarding public smoking, people aren't allowed to do that (Ahem). Wyclef Jean is headlining on the main stage, along with B.O.B., The Expendables, Zion I, Bass Physics, Peplove, Sunsquabi, Pries, MTHDS, Rumtum, DJ Cavem, Rose Quartz, and FL of the Foodchain supporting on various stages spread out across the park. There will also be food and market vendors selling various swag.

4. The Fillmore Auditorium: The Waldo's Music Fest Lineup: Matisyahu, Congo Sanchez, Talib Kweli Tickets: $42 Time: 7 p.m. Matisyahu is one of those rappers who came in and sort of changed the game with reggae raps and Judaic influence. Though you might overlook his religious status, his rhymes still promote peace, love, and spreading both in whatever fashion you prefer. Congo Sanchez seems to fit right in with this idea, and Talib Kweli is just fucking legendary when it comes to buttery rhymes.


3. Denver Center for Performing Arts Sculpture Park: Daze on the Green Lineup: Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, Kyle Hollingsworth, Mike Dillon Band, Toubab Krewe, The Recovery Act, Dank Allstars Tickets: $21.10 - $150 Time: 2 p.m. With one of the best lineups for any outdoor celebration, DCPA might be one of the best places to be. With Colorado favorites Karl Denson's Tiny Universe and Kyle Hollingsworth, your fifteen bucks is already going a long way. Once you add Toubab Krewe, Mike Dillon Band, The Recovery Act and the Dank Allstars, well, that's a really good bang for your buck kind of show.

2. Darkstar Lounge: Dabroots Festival Lineup: Nappy Roots, David Starfire, Krooked Drivers, the Malah, plus many more Tickets: $15-$250 (prices depend on late-night shows, all-day events, and weekend passes) Time: 1 p.m. - 1 a.m. Dabroots Festival is more or less the unofficial Cannabis Cup for Colorado, except it's not geared towards voting for the best weed in the business. The guys over Grassroots California put together a festival to celebrate the culture of marijuana, and they have done a great job at it. With Nappy Roots headlining and support from the Malah, Krooked Drivers, David Starfire, and more musical acts over the course of the weekend, you'll get your fix in the dance arena. On top of that, there will also be comedians doing some stand-up bits, some jugglers, some fire people, some laser tag, some dabs (duh) and a whole lot of bad-ass people doing cool things. This is a festival to celebrate the culture, so, celebrate it.

1. Red Rocks Amphitheatre: Snoop's Wellness Retreat Lineup: Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa, YG, Smoke DZA Tickets: $59.50 GA, $100 VIP Time: Doors at 6 pm, show at 7:30 pm Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa are some of the biggest advocates for marijuana in the rap game, so it only makes that they would headline at the best venue in the world. To boot, YG and Smoke DZA, who are also no strangers to marijuana, will be supporting the dual headliners. Remember, if you didn't get tickets to this one, Snoop will be DJing at the Gothic after the show.

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